August credit = rate rise

Well, the RBA’s DO2 is out again and there are some noteworthy things happening. Seasonally adjusted owner occupier mortgages grew at 6.6% annualised and investors at 9.2%. Combined growth was 7.4%

Credit cards are still on the nose, down 2.2% and despite all the nice advertisements, business lending fell 6.4%.

Whilst housing credit hasn’t fallen off a cliff, it is clearly down enough that house prices have begun to fall.

This gives some indication of the level of mortgage growth just needed to support house price stability. Let alone growth.

In the last quarter of 2009, as house prices soared, overall mortgage growth was tracking from 8% to 9.5% per month. Since April, as prices plateaued, it has oscillated between 5.2% and 7.4%.

Mind you, these figures may also be influenced by the changes in foreign investment laws.

Finally, so far as interest rate calculus goes, August was the strongest month since March for investment mortgage growth which will outweigh the now regular declines in business lending. A rise next week still looks likely.

David Llewellyn-Smith

David Llewellyn-Smith is Chief Strategist at the MB Fund and MB Super. David is the founding publisher and editor of MacroBusiness and was the founding publisher and global economy editor of The Diplomat, the Asia Pacific’s leading geo-politics and economics portal.

He is also a former gold trader and economic commentator at The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, the ABC and Business Spectator. He is the co-author of The Great Crash of 2008 with Ross Garnaut and was the editor of the second Garnaut Climate Change Review.