We all know that the big banks aren't shy of charging a pretty penny or two when it comes to late payments, credit card fees or ATM withdrawals. What you probably didn't know, however, is the sheer amount of money Aussies pay in bank fees every single day.
That's right. Every 24 hours, Australians swell the banks' coffers with an amount of that could buy a Dassault Falcon 7X private jet each morning. The yearly total amounts to $12.5 billion, according to research conducted by the Reserve Bank of Australia. That's a whopping $425 million more than was paid out in 2014, and this giant leap is largely thought to be down to an increase in credit card fees, overdrafts and late penalties. For example, personal loan and home loan fees have each risen by 2.7 per cent in the past year, netting the banks $1.62 billion in fees.
Big bucks for the big banks
With these sorts of numbers swirling around, it's little wonder that the Big Four took home astronomical profits for the 2014/15 fiscal year. The Commonwealth Bank of Australia netted $9.45 billion in profits, and even the worst-performing of the quartet – NAB – still raked in $6.3 billion. How much of these heft profits do you think the bank's customers see? Not many, we'd wager.
"It's staggering to think that last year the average household paid $468 in bank fees."
"'It's staggering to think that last year the average household paid $468 in bank fees with credit card fees rising the fastest, up from 5.9 per cent in 2014 to 6.6 per cent in 2015," said Tom Godfrey, a spokesman for consumer advocacy group Choice to The Daily Telegraph.
"Credit cards are already too toxic for too many Australians with one in five living on them to get through to payday and sky-high interest rates are out of step with the rest of the lending market." Mr Godfrey concluded.
Australians owe around $52.2 billion in credit card debt, according to Finder. That mind-boggling number is perhaps a little easier to comprehend when the same source states that some credit card lenders whack on up to $700 a year in fees alone.
CAPE is a customer-owned bank. This means that any new customers that join our ranks become a member – one of us! We'll treat you as we would like to be treated – as a customer, not a number. Any profits that CAPE makes is filtered back down to you through lower loan rates and suchlike, so when you bank with us, you can do so without fear of getting stung.