Lending Commitments drop sharply in April

9 June 2020

The value of new loan commitments for fixed term personal finance fell sharply in April, down -24.8 per cent, seasonally adjusted, according to the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics figures released today.


ABS Chief Economist, Bruce Hockman, said: “This was the largest fall in the history of the series, which started in July 2002, and was driven by a 37.8 per cent fall in the value of loan commitments for road vehicles.


“Lending institutions reported that COVID-19 impacts were being seen through both reduced demand from borrowers and tighter lending criteria.”


The value of new loan commitments for owner occupier housing fell -5.0 per cent, while investor housing fell -4.2 per cent. The number of owner occupier first home buyer loan commitments fell 3.8 per cent.

“COVID-19 operational impacts experienced by some lending institutions resulted in a backlog of March housing loan applications being processed in April, which moderated the April fall in loan commitments,” Mr Hockman said.