RBA tips fewer ATMs and an end to cheques

Original article by Joyce Moullakis
The Australian – Page: 17 : 4-Jun-20

The Reserve Bank of Australia could introduce a ‘least-cost routing’ regime for credit card transactions unless merchants take the initiative themselves, according to assistant governor Michele Bullock. This is among the options that will be considered in the RBA’s review of the payments system. Bullock also notes that the coronavirus pandemic has seen a sharp downturn in ATM usage, which may prompt the nation’s ATM network to be scaled back. She adds that cheques could soon be phased out, given that this payment option has been in steady decline for the last two decades.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA

Non-banks clamp down on new loans

Original article by Joyce Moullakis
The Australian – Page: 13 & 14 : 6-Apr-20

Non-bank lender Pepper Australia has increased its home loan interest rates and tightened its credit criteria as it assesses the impact of the coronavirus on its operations. Pepper will stop offering construction loans and will require a bigger deposit for commercial loans, while larger deposits will also be needed for its two types of home loans. Fellow non-bank lender Bluestone has also introduced new credit criteria as well as increasing the rates on all of its loan products by 35 basis points.

CORPORATES
PEPPER AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, BLUESTONE GROUP PTY LTD

Roy Morgan Customer Satisfaction Awards 2019: the best brands in banking and finance

Original article by Roy Morgan
Market Research Update – Page: Online : 25-Feb-20

The 2019 Roy Morgan Customer Satisfaction Awards have been presented in Melbourne. This year’s awards added six new banking and finance categories, taking the total list of winning banks, insurers and superannuation funds to fourteen. Commonwealth Bank (Major Bank) continued its dominance by securing its seventh straight customer satisfaction award. Bank Australia (Bank) and Newcastle Permanent Credit Union (Building Society/Credit Union) both recorded their first win of the annual award. RACT (General Insurer) and RAC (Major General Insurer) won their respective categories with seven and 12 monthly wins respectively. Insuranceline (Risk and Life Insurer) took out its third annual award, and MLC (Major Risk and Life Insurer) was a first-time winner. Tasmanian-based St.LukesHealth (Private Health Insurer), Defence Health (Major Private Health Insurer – Not for Profit or Restricted) and ahm (Major Private Health Insurer – Retail) were the other insurance category successes. Macquarie (Retail Superannuation Fund) fought off stiff competition to win another annual award, whereas Colonial First State (Major Retail Superannuation Fund) won comfortably with 11 monthly awards. HESTA (Major Industry Superannuation Fund) was welcomed to the winner’s podium for the first time.

CORPORATES
ROY MORGAN LIMITED

Home loans lift on property recovery

Original article by Cliona O’Dowd
The Australian – Page: 20 : 17-Feb-20

A report from Deloitte notes that there was a seven per cent decline in new mortgage settlements in 2019. However, the latest edition of its Australian Mortgage Report shows that lenders and brokers expect a 2-3 per cent increase in mortgage settlements in 2020. Heather Baister of Deloitte says mid-tier lenders such as Macquarie and Citibank could benefit the most from the expected upturn in settlements.

CORPORATES
DELOITTE TOUCHE TOHMATSU LIMITED, MACQUARIE GROUP LIMITED – ASX MQG, CITIBANK PTY LTD

From bad to worse for AMP: $2.5bn loss, $6.3bn outflows, more to come

Original article by Joyce Moullakis
The Australian – Page: 19 & 23 : 14-Feb-20

Wealth manager AMP has posted a statutory loss of $2.5bn for the 2019 calendar year, while its underlying profit fell by 32 per cent to $464m. A $2.35bn impairment charge in the first half was the major contributor to the big loss. Meanwhile, AMP’s wealth division recorded net cash outflows of $6.3bn for the year, and CEO Francesco De Ferrari says outflows are likely to be high again in 2020. AMP has advised that its customer remediation program is expected to be completed in 2021.

CORPORATES
AMP LIMITED – ASX AMP

AMP wins Chinese approval for life sale

Original article by Joyce Moullakis
The Australian – Page: 17 & 20 : 10-Feb-20

The China Banking & Insurance Regulatory Commission is understood to have given its approval for AMP’s $2.5 billion divestment of AMP Life to Resolution Life. However, the transaction still has a number of hurdles to overcome, including approval from the Reserve Bank of New Zealand and Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board. Hamish Carlisle from Merlon Capital Partner says that if Chinese regulators have approved the transaction then this should be disclosed to the Australian sharemarket

CORPORATES
CHINA BANKING AND INSURANCE REGULATORY COMMISSION, AMP LIMITED – ASX AMP, AMP LIFE LIMITED, RESOLUTION LIFE GROUP LIMITED, RESERVE BANK OF NEW ZEALAND, AUSTRALIA. FOREIGN INVESTMENT REVIEW BOARD, MERLON CAPITAL PARTNERS PTY LTD

Hayne casualties in limbo a year after the inquiry

Original article by James Frost, Aleks Vickovich, James Eyers, Sally Patten
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 10 : 31-Jan-20

Terry McMaster claims the Hayne royal commission, which handed down its final report in February 2019, was a waste of time and money. McMaster, the former head of Dover Financial, is the only person to be convicted as a direct consequence of the commission thus far. A number of high-profile executives left the financial services sector after appearing before the commission, or being implicated in evidence presented to it; only a small number of those individuals have returned to corporate life. One witness has stated they felt they were abandoned by their company after appearing before the commission, while some hold the view that women wore the burden of the commission disproportionately to men.

CORPORATES
DOVER FINANCIAL ADVISERS PTY LTD, AMP LIMITED – ASX AMP, NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB, IOOF HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX IFL, COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC

Gen Z threatens $1.7b of bank card revenue

Original article by James Eyers
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 21 : 17-Jan-20

Macquarie Group expects a further decline in credit card lending and revenue over the medium-term, as consumers continue to embrace alternative payment methods. Credit cards and payments account for some $1.7bn of major Australian banks’ revenue, and Macquarie believes that up to 45 per cent of this could be at risk due to the growth of ‘buy now, pay later platforms’ and other payment solutions. German notes that banks are also facing growing competition from fintechs in the foreign exchange market.

CORPORATES
MACQUARIE GROUP LIMITED – ASX MQG

RBA warns on buy now, pay later dangers

Original article by Gerard Cockburn
The Australian – Page: 14 : 16-Jan-20

Documents released under Freedom of Information laws shows that the Reserve Bank of Australia had expressed concern about the growth of ‘buy now, pay later’ platforms in March 2019. The internal memorandum cautioned that the rapid growth in such platforms is beginning to present a risk to financial stability, and noted that some consumers may not fully understand the risks associated with these platforms. However, the central bank also concluded that buy now, pay later services can be more beneficial to some consumers than credit cards.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, AFTERPAY LIMITED – ASX APT, ZIP CO LIMITED – ASX Z1P, GOLDMAN SACHS AUSTRALIA PTY LTD

Open banking rules too tough, say start-ups

Original article by James Eyers
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 13 & 16 : 15-Jan-20

The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission is responsible for the accreditation of financial services providers under the federal government’s ‘open banking’ regime. However, Fintech Australia has criticised the complexity of the process, and notes that it is expected to cost financial technology companies between $50,000 and $100,000 to gain accreditation. Fintech Australia contends that this cost will be prohibitive for many business start-ups. The open banking regime will commence in July, after initially being slated to begin in February.

CORPORATES
FINTECH AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION