There are over 4 million satisfied customers using customer-owned banks around Australia, and it's high time more people realised the advantages. The Customer-Owned Banking Association (COBA) has launched the Better for All campaign in the lead-up to the House Economics Committee hearing in an attempt to level the playing field with the Big Four banks.
These four banks (Westpac, ANZ, CommBank and NAB) are seen as "too big to fail" and thus receive an unfair cut of government funding. This allows them more room to move in the banking market, and more room for error. COBA states that customer-owned banking customers have the highest satisfaction ratings in the whole country. It's a wonder so many more people haven't already made the switch away from the bigger banks.
Are customer-owned banks really successful?
They might not be the biggest banks in the country, but customer-owned banks collectively have $100 billion in total assets, making them the largest banking industry outside of the Big Four. That sounds like they're pretty successful to us.
There's no need to be worried about the safety of any deposits either, because they're protected by a government guarantee. When your money is with a customer-owned bank like CAPE, we look after it, so you don't have to worry. As a sector of the banking industry, customer-owned banking is growing strongly, but there needs to be more regulatory framework in place.
What does that framework look like?
Back in 2014, the Financial Systems Inquiry recommended major changes to the unfair funding of the bigger banks around Australia. This was meant to help the smaller banks (including customer-owned banks) to have a greater share of government funding, as well as be more secure in competition against the Big Four.
However, three years later, nothing has changed. These aren't cosmetic measures that are only meant to scratch the surface of the unfair banking industry in Australia – they're designed to enhance competition and make banking better for all.
In order for our customer base of 4 million to grow, we need the help of the government. These regulatory measures should have been put in place three years ago at the very least, but the big banks are still unfairly dominating the market.
The Better for All campaign aims to spread awareness of the success of customer-owned banks, and the slow movement by the government. For more information on the COBA and this current campaign, get in touch with the team at CAPE today.