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First-Time Buyers Return to Australia’s Housing Market

Loan approvals for newbies jumped to their highest level in five years

More Australians are able to get on the property ladder as policy and regulatory changes over the last year cool investment activity. In New South Wales, home to Sydney, monthly first-home buyer loan approvals have jumped 60 percent since the state government started offering discounts on stamp duty in July, says Australia & New Zealand Banking Group. The rush of new owners is putting an upward pressure on prices for lower-end properties even as Sydney’s housing market cools, ANZ economist Daniel Gradwell said.

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