RBA announcement: Official cash rate on hold at 2.5%


Tuesday 07 October 2014

The Reserve Bank of Australia has left the official cash rate at a steady 2.5% for the 14th consecutive month.

Governor Glenn Stevens said in a statement that financial conditions remain very accommodative. "Long-term interest rates and risk spreads remain very low. Markets still appear to be attaching a low probability to any rise in global interest rates or other adverse event over the period ahead."

The historic low cash rate isn’t expected to change until sometime next year, as the RBA seeks alternative measures to deflate the booming property market.

Savings account shakeup

With interest rates at record lows, earning juicy returns on your cash stash has been difficult. ANZ recently reduced the bonus intro rate on its Online Saver from 4 months to 3 months and CommBank cut its ongoing bonus rate on its Goal Saver account from 4.00% to 3.81%.

However, competition for your bank account has brought some enticing offers into the savings sphere that are well worth a look.

On 1 October, ING DIRECT ditched its intro bonus rate offer on the Savings Maximiser, in favour of a 4.00% ongoing interest rate, as long as you link the savings account to its Orange Everyday bank account and deposit $1,000 a month.

UBank has also introduced a similar scheme, where you’ll receive a 4.17% ongoing interest rate, the highest in the market, when you open a USaver Ultra (Ultra and linked USaver) and deposit $200 each month.

Are you accruing a measly savings account rate with your current provider? It’s time to shake up your savings by searching the savings account market for a great rate.

Home loan rate cuts continue...

On the opposite end of the financial spectrum, home loans offer competitive interest rates for homeowners with many below the 5% mark.

Newcastle Permanent takes out the top spot for its 3.79% for 1 year, 4.39% for 2 years, 4.49% for 3 years fixed rate home loans, while eMoney offers an impressive 4.77% for its fully fixed 4 or 5 year home loan. Once again, loans.com.au offers the lowest variable rate with its 4.54% Dream Home Loan Variable.

And the interest rate cuts continue with Newcastle Permanent Building Society, Greater Building Society and IMB making cuts to all fixed terms. Newcastle made the largest slash to its 1 year rate totalling 60 basis points during September, while Greater cut 40 basis points off their 4 year rate.

ANZ was the only Big 4 to make a cut with its variable rate, dropping 6 basis points on its Simplicity Plus loan, down to 5.12%.

Take advantage of record low interest rates by searching the home loan market here.

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