Australian banks to face more scrutiny

In the wake of the royal commission and following a string of scandals, the Australian corporate watch dog will embed supervisors in the big-four banks in a move to crack down on corporate misbehaviour.

The Australian Securities & Investments Commission will place its staff inside the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Westpac, National Australia Bank, ANZ and embattled wealth management firm AMP.

ASIC powers have been expanded after a lengthy review by the newly appointed ASIC chairman, James Shipton.

The changes will see ASIC’s budget boosted by more than $70 million following claims at the financial services royal commission that it had been “asleep at the wheel” in the fight against corporate misconduct.

The Federal Government has also appointed a second deputy chair, Daniel Crennan QC, to specifically focus on enforcement.

Financial Services Minister Kelly O’Dwyer said the funding would ensure ASIC was in a strong position to deal with big financial services companies and protect consumers.

“These new resources will ensure that ASIC is the tough cop on the beat — the tough cop that all Australians need, and expect, ASIC to be,” Ms O’Dwyer said.

The reputations of the big four banks and AMP have been badly damaged from the inquiry into misconduct in the financial sector, which has heard allegations ranging from lying to the regulator, falsifying documents and extracting fees from customers long since dead.



Business First is a peer-to-peer magazine: written by CEOs and other high level executives, with interviews with some of the country’s best leaders.

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