The Australian market was hit hard by falling bank stocks and a BHP punished by investors because of its spinoff South32.
There was no new fundamental data to move the market but there’s been increasing discussion on how to keep lending at sensible levels in housing.
ASIC chairman Greg Medcraft, in an interview with the AFR, warned buyers they might be in a bubble and not realise it.
He is “quite worried” about Sydney and Melbourne prices, with the house price to average income ratio at an all-time high and rates at an all time low.
New Zealand also announced a new tax of up to 33% on any property which is bought and sold within two years of purchase.
Also having a negative impact on sentiment, stockbroker BBY went into voluntary administration, with its 170 staff the board of directors unable to secure investors to inject additional capital into the business.
On the Australian market, the big banks dragged the ASX 200 index down, led by the ANZ which was weaker by 2.6% to $32.34. Macquarie Bank was trading ex-dividend and lost 3.27% to $79.60.
BHP lost 7% to $30.20 as South32 listed at $2.14, at the bottom end of expectations. The combined share price of the two companies is slightly below BHP’s Friday close of $32.49.
Rio Tinto was down almost 1% to $57.53.
Retailers were also taking a hit with Woolworths weaker by 2.76% at $1.51 and Dick Smith down 2.24% at $2.18.
In the region, the Nikkei 225 was up 0.7%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was down more than 1% and Shanghai up 0.22%.