Trending Financial News 1 October

Sydney property prices are rising – at last

After two years of falling home values, Sydney house prices are now rising again as buyer activity picks up. Sydney home values are still more than 10 per cent below their 2017 peak, but CoreLogic data shows Sydney prices have risen for the past three months.

Premium Sydney suburbs are leading the way with property prices in Vaucluse up 24 per cent in the 12 months to August. Genworth reported that 75 per cent of prospective Sydney buyers believe that now is a good time to buy. Read more about the property outlook for October at InfoChoice.

Bank Australia cuts savings rates

Bank Australia (formerly mecu) has cut savings account interest rates effective from today. Bank Australia announced cuts of 0.10 percentage points on its Bonus Saver and mySaver accounts. The Online Saver account rate has been cut from 1.20 per cent to 1.0 per cent.

The Bank Australia Bonus Saver account is now paying 2.0 per cent (maximum) if you make at least $100 in deposits and no withdrawals within a month.

Compare savings accounts from Australia’s banks and credit unions at InfoChoice.

ASIC announces review of school banking

The corporate watchdog, the Australian Securities and Investment Commission has announced a public review of school banking programs and I asking parents and the public to make submissions.

“There is a long history of school banking programs in Australian schools,” said ASIC Commissioner Sean Hughes.

“It is important for ASIC to understand the range and extent of impacts that school banking programs can have on students, parents and school communities.”

Compare savings accounts for children at InfoChoice.

It is expected the review will be completed in early 2020.

Dollarmites school banking under fire

Consumer lobby group Choice is calling for parents to join its campaign to oust Commonwealth Bank’s Dollarmites program from schools.

“Commonwealth Bank doesn’t care about education,” said CHOICE spokesman Jonathan Brown.

“Dollarmites program is a thinly veiled marketing program to turn our kids into customers for life,” said Mr Brown.

“ASIC’s new research shows that these bank marketing programs have little evidence they work.”

CHOICE is encouraging parents to make a submission to ASIC’s review of school banking programs.

Plenty of school savers outperform Commbank

ASIC’s announcement of a review into school banking has attracted attention onto the Commonwealth Bank’s Youth Saver account.

Commonwealth Bank’s Youth Saver account is currently paying a maximum interest rate of 2.10 per cent pa (base rate 0.15 per cent pa) when at least one deposit and no withdrawals are made in a month.

25 savings accounts for children (currently listed on InfoChoice’s database of 145 institutions) have base rates above 0.15 per cent. 8 accounts have maximum bonus interest rates over the Commonwealth Bank’s 2.10 per cent pa.

Compare children’s savings accounts at InfoChoice.

Which Big Four bank has the top term deposit rates?

Australia’s Big Four banks – ANZ, NAB, Westpac and CBA – all offer a range of term deposit accounts with terms lasting from 30 days to five years. ANZ term deposits offer an interest rate of one per cent for a six–month period. The minimum deposit is $5,000.

A 6-month CBA term deposit is paying an interest rate of 1.45 per cent for a minimum deposit of $5,000. NAB has five month term deposits (150 days) paying 1.50 per cent pa at the moment and Westpac has an interest rate of 1.30 per cent for six months.

Read more about current term deposit rates at InfoChoice.

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