THE head of a south-west credit union says record low official interest rates is bad news for savers and unlikely to have much impact for borrowers.
The Reserve Bank of Australia lowered the official interest rate to 0.1 per cent on Tuesday, down from an already record-low 0.25 per cent.
RBA Govoner Philip Lowe said the measure would lower financing costs for borrowers and contribute to a lower exchange rate.
But Warrnambool-based South West Credit chief David Brown said the change in the official interest rate was unlikely to have much affect while business and consumer confidence remained low.
"It's very bad news for those relying on their term deposits and savings for income. It's unlikely to mean too much for borrowers in as much as rates had already factored in that adjustment," Mr Brown said.
"Overall it is not good news in as much as it is reflective of the state of the economy."
He said the bank would review the market in coming weeks and decide whether to cut interest rates for customers.
Warrnambool real estate agent Brian O'Halloran and Co's Brian Hancock said the change might drive the housing market "further".
"It will certainly drive the property market if the banks fall in line and give a reduction," he said.
But Mr Hancock added lending rates were already very low.
"It's down to the bone already," he said.
"The banks still have to have a margin there to be able to operate like everyone else. There won't be much of a reduction in rates."
He believed conditions for first homebuyers were some of the best they had been 'in the last 50 or 60 years".
"All they need to be able to do is meet their commitment and they're right," Mr Hancock said.
Meanwhile, Mr Brown said South West Credit had seen more than half of people who had deferred loan repayments during the pandemic resume those installments.
"The south west seems to be inline with the national average for regional areas. Our experience is that the majority of people have returned to servicing their loans," he said.
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