Banking & Finance


HSBC whistleblower sentenced to five years in jail

The former HSBC employee who leaked information on large-scale tax evasion at the bank has been sentenced to five years in prison for aggravated industrial espionage.

CBA compensation executive moves to new role

CBA has appointed a new executive to run its compensation scheme for customers who received bad financial advice.

Clancy Yeates   The Commonwealth Bank has appointed a new head of its compensation scheme for customers who received dodgy financial advice, a program it expects to continue running for another year.

Fintechs too keen on banks' 'bits and pieces': ANZ

ANZ Bank's technology chief says there is an opportunity for start-ups to target big events, like buying a house, rather than specific products.

Clancy Yeates   ANZ's technology chief says start-ups trying to challenge banks are too often focused on pinching small pieces of business.

IOOF feels heat from shareholders

IOOF chief executive Chris Kelaher confirmed the company is the subject of an investigation by ASIC.

Sarah Danckert   IOOF has been lambasted at its annual meeting by its shareholders for not doing proper due diligence on businesses it acquired that the company says now are the root of its troubles.

Up to 12,000 vocational students in limbo

Vocational training students face an uncertain future after the collapse of a major provider.

Sarah Danckert and Benjamin Preiss   Collapse of major private vocational education provider could see colleges close over next 48 hours.

OzForex board backs Western Union bid

Richard Kimber says Western Union looks like a highly credible bidder.

Shaun Drummond   OzForex's board has agreed to support Western Union's $880 million offer for the company.

Telstra HQ has questions for Telstra Super

Telstra has issued a "please explain" to its corporate super fund over its handling of a senior investment manager.

David Ramli   Telstra head office has confirmed it is seeking answers from those responsible for running its corporate superannuation fund.

Equity from family home could fund aged care

Association of Superannuation Funds chief executive Pauline Vamos wants the industry to help members be better prepared to deal with health and aged care costs.

Sally Rose   ASFA argues that one of the areas where super funds need to innovate is in the development of financial products that draw on housing equity "through mechanisms such as equity release products, downsizing, or contingent loans".

BoQ chief hoses down excited analysts

Bank of Queensland managing director Jon Sutton says the bank is doing better than its rivals, but its outlook is not quite as rosy as some believe.

Shaun Drummond   Bank of Queensland chief Jon Sutton politely hosed down some overly rosey analyst expectations of improved earnings on the back of hikes to interest rates.

Banks win relief from securitisation crackdown

About $30 billion was raised in 2014 by turning mortgages into residential mortgage-backed securities to sell as bonds to investors.

Shaun Drummond   Banks have won a reprieve from changes to securitisation rules that threatened to remove a major funding source and force smaller lenders to merge.

Lessons for fintech disrupters from two industry veterans

SocietyOne's Mitchel Harad says start-ups need to get more hungry and think bigger.

James Eyers   The chief marketing officer of leading P2P lender SocietyOne and the chief executive of payments disrupter Tyro say start-ups need to think more strategically about the talent they hire and should stop trying to reinvent the wheel.

PayPal shoppers will be able to pay via Eftpos

PayPal has become a member of eftpos and plans to connect to its real-time payments infrastructure next year.

Clancy Yeates   Shoppers using PayPal are set to be able to make real-time payments via Eftpos as the local pioneer of electronic payments pushes into online transactions.

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ECB could charge banks for hoarding cash

Even buying rebundled loans at risk of non-payment has been discussed, although such a radical step is highly unlikely for now.

Euro zone central bankers could stagger charges on banks hoarding cash or to buy more debt to bolster efforts to boost the area's economy.

Adele Ferguson

CBA's $80 million compo claim should come with penalties

Adele Ferguson - dinkus - thumbnail - dink

Adele Ferguson   A week after saying it wanted to be known as the 'ethical bank', CBA has had to refund $80 million in compensation.

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MasterCard open to all payments newcomers

Ling Hai says MasterCard wants to serve all the stakeholders, whether they are somebody like Apple or Android, or an individual consumer.

Shaun Drummond   MasterCard co-head of Asia Pacific Ling Hai says the company wants to accommodate all the new players in payments, including Apple and Google, apparently confirming a split with Visa, which looks to be siding with the banks in their fight with Apple.

Bank concerns keeping S&P analysts awake at night

The banks will be forced to slash their dividends if Australia slips into recession, UBS says.

James Eyers and Jonathan Shapiro   A cooling of the property market has averted a cut to the banks' credit ratings but still poses a risk should national house prices keep rising, Standard & Poor's says.

Cyber security spending to grow: Stevens

Glenn Stevens says spending on cyber security will rise.

James Eyers   The RBA governor says "the already-considerable resources devoted to IT security will grow" as awareness increases of cyber risk and its consequences".

Super industry in the dark on 'fit and proper' guidance

ASFA chief executive Pauline Vamos said it was up to individual funds and their boards to interpret who is fit and proper to manage super funds.

Sally Rose   The prudential regulator has refused to confirm or deny whether being an undisclosed and undischarged bankrupt should exclude an individual from being considered "fit and proper" to hold a senior investment role at a superannuation fund.

More competition to drive fees up, not down

AustralianSuper chief executive Ian Silk says the government's policy is designed to increase the cost structure of the industry and would result in higher fees.

Sally Rose   The government's plan to reduce superannuation fund fees by increasing competition in the $425 billion per year default fund market is set to backfire by driving up marketing costs and making fees more expensive.

CBA to pay out $80m in refunds

Commonwealth Bank is the country's most profitable.

Clancy Yeates   CBA, the country's most profitable bank, will refund $80 million to customers for not honouring discounts, the third bank this year paying back money for its mistakes.

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Maintaining high returns a risk to banks: S&P

The government confirmed APRA would take further steps to make sure bank capital was "unquestionably strong".

James Eyers   Standard & Poor's says banks are sound but warned risks could build in the system as banks strive to maintain high shareholder returns.

Every second banker may lose job over next 10 years

There's tough times ahead for bankers if the former Barclays CEO predictions prove correct.

Steve Slater   Banks across the world may cut up to half their jobs and branches in the next 10 years as they fight to stay relevant and profitable in the face of sweeping technological change, says the former head of British bank Barclays.

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Telstra Super defends embattled portfolio manager

The superannuation fund has defended its failure to take any action or to disclose Greg Lee's former bankrupt status.

Sally Rose and Sarah Thompson   Telstra Super stuck by the head of its $1.5 billion property portfolio Greg Lee after an internal investigation in mid-2014 revealed he was then an undischarged bankrupt.

Why our laziness is costing us $9.9b

More than one million households haven’t switched lenders, potentially wasting $9.9 billion.

Esther Han   The can't-be-bothered attitude could potentially cost Australian mortgage holders $9.9 billion, new research shows.

Super gathering to digest regulator's latest warning on fees

ASIC commissioner Greg Tanzer wants superannuation managers to be more transparent about hidden fees.

Sally Rose   Superannuation and other managed funds will be forced to be more transparent and detailed in disclosing the costs they pass on to account holders via both direct fees and indirect charges. 

Chi-X kicks off warrants offer with CBA and BHP

John Fildes, CEO of Chi-X Australia, says they are aiming their new products at SMSFs.

Shaun Drummond   Chi-X Australia chief John Fildes says self-managed super funds are its chief target for a range of new investment products it rolls out from Wednesday.

Bank curbs weigh on property investor lending

Loans to property investors made up 34.9 per cent of new lending approved in the quarter, which was the lowest share in two years.

Clancy Yeates   Australian Prudential Regulation Authority data on Tuesday showed the value of loan approvals for property investors fell to $32.39 billion in the three months to September 30

Bankers are still paid too much

Within the investment bank, the firm will reduce the number of clients by about half.

Nicholas Comfort   Deutsche Bank co-chief executive officer John Cryan argues that bankers still earn too much money and shouldn't be paid like entrepreneurs.

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FlexiGroup hires CEO from NZ life insurer

Andrew Abercrombie, chairman of FlexiGroup, wanted the next CEO to have a sales bent,

Shaun Drummond   FlexiGroup has appointed Symon Brewis-Weston, the boss of New Zealand's biggest life insurance company, Sovereign Assurance Company, as its chief executive.

NSW appoints six directors to $30b insurer

icare CEO Vivek Bhatia says his organisation is like an ASX20 company in that once the Finance Minister appoints the board, the board governs it.

Ruth Liew   National Australia Bank director Peeyush Gupta, former Herbert Smith Freehills chief Gavin Bell and HCF Group director Lisa McIntyre have been appointed to the board of the NSW government's $30 billion general insurance arm, Insurance & Care NSW (icare).