Rate hikes: ANZ, BNZ and Westpac follow ASB

ANZ, BNZ and Westpac have followed ASB in hiking short and long-term mortgage rates as home loans move up from record lows.

Effective this morning, the three major banks announced a raft of mortgage rate increases across 18 month to five year terms, as the days of record low rates look numbered.

ANZ has hiked one to three year fixed rates.

ANZ's one year special jumps by 31 basis points to 2.50% and its 18 month rises 39 basis points to 2.74%. Its two year special rises to 2.90%, while its three year moves up to 3.24%, an increase of 25 basis points. 

The bank's standard loans increase by the same number of basis points. 

BNZ has also confirmed a series of rate increases. The bank has increased six month to five year rates across the board. Its one year classic loan increases to 2.55%, while its one year standard rate rises to 3.15%.

BNZ's new two year classic rate increases to 2.95%. 

Westpac, meanwhile, has increased six month rates by 30 basis points, one year rates by 36 basis points, 18 month rates by 30 basis points, and two year rates by 30 basis points.

In addition, it has raised three year rates by 30 basis points, and four and five year rates by 10 basis points. 

The rate hikes come amid an improving economy. Economists responding to TMM's OCR Preview Survey last week unanimously agreed that rates had troughed in this market cycle.

ASB, the first mover on higher rates, said it had raised interest rates due to an improving economic outlook. 

The increases follow growing speculation that the Reserve Bank will begin to increase the official cash rate next month, as the NZ economy roars back into life.

Wholesale markets have priced up in recent months in anticipation of an OCR increase, making borrowing costs more expensive for the retail banks. 

Following this week's changes, ANZ has the cheapest one year rate of the big four at 2.50%. Westpac leads the rest of the big four on two year rates, at 2.89%.

Kiwibank, which has not moved rates in line with the rest of the big four yet, is now priced around 30 basis points cheaper than the big four on many terms. 

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