CBA exec joins Insurance Council of Australia

Commonwealth Bank executive Andrew Hall has joined the Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) as its new chief executive. Hall was previously Commonwealth Bank’s executive general manager for corporate affairs for over seven years and before that was director of corporate…

No quick turnaround on bank dividends

Investors hoping that the big banks will restore their dividends sooner rather than later are likely to be disappointed, as the earnings pressure on the banking sector will continue into the 2020/21 financial year. The banks’ March-half earnings (December-half in…

Westpac creates new division, appoints CEO

Westpac has announced a new specialist businesses division and has appointed Jason Yetton as chief executive of the division. The specialist business division has been created to simplify the Australian and New Zealand banking businesses. This will include wealth platforms,…

What Westpac’s impairment charge means for its share price

Significantly higher impairment charges will be a feature of the upcoming interim reporting season for three of the big banks and will continue to rise next financial year. Westpac has announced a large profit hit prior to releasing its official…

Court delivers mixed outcome for licensee over planner misconduct

Westpac has been held liable for the failure of one of its representatives to comply with their best interests obligations, in a court ruling handed down late last year. The bank was unsuccessful in arguing that the misconduct represented just…

Westpac promises brokers an improved mortgage process

Westpac’s changes to home loan underwriting has disrupted its growth and led to ongoing problems with mortgage lending. The implementation of a new expenditure verification tool has significantly affected lending volumes due to being “clunky”. As a result, the bank’s…

Why Westpac’s sales calls were ‘personal advice’

In its case against ASIC over a telephone campaign promoting superannuation consolidation, Westpac argued it was sales and marketing, not advice. The Federal Court disagreed. “The dichotomy which Westpac seeks to establish in this case between advertising and marketing on…

Low rates driving high returns in other markets

The low interest rate environment is producing positive outcomes for investors with a strong outlook for equity markets, commercial property and a pick-up in residential property. Speaking at Charter Hall’s Property Forum, Westpac’s chief economist Bill Evans forecast that interest…

Superannuation class actions mount up

Slater and Gordon has filed a class action against Westpac subsidiaries on behalf of superannuation members. The claim was filed against BT Funds Management and Westpac Life Insurance Services last Friday. It is the third superannuation class action Slater and…

Court ruling on responsible lending not the end of the matter

The Federal Court yesterday rejected ASIC’s allegation that Westpac’s automated loan application assessment system was in breach of its responsible lending obligations, ruling that a lender “may do what it wants in the assessment process”. That is not the last…