Matthew Hassan, analyst at Westpac, points out that for the Australian economy housing finance approvals softened in November with weakness concentrated in investor loans and the value, as opposed to the number, of owner occupier loans.
“The headline number of owner occupier loans held up a little better than expected in the month, recording a 0.9% decline vs consensus and Westpac forecasts of a 1.5% fall. Ex-refi, the number of approvals was down only 0.6%mth. Despite this slightly better than expected complexion to the latest month, weakness is still clear with the number of owner occupier approvals ex refi down 10%yr.”
“The value of investor loans dropped 4.5% in Nov to be down 23.4%yr to the lowest level since June 2013.”
“The combined total value of housing finance approvals including investors but excluding owner occupier refi, was down 2.9%, reversing the previous month’s 2.9% rise to be down 16%yr.”