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Banks loan deferrals drop as pandemic support scheme ends

Eliza Bavin
·2-min read
This combination of photos taken in Sydney on November 30, 2017 show the signs of the
(Source: PETER PARKS/AFP via Getty Images)

Australia’s big four banks officially ended home loan deferral programs 31 March with the latest figures from the Australian Banking Association (ABA) showing just 3,170 mortgage deferrals still in place.

ABA CEO Anna Bligh said the drop in the number of deferrals is testament to the country’s swift recovery after facing a one-in-100- year pandemic.

"The fact that unemployment is lower than expected and the economy has rebounded faster than we anticipated is great news for the vast majority of homeowners and small businesses."

And the ABA said it will continue to work with members to support any Aussies struggling due to the pandemic despite the deferral scheme ending.

“Banks will continue to support those households and businesses still doing it tough this year, taking a fair and compassionate approach to get people through the pandemic,” Bligh said

When the pandemic hit last year, Australia’s banks agreed to defer mortgage and small business loans for up to six months for customers who were experiencing COVID-related hardship.

In July 2020, banks announced a four-month extension to the program beyond the original September end date.

At the peak, over 854,606 mortgage and small business loans were deferred. As of March this year, that had shrunk to just 4569.

As of March 31, just 0.5 per cent of loans remained deferred, accounting for just 0.03 per cent of all facilities.

At present, there are still 3170 mortgages and 508 business loans that remain deferred

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