SYDNEY, April 2 Home prices in Australia's major
cities rose for a third straight month in March, the best
quarterly performance since mid-2010 and another sign lower
mortgage rates are gaining traction in the economy.
Figures from property consultant RP Data-Rismark showed
dwelling prices climbed 1.3 percent in March, from February. For
the whole of the first quarter, prices were up a solid 2.8
percent, the largest increase in almost three years.
Since bottoming out in May last year, prices have risen by
The gains in March were broad based with Sydney prices up
1.5 percent, Brisbane 1 percent, Perth 3.4 percent and Melbourne
The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) cut interest rates to
record-matching lows of 3 percent last year in part to help
revive activity in the housing market, and particularly
The central bank holds its April policy meeting on Tuesday
and is widely expected to keep rates at 3 percent given evidence
that past easing is working through the economy.
Sydney was again the most expensive Australian city with a
median home price of A$550,500 ($574,000), followed by Darwin at
A$516,713. The median price for all eight capital cities in
Australia was A$465,000.
(Reporting by Wayne Cole)