Business lending up, but brakes on housing

Business lending is increasing at its fastest rate in almost 20 years with a 1.6 per cent increase in December contributing to a 24.3 per cent gain over 2007. Personal credit, including margin loans, personal loans and credit cards, grew by 13.1 per cent over the year however the rate of acceleration in housing credit has slowed. During 2007 housing credit grew by 11.6 per cent, but the December growth of 0.8 per cent means that the three-month annualised growth rate eased to 10.2 per cent. This analysis is supported by figures from the Housing Industry Association which show that new home sales were down 1.3 per cent in December and 0.3 per cent lower in 2007.

Source: The Australian Financial Review