House debates

Thursday, 9 March 2023

Statements by Members

Interest Rates

1:49 pm

Photo of Tony ZappiaTony Zappia (Makin, Australian Labor Party) Share this | | Hansard source

More than half of Australian homeowners have a mortgage loan. The average home loan is around $600,000. This week's 10th consecutive Reserve Bank cash rate increase, if passed on in full, will add to the financial pressures of homeowners with a loan, many of whom are already struggling. Over the same period, depositors with the major banks did not see their interest returns keep pace with the Reserve Bank cash rate increases. I note there's an ACCC inquiry into this anomaly.

Last financial year, the four major banks made $28 billion in profits. This year, they are projected to make $33 billion in profits, which will be a record. Adding to community resentment, while the major banks increase mortgage interest rates and don't pass on in full interest rates on deposits, they continue to close branches, remove ATMs and cut services. Australian banks have the benefit of Australian government guarantees on deposits. I call on the banks to stop profiteering, show some corporate social responsibility and not add the latest cash rate increases onto home loans just so they can boost their already very healthy profits.