Star commentators of the Australian home loan and property market

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Put your money where your mouth is! For some of these financial commentators that’s not always such a good idea. We take you through some of the loudest mouths in the home loan and housing industry.

Christopher Joye

Christopher Joye

Current Role: Executive Director & Strategic Advisor to Rismark International & Yellow Brick Roads Funds Management & Research Affiliate, The Centre for ideas and The Economy Melbourne University.

Previous Roles: Director, The Menzies Research Centre.

You can find his comments in: His blog Aussie Macro Moments, Switzer (Expert), Property Observer (Economy Observer), Smart Company, Crikey.

A keen commentator who reacts to economic developments within seconds of their occurrence.

Joye shot to fame in 2003 for his work on housing affordability for the Howard government and has been a respected name in economic circles since.

His blog, Aussie Macro Moments, acts as home-base for all of Joye’s views and opinions – and with getting there being as simple as a click of the mouse, laziness is no excuse for not accessing one of the keenest economic minds in the country.

Connect with Christopher: Follow on Twitter | Subscribe to his blog

Tim Lawless

Tim Lawless

Current Role: National Research Director for RP Data.

Previous Roles: Research Director at Colliers International, Research Director at PRDnationwide, Market analyst and consultant at RP Data, Consultant at Marketshare.

You can find his comments in: SMH, Property Observer, Real Estate Business, RP Data Blog

Lawless’s analysis of home values and uptake enable him to comment on the mindset of investors and how this relates to the mean value of a residential property.

Some of Lawless’s topics include the relationship between housing demand and population growth and the fluctuating value of your home.

He is active on the social media front, his Twitter feed has some links to great articles and he can be surprisingly funny – that’s right, folks, there’s humour in economics.

Connect with Tim: Follow on Twitter | Follow RP Data on Twitter | Subscribe to the RP Data Blog

John Edwards

John Edwards

Current Role: CEO Residex.

Previous Roles: He has been at Residex for over twenty years.

You can find his comments in: Your Money Your Call, Switzer Media, Private Media (Smart Company, Property Observer) and all reputable publications.

Not the TV psychic who communicates with the dead, Australia’s John Edwards is head and founder of Residex, the yin to RP Data’s yang.

His company provides the banks and everyone else with a stake in the housing industry, with data used for working out the price of your home now and into the future. The Residex Report is available for a fee, but his opinions can be found for free across a variety of publications including the Residex blog. it features CEO updates, data from the capital cities and links to the newsletter, reports and Edwards’s appearances in the media.

Connect with John: Follow on Twitter | Subscribe to his Blog

Paul Bloxham

Paul Bloxham

Current Role: Chief Economist for Australia & New Zealand HSBC

Previous Roles: Economist, Reserve Bank of Australia Economic Analysis Department.

You can find his comments in: Switzer Media, Private Media quoted in all major news publications.

Prior to his role at HSBC he was an economic analyst with the Reserve Bank. Bloxham’s name frequently appears across the media as journalists seek his reading into the latest announcement from the Reserve Bank, or the lack thereof.

As chief economist for the world’s local bank, it’s safe to assume he knows what he’s talking about. His predictions about a cut in the cash rate by June 2012 were on the money.

Connect with Paul: Linkedin

Bernard Salt

Bernard Salt

Current Role: Partner, KPMG & Social Editor, The Australian.

Previous Roles: Research Economist, Geelong Regional Commission, Consultant, RT Jebb & Associates, Manager & Consultant, Coopers & Lybrand Consulting.

You can find his comments in: Research Economist, Geelong Regional Commission, Consultant, RT Jebb & Associates, Manager & Consultant, Coopers & Lybrand Consulting.

Bernard’s bread and butter is analysing and predicting demographic trends, including property.

His comments are based on the role of shifting demographics and he is sought after within property circles to talk about how this is going to affect your chances of securing your dream home.

His first of many best-selling books, The Big Shift, dealt with a predicted spike in demand for residential property motivated by the retirement of the baby boomers. As each generation of Australians outlive the next, demographers will play an increasingly important role in the housing industry.

Connect with Bernard: Twitter | Book - The Big Shift | Other Publications

scott haslem

Scott Haslem

Current Role: Chief Economist Australia, UBS Investment Bank.

Previous Roles: Senior Economist, Reserve Bank of Australia.

You can find his comments in: All reputable publications, there are too many to mention.

Scott was rated the number one market economist in the 2005-2009 Australian BRW Equities Market Report and was awarded the best Australian economic forecaster award by Bloomberg magazine in 2011. He is regarded as one of the leading forecasters in the country. And as a former staffer for the RBA, Haslem is often called on to provide expert insider comment and interpretation of data and figures, such as the uptake of fixed rate mortgages and what this means for borrower sentiment.

Connect with Scott: Scott isn't social - Get Connected!

Rory Robertson

Rory Robertson

Current Role: Economist, Westpac.
Previous Roles: Interest Rate Strategist, Macquarie Bank.

You can find his comments in: During his "bubble debate" period, his name was everywhere the word bubble could be found. Now he’s taking a more subdued approach.

Robertson got the nick-name "Rate-Cut-Rory" back in the 90s when he predicted a series of 50bp rate cuts.

Recently, he has been vocal on the topic of housing prices. He won a bet with academic Steve Keen over whether Australia’s housing bubble was going to burst. Robertson was willing to bet a 230km run on his word – at least you know he’s passionate about his work.

Connect with Rory: Rory's not Social - Get Connected!

Shane Oliver

Shane Oliver

Current Role: Chief Economist and Head of Investment Strategy at AMP Capital.

Previous Roles: Oliver began as a researcher for AMP Capital in 1984.

You can find his comments in: AMP Capital Investors, Money Management and Mortgage Business.

Whether it be a rate-cut or economic stability in Europe, Oliver is one of the main men the media turns to for analysis.

You can check out Oliver’s Insights regularly on the AMP Capital website. He has a skill for taking otherwise mind-boggling concepts and delivering them to you in easily digestible chunks of information.

Connect with Oliver: Twitter | Subscribe to his blog

Craig James

Craig James

Current Role: Commsec Chief Economist

Previous Roles: James became a chief economist of the Colonial Group 1997. He then became a journalist with the Financial Review, before moving onto a financial commentator-style role with Commsec.

You can find his comments in: Craig James performs around two to three TV crosses a day, ad-hoc radio and newspaper interviews, as well as writing regular commentary for Commsec.

Craig provides his audiences with insights that they would be hard-stretched to find anywhere else. From the ‘Ipod share market’ to the effect of weather patterns on the economy, his Commsec reports rarely ever fall short of the mark.

Craig James is the veritable Tony Abbott of the financial world – except with the data to back up his commentary. Whether it be in the gym or in the boardroom, he likes to flex his power and imagination to bring something different to the financial sphere.

Connect with Craig: Twitter | Subscribe to his Switzer Blog

The big chiefs

Big Chiefs

Bill Evans

Current Role: Chief Economist Westpac Group.

Previous Roles: Research Manager RBA, Treasurer Commonwealth Bank, Director Financial Markets Schroders Australia Limited.

You can find his comments in: Comments from the Big Chiefs can be found across all reputable publications.

Bill isn’t shy of a camera and you probably recognise his face from his commentary on the evening news. He is the most outspoken of the big four chief economists and when he speaks, a journalist or cameraman is often close by. His 20 years of experience with Westpac is why you should be close by too!

Connect with Bill: Watch his latest Economic Update

Alan Oster

Current Role: NAB's Group Chief Economist.

Previous Roles: Senior Advisor for the Federal Treasury, Treasury Representative to the International Monetary Fund.

Oster’s Money Basics series for NAB is a great tool for people looking to make sense of the financial world around them. Sovereign debt, Europe and housing are just a few of the big issues Oster deals with on a daily basis.

Michael Blythe

Current Role: Chief Economist for the Commonwealth Bank.

Previous Roles: RBA Economic Group. Senior Economist.

Blythe isn’t afraid to make a call about housing, the federal budget or anything he’s had some experience with over his career; which is pretty much everything.

Connect with Michael: Subscribe to his blog

Warren Hogan

Current Role: ANZ Chief Economist.

Previous Roles: Head of interest rate and product research Credit Suisse First Boston.

Now that the ANZ has decided to distance itself from the Reserve Bank’s cash rate announcements in favour of individual pricing on the second Friday of the month, Hogan is one to watch for the bank’s take on their analysis of the health of the economy.

The academic

Steve Keen

Steve Keen

Current Role: Professor of Economics & Finance at the University of Western Sydney

Previous Roles: A stint as a School Librarian, Education Officer for an NGO, Conference Organiser, Computer Programmer, Journalist, Computer Press, Economic Commentator, ABC Radio National & Radio Australia - he's done it all.

You can find his comments in: ABC Radio National & Radio Australia, Debt Deflation Blog, Debt Watch Report, Debunking Economics, Housing Affordability Blog, American Real World Economics Review Blog & Business Spectator.

Back in the eye of the GFC, Keen predicted that housing prices would fall by as much as 40%. Rory Robertson took him up on this with a wager and the next thing you know Keen was on his way up to Australia’s highest point. Although housing prices did not come crashing down, Keen’s support base has grown of late, which has most likely been bolstered by his American Real World Economics Review Award for his predictions about a global housing collapse.

Keen is a good one to keep an eye on for advanced predictions about housing prices and he has some interesting views about the nature of economy and debt.
Check his blog, Steve Keen’s Debtwatch, for information about the global debt bubble and how this relates to housing.

Connect with Steve: Twitter | Subscribe to his Blog | Book - Debunking Economics

The golden record

John Symond

John Symond

Current Role: Executive Chairman, Aussie.

Previous Roles: CEO, Mortgage Acceptance Corporation

You can find his comments in: The Aussie Blog, Property Observer AND all major print and broadcast news outlets.

Back in the 1990s the banking climate was ripe for a champion. Symond’s pulled himself back from financial death to launch Aussie Home Loans with the clarion call to all Australians, "we'll save you".

To use a couple of old clichés, adversity breeds success, the rest is history and glory lasts forever.

Symond is among the media’s go-to people for comment on rates and the market. When he has something to say, his successes speak for themselves – and generally louder than any opposition.

Check the Aussie Home Loans blog for commentary from the Aussie team and guest spots from industry experts like John McGrath. There is some practical information for first home-buyers through to the lighter side of property, like the family with the $250,000 Christmas light obsession. Also keep an eye on the Aussie Home Loans Twitter feed for updates on investment tips through to making music in the kitchen.

Connect with John: Twitter | Subscribe to his blog | Book - Aussie John

Mark Bouris

Mark Bouris

Current Role: Executive Chairman, Yellow Brick Road Financial Services, Chairman & executive Director, TZ Limited, Non-Executive Chairman Anteo Diagontics.

Previous Roles: Founder, Wizard Home Loans.

You can find his comments in: All major reputable publications.

It’s a resume that reads like a checklist for those looking to establish economic credentials... Did the hard yards at the start of his career: check. Founded and directed one of Australia’s largest non-bank lenders: check. Chairman of a federal government think-tank on economic commerce: check. Professor of finance: check; banking: check; and tax: check.

Industry legend, avant-garde financial entrepreneur and media savvy businessman Mark Bouris can be found providing quotes and analysis to all the leading print and online business and property publications. Bouris is also active on the social media front and if you have a question, send him a Tweet. One of his recent articles for Property Observer, "Borrowers must exercise their freedom of choice", was in response to one of his followers remarks.

Connect with Mark: Twitter | Book - The Yellow Brick Road to Your Financial Security

John McGrath

John McGrath

Current Role: Chief Executive of Mcgrath Estate Agents.

Previous Roles: He started McGrath Real Estate at the tender age of 24, he probably had a paper route before then.

You can find his comments in: Switzer (Expert) and all major print and broadcast publication.

John McGrath has proved that bombing out on your Year 12 exams is not the end of the world: he got 95 out of 500. At the time, it may not have been the best result, but it put him on the path to securing his place among realty royalty.

McGrath is not afraid to make a call about where he sees the market heading in future months. Check his blog for no-nonsense comment, practical advice and predictions. And he is not just a property man; his adventure into the mortgage broking landscape has proved nothing but a success; Oxygen Home Loans took out brokerage of the year at the 2011 Australian Mortgage Awards.

But on another note, we are all not John McGraths. Seriously kids, study hard...

Connect with John: Other Publications

Michael Yardney

Michael Yardney

Current Role: Director, Metropole Property Strategists.

Previous Roles: He has been with Metropole for over 30 years.

You can find his comments in: All major newspapers and magazines: 2GB, 3MTR, 2GO and ABC Drive, Yahoo Finance, Property Observer, Smart Company, A.P.I Magazine & New Zealand Property Investor Magazine.

Yardney can claim to have educated more successful property investors than anyone else in the country – and you could be next. People obviously think he is onto something, as he has over 20,000 followers on Twitter. Not quite David Koch’s following at 34,908 followers, but at least there are no dad jokes.

For Yardney, investing in property has been a great way to pass the spare moments, but when he is not building his portfolio and working at Metropole Finance, he spends his time as a one-on-one mentor to aspiring property moguls, tours the property circuit as a keynote speaker and spreads his knowledge across a range of leading publications.

One would expect his successes came from more than luck and Yardney has wisdom to impart. His knowledge of the market and the driving forces behind it are well worth the attention of those looking to buy their first home or expand their portfolio.

Connect with Michael: Twitter | | Visit his web site | Book - How to Grow a Million Dollar Property Portfolio

The front-line

Margaret Lomas

Margaret Lomas

Current Role: Founder & Director of Destiny Financial Solutions.

Previous Roles: Consultant, Australian Training Company.

You can find her comments in: Sky News Business: Your Money Your Call, Property Success with Margaret Lomas.

What’s the age old proverb, give a man a fish and he will eat for a day, teach him to invest in property and he will eat for the rest of his life? That’s what Margaret Lomas is trying to do with Destiny Financial Solutions, a company aimed at teaching people how to successfully and sustainably build their property portfolio.

Lomas is the author of six best-selling property investment books and is a regular at the annual Home Buyer & Property Investor Show. She is also the chair of the Property Investment Professionals of Australia.

Have a look at her Facebook page for additional property investment tips, advice and continued discussion between investors and the pros. Be sure to watch Margaret on the Sky Business Channel on Monday nights.

Connect with Margaret: Twitter | Facebook | Book - 20 Must Ask Questions for Every Property Investor

Catherine Cashmore

Catherine Cashmore

Current Role: Channel Ten's property expert as seen weekly on The Circle – and regular journalist, blogger and well know media commentator for all things property. She works as a senior property analyst for National Property Buyers – a company successfully purchasing hundreds of homes for both home buyers and investors.

Previous Roles: Senior Buyer and Media Advisor, JPP Buyer Advocates. Senior Advocate & Media Manager, Elite Buyer Advocates.

You can find her comments in: She writes regularly for property observer, API magazine, RealEstateView's expert section, along with many other outlets. She comments regularly in various local and national news publications such as Domain in The Age, the Herald Sun and The Australian.

Connect with Catherine: Twitter | Visit her web site


Heidi Armstrong

Current Role: Founder & Director of Operations, State Custodians Mortgage Company.

Previous Roles: Freelance researcher & Legal Editor, Butterworths; Lawyer, Armstrong Solicitors; Lawyer, Farmer Campbell Armstrong Solicitors; Medical Representative, Smith Kline Beecham International; Specialist, Pfizer; Legal Executive, Morgan Consulting; Human Resources Manager, Arnold Bloch Leibler Lawyers & Advisors; Director, Exxo Home Loans & Exxo Deposit Bonds.

You can find her comments in: Your Money; Your Investment Property Magazine, Money Magazine; Video Series: Home Buying Tips, Investing and Refinancing Tips, 90 Second Answers; Financial News.

Judging from the number of awards Heidi Armstrong and State Custodians Mortgage Company have racked up over the last couple of years - over 40 in total - their trophy cabinet must be bursting at the seams.

She has been a guest speaker at the Home Buyer & Property Investor Show and she even helped write the book on non-bank lenders– Money Magazine's Your Guide to Non-Bank Lenders.

Armstrong regularly shares home loan updates and investment information through her Twitter feed and will answer any question relating to the market in 150 words or less, or you can check the State Custodians blog for an extended response.

Connect with Heidi: Twitter | Subscribe to her blog

Lisa Montgomery

Lisa Montgomery

Current Role: CEO & Specialist Broker, RESI Home Loans.

Previous Roles: Head of Consumer Advocacy, Wizard Home Loans; CEO, Infochoice Limited.

You can find her comments in: Broker News, Sky Business: Your Money, Your Call & Home Loan Daily.

Montgomery was a speaker at last year’s Home Buyer & Property Investor Show, but if you missed it and you are keen to get an idea of the quality of her contributions, have a look at the interview she did with Home Loan Daily

She is an active "Tweeter" and offers some great advice and quality links through her feed. If you have a question that needs to be answered, drop her a line at and her answers will be posted on the Resi website.

Connect with Lisa: Twitter

Peter Boehm

Peter Boehm

Current Role: Non-Executive Director, International Finance Company, CEO, National Workplace Training.

Previous Roles: CEO, Home Sweet Home,Managing Director, Pathfinder Consulting Pty Ltd; Deputy managing director at The Money Store, Managing Director, Endeavour Personal Finance, London at Lloyds TSB

You can find his comments in: Resident Expert: Yahoo 7, Smart Property Investment.

His articles are informative and deal with practical issues that affect first homebuyers: from finding out how to check your property developer’s reputation through to tips and tricks for paying off your mortgage ahead of time. Boehm’s advice is a must for all those looking to make sure they have a tick in every box prior to rushing into buying their first home.

Also have a look at Boehm’s Twitter feed for investment property related updates and links to articles that have tickled his interest.

Connect with Peter: Twitter | Book - The Great Australian Dream

The storytellers

michael mcnamara

Michael McNamara

Current Role: General Manager, Herron Todd White.

Previous Roles: RP Data.

You can find his comments in: Sydney Morning Herald.

McNamara’s past three years commenting on the state of affairs within the market makes his opinion and analysis a perfect companion to his colleague blogger on SMH’s Domain, Carolyn Boyd.

Through his work as a valuation expert, Michael has extensive experience in determining the worth of a property; in fact, he helped write the book, Sydney Morning Herald Good Suburb Guide.

Connect with Michael: Subscribe to his blog | A search for McNamara’s Twitter resulted in a graphic designer – send a message to him and tell him to get social and share some of his expertise.

Scott Pape - Barefoot Investor

Scott Pape

Current Role: The Barefoot Investor.

Previous Roles: Stockbroker.

You can find his comments in:
Triple M Radio, Channel 10, CNBC, The 7pm Project, ABC, all News Ltd. Publications, Better Homes and Garden Magazine & radio show and pretty much everywhere else.

A mortgage is one of, if not the biggest financial commitment we will make, so it’s going to occupy a fair slice of the financial advisor’s world. Pape provides good advice on balancing personal budgets and managing a mortgage, buying your first property and beating the banks. Check his comments for minimising the financial burden of a mortgage.

Connect with Scott: Twitter | Subscribe to his blog | Visit his web site | Book - The Barefoot Investor – Five Steps to Financial Freedom

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