Approvals resume downtrend
January tends to be a quiet month for unit approvals, and it certainly was this year in Sydney (1,083), Melbourne (1,059), and Brisbane (337), as the downtrend resumes.
House approvals have generally now stabilised, except in Sydney where supply still needs to be absorbed.
Overall, seasonally adjusted dwelling approvals slumped to just 13,000 for the lowest result since February 2013.
Public sector approvals barely feature these days.
And the high rise downturn in Sydney and Brisbane continues.
Less well reported has been a huge surge in non-residential activity in Victoria, including for healthcare centres and other commercial ventures, which has helped to lift the total value of building approved a little, despite the residential downturn.
The Reserve Bank's liaison thinks that it can see across to other side of the trough for the construction sector - at least, it did back in October - but we're not there yet with residential approvals still weakening.
The Reserve Bank cut interest rates by 25 basis points to 0.50 per cent this afternoon, with no fewer than nine references to the coronavirus in its statement.
Westpac and Commonwealth Bank immediately passed on the full 25 basis points to variable rate home loan customers.
Earnings must surely cop a beasting as a result of stalled activity, so it's hard to see how extremely high global stock valuations can be sustained (IMO).