Summer has arrived and at its final meeting for 2016 today, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) has elected to keep the official cash rate on hold yet again.
Whilst some forecasters were predicting a cash rate cut today, as an early Christmas present, most were expecting the official cash rate to remain on hold as the RBA waits for new economic data and global financial developments before making its next move.
The next RBA will not meet again until February 2017. It may be a bit too early to predict their next move, and forecasters are divided. Some anticipate rates to stay on hold for most of 2017, whilst others predict that low inflation, soft wages growth and sluggish employment data will prompt another RBA cash rate cut as early as the next RBA meeting in February.
Meanwhile, lenders have been adjusting their interest rates outside of the RBA's rate movements. Quite a few have recently increased rates on fixed rate products, particularly for 3 or 5 year terms.
It also seems that the variation in home loan rates is widening between different lenders.