Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Australia's banking system is rotten

Judge for yourself!  International rating agency Moody's has looked to downgrade Australia's big four banks, factoring in availability of government support for troubled banks (here), while the Herald group has been exposing Australia's own subprime industry - Low Doc loans, which are as toxic as their US equivalents - and of course the regulator it seems may have been asleep at the wheel and then very keen to deflect blame!  Seen it all before?

She says the emails which are being released - sent from 30 banks and other lenders into the 20,000-strong mortgage broker 'channel' - prove the banks are calling the shots. The emails examined by BusinessDay suggest some banks orchestrated the reckless fall in lending standards as the credit boom approached its crescendo in 2007 (here).
Of the borrowers who have asked for help from Ms Brailey's action group, Banking & Finance Consumers Support Association, 1170 of them claim their loan application forms (LAFs) have been tampered with. In most cases, the income figure has been increased to justify more credit. "There is not one clean 'LAF' among them," said Ms Brailey, 70, a consumer advocate from Western Australia. "This is Australia's subprime crisis.'' (here)
The Commonwealth Bank concealed financial improprieties by a top financial planner controlling an estimated $300 million in investments for 1300 clients, many of them retired and with serious health problems....The planner, Don Nguyen, who joined the nation's biggest bank in 1999 and has since been banned from providing financial services advice until 2018, allegedly forged signatures, created unauthorised investment accounts and overcharged fees.
A Fairfax Media investigation has revealed that bank staff took part in a cover-up that allegedly included the falsification of documents after Mr Nguyen left his position in July 2009.... one whistleblower, Jeff Morris, agreed to be identified by Fairfax Media to warn others about the perils of whistleblowing and the lack of support he got from the regulator, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.  (here)

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