Loan arrears continue to rise

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The proportion of Australian housing loans in arrears has increased for prime and non-conforming residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS).

According to Standard & Poor’s (S&P) Performance Index (SPIN), arrears levels for prime RMBS rose to 0.98 per cent in December 2015 from 0.92 per cent in November, while non-conforming RMBS levels increased to 4.63 per cent from 4.22 per cent a month earlier.

Non-bank lenders recorded the lowest arrears level of all originator types at 0.70 per cent, while regional banks had the highest arrears level at 1.74 per cent.

The major banks reported in December that arrears of more than 30 days increased by 27 per cent year-on-year, despite a rise in outstanding balances of over 50 per cent during the period.

Meanwhile, non-bank lenders reported a 23 per cent decline in arrears, despite a 3 per cent contradiction in outstanding balances.

S&P credit analyst Narelle Coneybeare said while most categories saw increases in loan arrears during December, prime and non-conforming arrears remained lower than 12 months earlier.

“We expect further increases in arrears in the coming quarter, typical of the post-Christmas months,” she said.

[Related: Mortgage demand hits eight-year high]

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