No change to official cash rate in March

The Reserve Bank has kept the official cash rate steady at 4.25% for the second month in a row today.

Last month's no change, came as a big surprise to Aussie economists, who were almost certain of a rate cut. However, today's announcement comes as no big surprise, with most commentators predicting the cash rate to stay at its current level. Overall, there is more faith in the stability of Aussie economy, with low inflation, steady employment levels as well as the diminished threat of EU implosion.

Governor Glenn Stevens stated, "With growth expected to be close to trend and inflation close to target, the Board judged that the setting of monetary policy remained appropriate for the moment."

Stevens also referenced the moderate expansion of the US economy and EU policy makers ensuring the European economy would not deteriorate as reasons for the decision.

What will the banks do next?

In February, the banks attempted to shake off the notion of RBA "control" (and possibly make some extra bucks), with 46 lenders increasing their variable home loan rates, ranging from 0.01% to 0.15%, despite the RBA not changing rates.

Will we see the same in March? The Mozo team will be on the case, reporting changes live as they happen.

High LVR's are back

During the GFC, high risk loans were kicked out the door in order to stabilise the Aussie economy. It seems as though the Aussie economy is reaching a level of security, with 95% LVR loans reappearing recently.

The jury is out on whether this is a good sign of securitisation, or a warning of a quick return to the bad old days.

To fix or not to fix?

With interest rates steady, a variable rate home loan may be a good choice. The UBank UHomeLoan tops the ranks with a 6.23% comparison rate, even after a 9 basis points increase in February. Have a play with Mozo's home loan comparison tool for a complete look at the home loan market.

Save away Aussies!

Term deposits currently offer fantastic fixed interest rates for 6 months to 1 year. The UBank Term Deposit Online 404 offers a stand-out 5.95% interest rate for 6 months, compared to the UBank USaver which has a 6.01% variable rate (with an automatic savings plan in place). A short-term deposit could be a good play when you factor in the additional RBA cuts expected in 2012.

Read last month's Reserve Bank interest rates update.

Top home loans - last updated 8 December 2023

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* WARNING: This comparison rate applies only to the example or examples given. Different amounts and terms will result in different comparison rates. Costs such as redraw fees or early repayment fees, and cost savings such as fee waivers, are not included in the comparison rate but may influence the cost of the loan. The comparison rate displayed is for a secured loan with monthly principal and interest repayments for $150,000 over 25 years.

** Initial monthly repayment figures are estimates only, based on the advertised rate. You can change the loan amount and term in the input boxes at the top of this table. Rates, fees and charges and therefore the total cost of the loan may vary depending on your loan amount, loan term, and credit history. Actual repayments will depend on your individual circumstances and interest rate changes.

^See information about the Mozo Experts Choice Home Loan Awards

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