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Media Release - 17 09 2012

Australian home loan market heats up as Citibank lowers fixed rates again

First bank to offer five-year rates below 5.90 per cent

Sydney, 17 September 2012: Citibank has lowered its five-year fixed-rate home loan by 35 basis points, making it the first lender to offer five-year fixed rates below 5.90 per cent. This is despite no movement on official rates by the Reserve Bank. From Monday, Citibank will offer new customers 5.55 per cent for one-year, two-year, and three-year fixed rate home loans. Citibank's four-year and five-year rate will drop to 5.89 per cent. In the last month alone, Citibank has reduced its one-year and two-year fixed rates by 44 basis points.

Vibha Coburn, Head of Mortgages at Citibank in Australia, said Citibank's competitive fixed rates are now cheaper or on par with the bank's variable rates, providing customers more certainty in the current turbulent economic environment.

"This is the first time we have had our five-year fixed rates on par with our competitive variable rates since the yield curve inversed last year. Customers with the view that variable rates could reduce even further in the short-term may still be better off locking in a lower fixed rate now; as rates are likely to increase in the medium to long term," Ms Coburn said.

Citibank is also offering a free 60-day rate lock which allows customers to guarantee these low fixed rates for 60 days after application.

"The 60-day rate lock provides even further certainty to customers but I'd encourage anyone who is actively seeking a home loan to move quickly to ensure they secure rates at the current levels," Ms Coburn said. "Existing mortgage holders should also revisit the market to weigh up the benefits provided by different lenders and fixed or variable rates."

This recent rate movement follows Citibank's launch of the first fixed rate mortgage combined with a personal line of credit. "The Ready Credit and Fixed Home Loan Package provides customers with the certainty of a fixed rate mortgage with the flexibility of a personal line of credit at a very competitive rate." Ms Coburn said.

"Citibank is also currently providing a refund of application and switching costs for new to bank customers to up to $1,000."


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