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5609.0 - Housing Finance, Australia, Feb 2015 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 10/04/2015   
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From the December 2014 issue, the ABS changed its method of estimating loans to first home buyers by adjusting for under-reporting by some lenders that only report on those buyers receiving a first home owner grant. Data on first home buyers are collected by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) under the Financial Sector (Collection of Data) Act 2001. The ABS and APRA continue to work with lenders to ensure that loans to all first home buyers are identified in future, regardless of whether or not buyers receive a first home owner grant.

The model developed by the ABS for lenders who are under-reporting loans to first home buyers draws on the ratio of first home buyers to total loans for those lenders reporting correctly. The new estimation method will continue to be used in future releases. Monthly First Home Buyer Statistics are likely to be subject to future revision, as the modelled component is adjusted to reflect improved reporting by lenders.

The information paper Changes to the method of estimating loan commitments to first home buyers (cat. no. 5609.0.55.003), released on the ABS website on 4 February 2015, describes the new methodology and the extent of revisions to previously published estimates.


Statistics in this publication are currently derived from returns submitted to the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) under the Financial Sector (Collection of Data) Act 2001. The reporting population underwent changes in 2014.

To minimise the reporting load placed on businesses the monthly reporting threshold for non-banks was revised in January 2014 to provide 95 per cent asset coverage of the non-bank sector. Only non-banks with total assets at or above the reporting threshold of $200 million are required to report to APRA monthly. All banks report to APRA.

Non-banks with assets below the new threshold ceased reporting from January 2014. Some other non-banks with assets above the threshold started reporting to APRA from January 2014. The lending commitments of those which started reporting in January 2014 were excluded from the January 2014 to January 2015 published statistics pending assessment of seasonal impacts of those non-banks’ commitments on seasonally adjusted and trend series estimates. This February 2015 issue includes these finance commitments reported by non-banks that started reporting to APRA from January 2014. Revisions have been made to previously published statistics for the periods January 2014 to January 2015 to reflect the change in coverage of non-banks. A trend break in January 2014 was added to the Non-Banks' Owner Occupied Housing Commitments series published in Tables 3 and 4, due to this change in coverage.

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Commonwealth of Australia 2015

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