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Financial market: Housing loan interest rates

Housing loan interest rates

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) reviews and sets the cash rate on a monthly basis. The Reserve Bank’s Charter (1959) outlines three key areas influenced by monetary policy: the stability of the currency, employment, and the prosperity and welfare of the people of Australia.

The RBA Statistical Tables publications include data on the cash rate and the interest rates of owner-occupier and investor home loans and business loans, as well as data on inflation, exchange rates, liabilities and assets.

The cash rate influences other interest rates in the economy, including interest rates on variable housing loans. Housing loan rates are those quoted for loans to owner-occupiers and investors and are an average of the rates of large lenders in each category. ‘Standard’ rates apply to housing loans with facilities such as the option to redraw or make earlier payments. The cash rate reported from August 1990 reflects monetary policy changes (changes to the cash rate), which are made during the monthly RBA Board meeting –however the outcome of these meetings can often be to hold the cash rate. From May 1976 to July 1990, the monthly average of the cash rate is reported. As the RBA Board meets within each month, if the cash rate is changed the average cash rate for that month will fall between the original cash rate and the new rate.

See RBA Statistical Tables ( for in-depth commentary and analysis and important data quality information. Source reference tables Interest Rates and Yields – Money Market – Monthly – F1.1 (from May-1976 to Jul-1990), Monetary Policy Changes – A2 (From Aug-1990 onwards), and Indicator Lending Rates – F5.