Christmas comes early with rates on hold for the rest of summer

first_imgRBA Governor Philip Lowe won’t be cowed into moving rates. Picture: Hollie Adams/The AustralianMortgage broker network 1300HomeLoan managing director John Kolenda said official interest rates have been at the record low of 1.5 per cent since August last year.“The RBA hasn’t lifted its cash rate for more than seven years and a generation of mortgage holders hasn’t experienced a hike in official interest rates,” he said.“While it has come under recent pressure to begin increasing the cash rate from none other than the Organisation for Economic Development (OECD), the RBA’s interest rate strategy since the Global Financial Crisis should be commended.”More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus22 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market22 hours agoMr Lowe acknowledged there was some change in international market conditions: “In a number of economies there has been some withdrawal of monetary stimulus, although financial conditions remain quite expansionary.”But Australia has its own set of circumstances to deal with, chief of which for mortgage holders was the fact that “growth in housing debt has been outpacing the slow growth in household income for some time”, according to Mr Lowe. The Reserve Bank of Australia board room where monetary policy decisions are made. Picture: RBA/Supplied“To address the medium-term risks associated with high and rising household indebtedness, APRA has introduced a number of supervisory measures. Credit standards have been tightened in a way that has reduced the risk profile of borrowers.”He said nationwide measures of housing prices were little changed over the past six months, with conditions easing in Sydney. “In the eastern capital cities, a considerable additional supply of apartments is scheduled to come on stream over the next couple of years. Rent increases remain low in most cities.”Housing Industry Association senior economist Shane Garrett said 2018 would begin with “very low” rates.“Australia will kick off 2018 with ultra-low interest rates following this afternoon’s decision from the RBA … The current interest rate environment is remarkable in that borrowing costs are very low.”He said RBA had to keep rates low at this time.“There is little basis for expecting interest rate rises over the short term. Price inflation is weak, wages growth is close to a 20-year low and the pace of economic expansion is sub-par.” FOLLOW SOPHIE FOSTER ON FACEBOOK FREE: GET THE COURIER-MAIL’S REALESTATE NEWS DIRECT TO INBOX A family looks at properties for sale as Australia’s central bank left interest rates at a record low, sparing the country a rude shock ahead of Christmas. Picture: AFP PHOTO/PETER PARKSTHE Reserve Bank is under growing international pressure to move on interest rates after Tuesday’s record hold position — but it decided to give Aussies an early Christmas present instead.The RBA won’t be cowed into moving on rates too soon, with Governor Philip Lowe confirming “the board decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 1.5 per cent” after its December monetary policy meeting.“The low level of interest rates is continuing to support the Australian economy,” he said. “The Board judged that holding the stance of monetary policy unchanged at this meeting would be consistent with sustainable growth in the economy and achieving the inflation target over time.”The decision means rates will be on hold for the rest of summer with the next RBA board meeting not scheduled until February next year — a mirror image of the previous longest stint that RBA sat on the sidelines between August 2013 and February 2015.last_img read more

Swimming and diving to host pair of meets

first_imgMaking a splash · The men’s swimming and diving team improved to 3-0 on the season after its victory over Hawaii last weekend at home. – Mariya Dondonyan | Daily TrojanThe men’s and women’s swimming teams have an opportunity to gain momentum and confidence early in the season this weekend, when women’s swimming (2-1)  faces Oregon State  and No. 11 men’s swimming (3-0) takes on Cal State Bakersfield this Friday.The men are coming off a home opening win over Hawaii with a dominating 217-108.5 showing. USC started off strongly by winning the 400y medley relay. In addition, Junior Michael Domagala  won two events, the 100y free and the 200 IM.The Trojans’ dominance continued with a pair of sweeps. USC swimmers came in first, second and third place in both the 200y back as well as the 200y breast. The 200y free relay team  finished out the meet with a win as well.The Women of Troy also defeated  Hawaii 253-79, but fell to North Carolina State 190-144 last Saturday. Swimmers Chelsea Chenault, Anika Apostalon and Riley Scott each won events. Apostalon earned a NCAA “B” cut time in the 100y free, and Scott earned one in the 200y breast.Chenault herself is coming off a win in the 500y free last weekend. She has found herself in a leadership position on the team this year, as many upperclassmen are redshirting this semester.“I’ve had to step up more as a leader,” she said. “It’s huge for me to step in and help out because there are a lot of underclassmen on this team.”This inexperience served as a weakness last week when the Women of Troy lost to NC State, according to coach Dave Salo.“We have 13 freshman women, which is a huge class. They are learning what collegiate swimming is all about,” Salo said. “I don’t think I prepared them mentally for NC State.”Given that the team is young, there is much to improve on after the loss to the Wolfpack, Salo said.“We identified weaknesses last week on walls and turns,” Salo said. “They are sloppy and slow and not as strong as they could have been.”Though midterm season poses another challenge to the men’s and women’s swim teams, Salo has been able to keep them focused.“It’s a tough time with midterms,” Salo said. “The team is tired with training; their focus is hampered at times, but it’s part of my job to bark at them and get them back.”Nonetheless, Salo’s system ensures that the team and each swimmer is  growing every week.“We are looking at personal improvements over the season so far,” he said. “We want to see improvements in competition and focus and effort the following week.”The Oregon State Beavers  are struggling this year with a current record of 0-4. Their last match resulted in a 91-140 loss to Vanderbilt. Nonetheless, Chenault does not underestimate them.“They are a good team,” Chenault said. “We race them every year. We know what they have. We are growing each week. They are a capable team though, and its gonna be a really good meet.”Though CSU Bakersfield started out the season with a loss to Grand Canyon, their swimmers gained some momentum last weekend at the Malibu invitational.Salo said that the Runners have some good pieces, but he is confident that the men’s team will win Friday.“Bakersfield is a strong mid major and our guys are weak right now because some guys are sitting out for Olympics, but we’ve got a strong, good squad,” Salo  said.This weekend will be a test of how both the men’s and women’s teams have improved. Both matches are at 2 p.m. in the Uytengsu Aquatics Center on Friday.last_img read more

Celeb captains announced for 2018 BetBright Cup

first_img Mark Wilson: How FSB is meeting the recreational cricket punter’s demands August 20, 2020 Share Betfred extends World Snooker Championship deal until 2022 August 17, 2020 StumbleUpon Share Related Articles ITV secures three-year British racing broadcast deal August 5, 2020 Submit BetBright has announced its duo of celebrity sporting captains for its fiercely contested 2018 Cheltenham Festival charity cup.Ex England cricket spin bowler Phil Tufnell and former snooker star Ken Doherty have been appointed as captains of Great Britain and Ireland respectively, as they bid for bragging right.The trophy is to be awarded to the country with the greatest number of Cheltenham Festival winners, with Ireland current title holders.A crushing 19-9 defeat was handed out at the Gloucestershire turf last year, despite Great Britain starting as favourites.Rich Ricci, BetBright chairman, commented: “Cheltenham Festival is the horse racing event of the year, an exciting time for racing fans from both sides of the Irish Sea. “The Irish contingent will be looking to retain the BetBright Cup for the first time and I am sure that the British trainers and horses will be wanting to avenge last year’s heavy defeat.”“The BetBright Cup is a fun complement to the serious sport on the track, allowing racing fans to get behind their country’s contenders throughout the weekend and this year we will be making a donation of £10,000 to the Injured Jockeys Fund on behalf of the winning captain”.Tufnell, who went on to be a regular face of British television following the culmination of his professional cricket career, said of the event and his captaincy: “Cheltenham Festival is my favourite sporting event of the year and I’m delighted to be captaining Great Britain again this year. “Last year’s defeat was almost as crushing as the England side in the Ashes, but I am predicting a resurgence of British winners and I can’t see anything beyond a whitewash victory for the red, white and blue.”Doherty, who in 1997 triumphed in the World Snooker Championship, added  “What a festival it was last year, the trophy was heading across the Irish Sea before the last day of racing had finished last year and I can’t see anything beyond another resounding victory for the Irish. “The main man, Ruby Walsh, will be back from injury and I’m backing Faugheen to be the first 10 year old or older since Sea Pigeon in 1981 to win the Champion Hurdle.”last_img read more