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Westpactrust Announces Interest Rate Triple Dip

 Floating rate drops 0.50 percent
 Lowest one year fixed rate in almost 20 years
 Lowest five year fixed rate ever offered by a major NZ bank

WestpacTrust announced today interest rate reductions that set record lows, including a New Zealand first for fixed mortgage rates, in its changes to both fixed and floating rates. These reductions follow the Reserve Bank’s easing of the official cash rate by 50 basis points.

WestpacTrust dropped its floating mortgage rates by 0.50 percent this morning to 6.70 percent per annum. The bank also dropped its one year fixed rate to 5.95 percent per annum, the bank’s lowest in around 20 years.

And in a first since fixed rates were introduced, the bank also dropped its five year fixed rate to 6.99 percent per annum. This is the first time a five year fixed rate below 7 percent per annum has ever been offered by any of the major banks in New Zealand.

Today’s reduction is the fifth time WestpacTrust has dropped its floating interest rate this year.

Tim Harrington, General Manager Marketing for WestpacTrust says homeowners are receiving significant savings when current rates are compared with levels at this time last year.

“On a $100,000 floating home loan over 20 years, this 0.50 percent drop means a saving of about $111 per month over what customers were paying a year ago,” he says.

“Compared with the peak floating rates of the 1990s, the customer is saving over $550 per month on that same loan.

“We believe it’s important to pass on benefits as soon as possible,” said Mr Harrington. “It’s particularly pleasing to offer some good news for customers during what have been very uncertain times.”

WestpacTrust Chief Economist Adrian Orr says today’s OCR reduction by the Reserve Bank gives New Zealand a strong buffer against adverse global conditions as we head towards next year.

“While the New Zealand economy is set to continue performing well in the next six months, with low unemployment, ongoing wage growth and net inward migration, lower interest rates will ensure a positive Christmas season.

“Today’s cuts are an ongoing insurance for New Zealand against the current harsh global economic environment,” said Mr Orr.

WestpacTrust has lead interest rate reductions throughout 2001, announcing drops within hours of Reserve Bank official cash rate announcements.


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