Money ANZ Bank engaged in 'misconduct' after Landmark deal: Rowena Orr
Banking royal commission: Bob Katter interrogates commissioner Hayne on farming finance
Federal MP Bob Katter interrupts the banking royal commission, forcing commissioner Kenneth Hayne to defend the inquiry's approach of hearing evidence from case studies. require(["inlineoutstreamAd", "c.
It is open for the royal commission to find ANZ Bank engaged in "misconduct" in its treatment of a range of farmers that became customers after it bought the rural lender Landmark, senior counsel Rowena Orr says.
Following two weeks of public hearings focused on farming and remote areas, Ms Orr on Friday delivered "open findings" that could be made by Commissioner Kenneth Hayne, alleging multiple cases of "misconduct" at ANZ Bank.
Commonwealth Bank's Bankwest may have also engaged in “misconduct” by breaching the code in several ways in its treatment of Queensland cattle farmer Mel Ruddy, which included relying on an old valuation to trigger a default, Ms Orr said.
ANZ says domestic economic uncertainty will put more downside pressure on the Australian dollar
ANZ says the Aussie dollar won’t find support from the domestic economy, which leaves it at the mercy of the global risk environment.Specchia said the domestic economic picture is unfavourable for the Aussie, amid increasing global uncertainty from trade war threats and tightening liquidity.
RaboBank is another lender that may have engaged in "misconduct" in its treatment of Queensland farmer Wendy Brauer and her husband, Ms Orr said. Ms Brauer last week told the commission the couple was left $1 million worse off after a loan to buy a farm from a bank manager, who was also working for other parties on the deal.
In her closing address, Ms Orr pointed to a range of examples that could be seen as "misconduct" by ANZ towards former Landmark clients, including instances where the bank was too quick to take enforcement action, or refused reasonable settlement offers from clients.
Ms Orr suggested some of the behaviour by ANZ was a breach of the industry code of conduct, while other instances fell short of community expectations. She did suggest breaches of the law relating to ANZ and Landmark.
Funeral funds target Aboriginal people
The banking royal commission has moved to Darwin to examine issues affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Some indigenous Australians have been paying for four or five funeral insurance policies for their families, consumer groups say.Even children have been signed up for plans.Consumer advocates say some insurers have exploited the importance of funeral ceremonies in Aboriginal culture to sell unsuitable funeral insurance plans.The Department of Human Services has stopped funeral insurance providers from using its Centrepay bill paying service for people receiving Centrelink payments.
A root cause of the misconduct was that ANZ underestimated the number of struggling loans it was acquiring when it bought Landmark in 2010, according to Ms Orr.
There's now little doubt that Australia's jobs market is slowing
Australian job advertisements fell heavily in June, according to the ANZ Job Ads Index. Job ads in its series have now fallen in four of the past six months, seeing the annual increase slow to a near two-year low of 6.9%. The result fits with the moderation in Australian employment growth in 2018.Australian job advertisements fell heavily in June, pointing to the likelihood of slower hiring in the months ahead.According to ANZ Bank's Job Ads Index, total advertisements slumped by 1.7% to 175,660 in seasonally adjusted terms, completely reversing a 1.4% increase reported in May.
“ANZ did not calculate the number of incoming customers who were going to experience financial difficulty,” Ms Orr said in Darwin.
There was also a lack of training with ANZ's "lending services" branch that dealt with struggling customers, and many former Landmark staff left the bank, leading to a loss of corporate memory.
'Lack of empathy'
It was also open for Commissioner Hayne to find that misconduct by ANZ was caused by the culture in lending services, which Ms Orr said showed a “lack of empathy” and failed to consider the emotional impact of its enforcement actions.
ANZ's head of lending services, Benjamin Steinberg, admitted on several occasions that the bank's conduct had fallen below expectations when he appeared before the commission in Brisbane last week.
Earlier on Friday, ANZ was quizzed about the practice of providing "informal" overdraft facilities to customers who may well be denied a formal overdraft if they applied for one.
Counsel assisting Mark Costello tabled a bank statement from an Indigenous customer on Groote Eylandt in the Northern Territory, who was on Centrelink benefits and was charged nine overdrawn fees in the space of two weeks, costing him $54. Informal overdrafts also attract interest rates of about 17 per cent, the commision heard.
Commissioner Hayne opened the hearings on Friday by saying he was asking CBA for more information about why it was late handing in documents last week relating to its rural lending.
“Having considered what was said in the letter of 3 July, I have asked the solicitor assisting the commission to seek further explanation from the solicitors for CBA regarding some questions which arise from the terms of their letter,” Commissioner Hayne said
“A letter to that effect was sent soon after yesterday’s hearings finished. In the circumstances I am not yet in the position to decide what course I should follow in relation to these matters.”
'Give us a try': Bendigo and Adelaide Bank CEO pitches for trust .
Rebuilding the community’s trust following the Hayne royal commission’s revelations will take time, says the CEO of Bendigo and Adelaide Bank Marnie Baker.Asked whether she was confident the bank had dealt with the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority’s concerns about the quality of loans in Rural Bank, she said the bank would formally respond to the Royal Commission by the end of this week, or early next week.
'Destructive' rural receivers won't be questioned in royal commission
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