Australia’s ‘big four’ banks pass on full 50 bp variable mortgage rate hike

Australia’s “big four” lenders raised their home loan variable interest rates on Wednesday by 50 basis points (bps) per annum, passing on the central bank’s third consecutive rate hike in full to their customers.

Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA.AX), National Australia Bank (NAB.AX), Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ.AX) and Westpac Banking Corp (WBC.AX) all lifted their mortgage rates to match the official 50 bp cash rate hike announced on Tuesday.

While new rates for customers of CBA, NAB and ANZ will be effective from July 15, Westpac’s rates will apply from July 20.

All four banks offered higher term deposit rate of 2.50% per annum for some savings products for variable deposit durations.

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) lifted its key cash rate to 1.35% on Tuesday, marking 125 basis points of hike since May and the fastest series of moves since 1994 – all to contain surging inflation even at the risk of triggering a recession.

Australian lenders so far have been in lockstep with the central bank in passing the full rate hike to their customers, expecting to reap benefits at a time when the country’s property market is showing signs of cooling after a bumper 22% price surge last year.