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It’s not often the nation’s top banker admits he doesn’t know what happens next.

But Philip Lowe of the Reserve Bank announced this week that low wages, high lending and competition for jobs from overseas and technology meant we’d entered “an uncertain chapter”.

And the government’s hints at an income tax cut wouldn’t solve anything, according to Dr Lowe.

Scary stuff!

And there is no relief in sight for savers, either – though it’s good news for leveraged home buyers.  According to The Australian, reading the tea leaves, a rise in lending rates is “years away”.

Read this if you are travelling this Christmas

Travellers shouldn’t buy insurance over the counter if they want to save, according to a survey. Especially families with kids.

According to numbers revealed by Fairfax media, price comparison site mozo.com.au reveals a dollar discrepancy of up to 205 per cent between insurance bought through an airline or holiday booking site compared with an online travel insurance specialist.

According to Mozo, a family of four travelling to the United States for 15 days this Christmas was quoted $560 by one airline compared to just $183 from an online travel insurer.

So shop around!

Banks told:  stop lending money

The body that regulates bank lending APRA is warning that mortgage arrears are at an all time high, and has called on banks to introduce stricter lending rules.

Hard, when you consider that lending money is the major way banks make a buck.

Loans are calculated as a proportion of income.  Banks aren’t supposed to lend more than you can comfortably pay back.

ASIC has launched  a case against Westpac claiming the bank is using a statistical cost of living calculation instead of numbers from the real world.

According to APRA, competition from Fintec and newly launched companies is forcing banks to drop their standards.

Barking up the wrong tree?

OK,  we know we’ve all gone pet crazy.  But new research reveals that 60 per cent of the pets we own are dogs.

And renters are now being asked to produce “resumes” for their pooches so body corporates will allow them to live in buildings.

Of course, there is a site for this.  Rent.com.au claims to have 50,000 pet resumes on file. Here are a few of their research findings:

  • More than 50,000 renters have created a ‘Pet Resume’ for their pets to help them secure a rental
  • 68% of all pets with a Pet Resume on Rent.com.au are dogs
  • A higher percentage of renters in Tasmania (39%) and NT (31%) own pets than anywhere else in the country
  • Victoria (11%) and NSW (11%) renters own the fewest pets
  • Renters aged 45-54 are the most likely to own a pet