1.99% mortgage rate, government support and small businesses: This week’s best banking news

By Polly Fleeting ·
  • Loans.com.au introduce new home loan rate below 2.00% 
  • What the Jobkeeper and Jobseeker extensions could mean for you
  • Small business support: SME Loan Guarantee extended
  • Meet Dabble! Xinja’s new venture into share trading
  • Aussie spending set to drop as restrictions tighten again 
  • What type of pandemic shopper are you? 

All in this week’s best banking news: editor’s pick.

Say hello to the 1.99% variable mortgage rate from loans.com.au

On Wednesday, online lender loans.com.au unveiled its lowest home loan variable rate: 1.99% (2.55% comparison rate*). 

Named the Smart Booster Home Loan, the new competitive rate is available for owner-occupiers and refinancers who have a deposit or equity of 20% or higher. 

The 1.99% discount rate applies for the first year of the loan, after which it reverts to a still competitive 2.57% variable rate. 

According to the Mozo database, loans.com.au is now one of three lenders to offer home loan rates below 2.00%. 

Read full article:
Loans.com.au unveils its new 1.99% variable rate home loan and find out what loans.com.au managing director, Marie Mortimer says about this hot new rate. 

JobKeeper and JobSeeker payments extended: what it could mean for your finances

Recent Mozo data revealed that over a quarter of workers relying on JobKeeper and Jobseeker payments won’t be able to afford rent or mortgage payments if the support were to stop. That’s 1.3 million Aussies.   

However, on Tuesday the Morrison Government announced that both the JobKeeper and JobSeeker support packages will be extended beyond the planned end date next month. 

Here’s a breakdown of what will change:

- Extended to March 2021

- From Sept 28: reduced to $1,200 a fortnight (full time) and $750 for those working less than 20 hours per week 

- From March 2021: reduced to $1,000 a fortnight (full time) and $650 for those working less than 20 hours per week
- Bring reviewed end of 2020 

- From Sept 28: reduced to $250 a fortnight & income threshold increased to $300 

- From Aug 4: mutual obligation requirement to resume job searches through employment services provider will recommence

Read full article: JobKeeper and JobSeeker extensions: What the new payments mean for you to check out how to get your payment extension. 

SME Loan Guarantee Scheme extended to help Aussie businesses recover 

This week, the government announced that it is extending the SME Loan Guarantee Scheme which was set to end on September 30 of this year. 

The new phase of the scheme will run from October 1, 2020 until June 30, 2021 and allow small to medium-sized businesses (SMEs) to borrow larger amounts up to $1 million. 

Under the current scheme, the federal government guarantees 50% of business loans for SMEs from 41 participating lenders. At the moment the guarantee covers three-year unsecured loans of up to $250,000. 

However, from October the scheme will also include secured loans, longer repayment periods (up to five years) and apply to a wider range of funding purposes. 

Read full article:
SME Loan Guarantee Scheme extended to support small business recovery to check out some of the 41 lenders are participating in the scheme. 

Want to ‘Dabble’ in share trading? Xinja plans to let customers do just that


Aussie neobank Xinja has announced its plans to launch Dabble, a share trading platform within the neobank’s app. 

Aussie users will be able to buy over 3,000 US stocks and ETFs (exchange traded funds) all within the palm of their hands. The platform comes without any brokerage costs, however there will be an $8 monthly subscription fee and 1% foreign exchange margin. 

Customers will be able to buy shares using their linked Xinja Bank Account and are tracked through the Xinja app (in both AUD and USD). The platform is not yet available to investors and the launch is still subject to regulatory approval. 

Read full article:
Xinja unveils share trading platform Dabble for words from Xinja’s founder and chief executive, Eric Wilson. 

Aussies to spend less as restrictions backflip, says Zip  

Last month, Aussie spending crept back up as life seemed to be getting back to “normal.” But with the curveball of tightened restrictions in July, those numbers may plummet again. 

Co-founder and chief operating officer of Buy Now Pay Later platform, Zip, Peter Gray says that while in June it looked like Aussie businesses were recovering, it may not be enough to survive a second wave of lockdowns. 

Zip’s Weekly Spending Index showed that restaurants, cafes, pubs, bars and gyms all saw relative growth in spending over June, however they are still struggling compared to this time last year. 

For example, pubs and bars were down 30% in June compared to 2019, and gyms are down 19%. And with more lockdowns potentially on the horizon, these industries may suffer even more. 

Read full article:
Aussie spending threatened as restrictions rebound, says Zip for a more comprehensive breakdown of Aussie spending in June. 

4 types of pandemic shopper: which one are you? 

According to Deloitte’s State of the Consumer Tracker report surveys, the coronavirus pandemic has categorised shoppers into four different types. 

The report surveys ten different countries, including Australia and is updated every few weeks. Here’s what the types of shoppers it found: 

  • The stockpiler: Remember toilet paper madness? Well, the number of Aussies stockpiling has actually risen again in the past few weeks, to around 34% of shoppers. 
  • The bargain hunter: 44% of Aussies say they will be cutting back on non-essentials like alcohol, clothes, books, electronics and takeaway over the next month. 
  • The socially conscious shopper: 48% of Aussies claim they’ll prioritise buying local over the next four weeks.  
  • The convenience seeker: 41% of people are more likely to buy something if it is more convenient. 

Read full article: How the pandemic created four types of shopper for a deeper look into Deloitte’s statistics. 

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Polly Fleeting
Polly Fleeting
Money writer

Polly Fleeting is a personal finance writer here at Mozo, specialising in loans and credit cards. Her work is aimed at helping people find ways to make smart product choices, reduce debt and get more for their hard-earned dollars. Polly has a degree in Journalism from the University of Technology, Sydney.