Government Announces Banking Royal Commission Following Request From Big Four

The federal government has announced a royal commission into the banks and the financial sector, reversing its previous opposition to such a move.

The announcement came at a press conference at 9.00am this morning, following a Cabinet meeting. The decision was preceded by a request from the major banks for a royal commission. In a letter to the government, the chairmen and chief executives of CBA, NAB, ANZ and Westpac said:

“In light of the latest wave of speculation about a parliamentary commission of inquiry into the banking and finance sector, we believe it is now imperative for the Australian Government to act decisively to deliver certainty to Australian’s financial services sector, our customers and the community.”

Recent days have seen increasing calls for a royal commission, especially from elements in the National Party. The House of Representatives resumes sitting next week. With two members down and facing by-elections, the government risked embarrassment in the chamber.

  • Listen to Turnbull and Morrison (33m)
  • Watch Turnbull’s press conference (33m)

The Letter from the Banks

17-11-30_banks-royal-commission-letter


Banks Will Have To Appear Before House Economics Committee Say Turnbull And Morrison

Australian Banks will have to appear once a year before the Economics Committee of the Parliament, under plans announced today by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

Turnbull and Treasurer Scott Morrison held a joint press conference to outline the plan. Turnbull said the banks “operate under a social licence from the Australian people”. Built on a foundation of trust, “they have to earn that trust through being open and accountable at all times,” Turnbull said.

The heads of the four major banks will be required to appear before the House of Representative Standing Committee on Economics. Morrison said this was “in the same way that the Reserve Bank and APRA currently appear before the committee on a regular basis”. [Read more…]


Financial Crisis: Kevin Rudd Address To The Nation

Kevin Rudd has delivered his first Address to the Nation since becoming Prime Minister ten months ago. The brief speech was broadcast nationally this evening.

The speech came just hours after the Prime Minister announced a $10.4 billion ‘Economic Security Package’. [Read more…]


“It’s Really Bad, But Economy In Strong Shape,” Says Rudd

Kevin Rudd, has said the international financial situation is “really bad, let’s not mince words about it”.

But the Prime Minister emphasised the soundness of the Australian banking system, referring to a report from the World Economic Forum. He said: “Australia is ranked fourth out of 134 and to put that into context the UK ranks at number 44, the United States number 40 and Germany at number 39.”

Rudd said that the financial crisis would have a direct impact on superannuation funds. [Read more…]