Mortgage News January 21, 2020
National Housing Market Gets Hotter

New Zealand house prices are moving north as the property market springs into action. The average property value in Auckland was up 1.3% over the last three months, with values in the regions moving ahead at an even faster rate. While Auckland is still more affordable than it was a year ago, national values are up on an annual basis and first home-owners are struggling to see a way forward.


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The Science of Gift Giving

Christmas is on the doorstep, which means tough decisions, budget allocations, and last-minute shopping. If you're like most people, then you probably approach gift giving with a combination of random luck and hours walking the streets. As it turns out, however, there is a clear and robust science behind gift giving, with people who receive gifts much more appreciative when decisions are based on thoughtful consideration and long-term value rather than immediate satisfaction and price.  


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Changes to Bank Capital Rules

The RBNZ recently finalised its capital review in an effort to safeguard banks against economic shocks. Retail banks will be expected to hold $20 billion in capital at all times, which will have implications for small and big banks alike. While this move is a great insurance policy designed to reduce the potential of a public bailout, it could also lead to more expensive mortgages, lower deposit rates, and more stringent lending criteria.


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Negative Effects of Bushfire Smoke

Bushfires remain prevalent across Australia, with smoky conditions possibly becoming more normal as climate change takes hold. Rural communities in NSW have been inundated by smoke for weeks, with Sydney also choked by bad air and dangerous smoke particles. While everyone is aware of the destructive power of fire when it comes to harming property and affecting lives, the true dangers of bushfire smoke are only starting to be understood.


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How to Increase Your Mental Bandwidth

The modern world can be busy and stressful, with people often experiencing a lack of time and mental resources. It's easy to make bad decisions in such an environment, as our mental bandwidth narrows and we focus on the wrong tasks. While some people thrive under pressure, for others, busy routines and ongoing stress lead to procrastination and reduced productivity. As it turns out, achieving a healthy work-life balance is a great way to increase our attention span and upgrade our cognitive bandwidth.


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New Zealand & The Green Economy

Whether you know it as sustainable finance or the green economy, ethical and environmental issues are having an important impact on the New Zealand economy. As politicians and multinationals struggle to make sense of the new world, institutional investors are rapidly moving towards a more agile and greener economy. While strong growth continues to be the main objective, clever investors are increasingly looking for long-term opportunities that align with their vision for a zero-carbon future.


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Hot Household Products This Christmas

Once again, Christmas is just around the corner and you're probably not ready. Whether you need to buy five gifts or fifty, new product releases leave us spoilt for choice as we head into the holiday period. From household tech and lifestyle products through to media subscriptions and kids' toys, let's take a close look at the best new household products for Christmas 2019.


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Fastest Rising Areas in New Zealand

New Zealand property values are on the rise, with record prices seen in some parts of the country and the national median value also in new territory. Strong demand is helping to drive up property prices, as the Auckland market lifts despite a decline in sales. While national inventory and sales volumes are both down, data points towards strong conditions and renewed optimism as we head into 2020.


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Why Do We Gain Weight As We Age

Gaining weight as we age has become completely normalised in modern society. Men and women in their late 30s and beyond are almost expected to gain weight, even though we've never understood exactly why. While various genetic and lifestyle factors influence weight gain, there are age-related considerations that can't be accounted for by eating or exercise habits alone. As it turns out, how we store and process fat changes substantially as we get older.


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Modern Work & the Adaptability Quotient

Modern workers are always looking for that little something extra to help them forge ahead in their careers. Whether you're a mechanic, a salesperson, or a surgeon, making moves in your chosen field was always thought to be a combination of smarts and hard work. As it turns out, however, additional capacity may also be needed. Along with regular and emotional intelligence, the adaptability quotient (AQ) has recently been recognised as a key driver of success. 


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> In This Issue...
1. National Housing Market Gets Hotter
2. The Science of Gift Giving
3. Changes to Bank Capital Rules
4. Negative Effects of Bushfire Smoke
5. How to Increase Your Mental Bandwidth
6. New Zealand & The Green Economy
7. Hot Household Products This Christmas
8. Fastest Rising Areas in New Zealand
9. Why Do We Gain Weight As We Age
10. Modern Work & the Adaptability Quotient

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