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Business lending on the rise – Equifax index

The level of business loans, trade credit, and asset finance applications rose at an annual rate of 1.6 per cent in the March quarter compared to the same period last year, according to the Quarterly Business Credit Demand Index compiled by credit reference bureau Equifax. read more

Foreign hires mostly safe in finance

HR managers at banks won't be too fussed - though their employers' credit analysts may well be – with the purged list of "eligible skilled occupations" that can be covered by a "temporary skill shortage" visa, as announced yesterday by the Australian government as it scrapped the current 457 visa scheme.Investment bankers, investment managers and investment advisers are safe, still, to hire from abroad. Bank branch managers, on the other hand, are another matter; with no more foreign imports welcome. read more

Sedgwick red lights broker commissions

A ban on accelerator reward payments and a shift to a fee-for-service payment model, funded by the banks, are highlights of Stephen Sedgwick's year-long review of retail banking remuneration. A long preview today in the AFR's Chanticleer column has Sedgwick's final recommendations. read more

Developer credit strife agitates regulators

Compromised credit conditions facing property developers and their customers (often investors) form one nexus of the Reserve Bank of Australia's half-yearly Financial Stability Review, one that extends the bothered messaging of financial regulators over recent weeks.While the FSR (released on Thursday) reports the rate of growth in credit from banks to property developers has waned, it sheds additional light on the backdrop to the macroprudential measures announced by APRA at the end of March. read more

Household insolvency adds to banking risks

Risks to financial stability "are primarily macroeconomic in nature, rather than direct risks to the stability of financial institutions", the Reserve Bank of Australia declares in its Financial Stability Review, released on Thursday.The April 2017 edition of this half-yearly report shares public domain versions of analysis no doubt considered this year among the Council of Financial Regulators, culminating in APRA's outline of additional macroprudential measures at the end of March.Around one-third of borrowers have either no accrued buffer or a buffer of less than one month's repayments, the RBA said. read more