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Loan volumes to rise in Q1 2009: broker sentiment survey

Staff Reporter 2 minute read

While the challenging conditions of 2008 are unlikely to disappear overnight brokers are cautiously optimistic about the first quarter of 2009, a new survey focused on third-party distribution has revealed.


Mortgage Business’ Q4 Sentiment Survey – which offers the industry the first real insight into the perceptions of the third-party distribution channel – showed a majority of brokers expect loan volumes to increase, or at least remain steady, in the approaching quarter.

Of the 631 survey respondents, 50.1 per cent believed loan volumes would rise; 28.7 per cent expected them to remain the same.

Just over 21 per cent expected volumes to decline.

A significant 75.3 per cent of respondents also expected the RBA’s current rate – which  was 5.25 per cent at the time the survey was conducted – would have a positive impact on home loan demand in the first quarter of 2009.

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With rates now one per cent lower following the RBA December rate cut – and with a further rate cut expected in February or March – brokers’ optimism could be well founded. 

Brendan O’Donnell, Choice Aggregation Services chief executive officer, said that while 2009 would still be challenging he was confident business would pick up.

“Our members are ‘cautiously optimistic’ – we believe we have reached the bottom of the cycle in terms of lending volumes and hope to see an upswing in the first half of the year,” he said.

Strong demand for property would keep the market on track, he said.

“We are going to experience challenging economic times in the year ahead but people need homes and immigration remains strong. This, coupled with a lack of property in Australia, will drive the property market to recovery."

Unemployment did however remain an unknown, he cautioned.

For complete details and analysis on the results of the Mortgage Business Q4 Sentiment Survey see the December issue of Mortgage Business magazine on desks this week.

Loan volumes to rise in Q1 2009: broker sentiment survey
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