Australian Broker weekend wrap: More rate hikes and broker complaints drop as market share rises

by AB31 Oct 2015
The last week of October has seen more lenders join the major banks in hiking interest rates and consumer complaints against brokers drop at the same time as their market share continues to rise.

Following the moves by all four major banks, Macquarie Bank and Me Bank both increased variable rates across their home loan portfolios by 20 basis points. St George also announced it would increase variable rates, although the major bank subsidiary announced a 15 basis point increase across its variable rate home loans.

As a result of these widespread variable rate rises, a leading broker, Rael Bricker of House + Home Loans has encouraged brokers to get on the front foot and educate both referral partners and clients on standard variable rates, as the published rates are often only used as a measure of comparison and are not usually the rate that a client settles at.  

According to the Credit & Investment Ombudsman’s (CIO) annual report released this week, consumer complaints against mortgage and finance brokers decreased over the 2015 financial year. Brokers and aggregators accounted for just 6.1% of consumer complaints lodged with the Ombudsman in 2015.

At the same time as complaints against brokers are falling, broker market share is rising. According to NAB’s full-year results released this week, lending volumes through the broker channel grew by 12% over the year to September, while lending volumes through its proprietary channel grew by just 7%.

This was also the case for ANZ, which also published its full-year results this week. Mortgage brokers accounted for 48% of loans settled through the major bank over year, increasing their flow from 47% in FY14. Meanwhile, ANZ’s proprietary channel decreased their volume, from 53% of home loans processed in FY14 to 52% in FY15.