CBA and its subsidiary Bankwest accounted for nearly 40% of all first home loans processed in December, according to aggregator AFG.
Figures from AFG’s quarterly Competition Index show CBA accounted for 29.6% and Bankwest for 9.3% of all first home loans last month.
During the 12 months to December, Bankwest saw its overall market share decline from 12.6%, while CBA rose from 19.9% in January 2012.
AFG itself currently holds 10% of the total home loan market.
CBA’s strong performance in December drove the overall market share of major lenders to a 2012 high of 77.5% among first home buyers, the market sector in which non major lenders are traditionally strongest.
Suncorp drew back significantly from the first home buyer market last year. Although its overall 5.5% overall market share remained fairly consistent, its market share in the first home buyer sector declined from 16.4% in January to 6.1% by December.
By contrast, Keystart, a WA government-owned lender, gave the most dynamic performance among non-major lenders, growing market share from 0.1% in January to 4.9% by December.
Mark Hewitt, general manager of sales and operations says first home buyer markets in NSW and QLD are in a ‘dire state’ following the recent withdrawal of grants.
“In both states, levels are about one third what they were before the grants were withdrawn. The first home buyers of today are the upgraders, the refinancers and the investors of tomorrow – without them, the future for the whole market is concerning. We need more lenders to follow the lead set by the CBA group and to focus on supporting this segment more.”
Overall, the non-major to capture greatest market share during 2012 was Macquarie, which doubled from 1.8% to 3.6% of all loans processed, putting it on a par with ING (3.5%) and only slightly behind Suncorp (5.5%), the largest non-major lender.
CBA increased its share of fixed home loans in the quarter for October to December, becoming the largest provider of fixed loans in December with 18.8% of the market.
ANZ supplied the most variable home loans at 26.4%.