Community Legal Centres Queensland was one of 18 consumer representative organisations that endorsed a Joint Submission to the Australian Bankers’ Association Inc Independent Review of the Code of Banking Practice 2016. The 2016 Independent Review of the Code of Banking Practice comes three years after the introduction of the 2013 Code of Banking Practice.
Trust and confidence in the financial services sector, particularly the banking sector remains low. While the Australian Bankers’ Association (ABA) reports that “all banks have customer satisfaction ratings above 80 per cent” the most recent survey demonstrates the lowest customer satisfaction in three years and declining rapidly in recent years. Roy Morgan has identified a number of consumer concerns, including poor service, fees and charges, ethics and honesty, interest rate levels, poor advice, aggressive sales, a lack of staff and errors. Community legal centres' clients tell us they share these experiences, which can be frustrating and escalate into more significant problems.
With other consumer representatives, we suggest a number of areas where banks can work harder to improve their relationship with consumers, particularly with those in financial hardship and other vulnerable Australians. This submission raises these issues and proposes a number of ways to address them.