A review of things you need to know before you go home on Friday; Westpac cuts a key mortgage rate, BNZ raises some TD rates, Truckometer softer, another huge Akl project, share markets tank, swaps slip, NZD stable

Here are the key things you need to know before you leave work today:

Updated with stunning sharemarket falls in Shanghai and Hong Kong, below.

MORTGAGE RATE CHANGES
Westpac has matched BNZ at 4.39% fixed for one year.

TERM DEPOSIT RATE CHANGES
BNZ reduced its 5 and 8 month term deposit rates, and reduced all rated 2 years and longer.

4 YRS, 7 MTHS JAIL FOR MORTGAGE FRAUD
A property developer was today jailed for mortgage fraud for dishonestly obtaining about $52m of loans. He was sentenced to for 4 years, 7 months. The case has prompted banks to tighten lending processes.

MAIN CAR INSURERES COMPARED
An interest.co.nz special: Insuring your car with one insurer over another could cost you twice as much. But would this see you get more bang for your buck? Jenée Tibshraeny investigates.

REGIONAL TRENDS VARY
QV says average property values rocketed up in Wellington over the last 12 months, headed sideways in Auckland and took a dip in Christchurch. That left the average QV house price index up +6.4% in the year to January.

SOFTER SIGNAL
ANZ’s forward looking Truckometer survey was out for January today. The Heavy Traffic Index bounced up recovering most of its December fall, while the Light Traffic Index eased. The indexes are positive about Q4 growth, but the Light Traffic Index is giving a slightly softer signal for growth from mid-2018. The Heavy Traffic Index is up +8.0% in a year while the Light Traffic index is up +3.6% in the same period.

MORE FEES
Augusta Capital has paid NPT $4.5 mln to manage their portfolio for $0.9 mln per year. Augusta owns a tad less than 19% of NPT.

LESS FEES
Both ANZ and Kiwibank have decreased fees for members of their default KiwiSaver funds. That will be a $1 mln reduction. The other seven default providers have not, yet anyway.

ANOTHER LARGE PROJECT
Scentre Group, the Aussie owner of Westfield shopping centres, has kicked off its $790 mln redevelopment of its Auckland Newmarket complex. It will include a second store for struggling Aussie department store operator David Jones. Our tally of major Auckland projects now totals $39 bln, some of which have been recently completed.

MORE SHARP FALLS ACCELERATE
Updated: After a Wall Street beating (S&P500 was down -3.75%), both the NZX (-1%) and ASX (-1%) are down, Hong Kong is down -3.3%, Shanghai is down -4.1% and Tokyo is down -2.6% in active trade. Singapore is down -1.5% today so far. (As at 6pm NZT.) Remember, anything more than +/-0.5% in a day is significant.

BENCHMARK INTEREST RATES SLIP
Wholesale swap rates eased back -1 bp across the whole range of durations today. Meanwhile the UST 10 yr, is now at 2.85% which is about where it opened in NZ this morning. The Aussie 10 yr is at 2.85% (down -1 bp). The Chinese 10 yr is at 3.91% (up +1 bp), and the Kiwi 10 yr bond is 2.99% (unchanged). The 90 day bank bill rate is unchanged.

BITCOIN SLIPS
Bitcoin is now at US$7,935, down -2.1% on the day.

NZ DOLLAR UNCHANGED
The Kiwi dollar has changed little today. It is currently at 72.1 USc, at 92.8 AUc and 58.9 euro cents. This puts the TWI-5 down at 73.6.

Daily exchange rates

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End of day UTC
Source: CoinDesk

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