Australian home-loan approvals rose in April for a seventh month as the lowest borrowing costs in half a century and government cash handouts bolstered demand among first-time buyers.

The number of loans granted to build or buy homes and apartments climbed 0.9% to 60,395 from March, when they advanced a revised 4.8%, the statistics bureau said in Sydney today. The median estimate of 19 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News was for a 1.5% gain.

Today’s figures add to signs the economy is overcoming the worst global slump since the Great Depression.