RETAIL BANKING | Staff Reporter, New Zealand

New Zealand regulator sees no need for Australia-style banking inquiry

Even though the country’s four biggest banks are units of Australian lenders.

Reuters reports that New Zealand regulators believe that the country’s banking sector does not display any signs of systemic problems to warrant an inquiry like the one that has roiled lenders in neighboring Australia.

Although the heads of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) and the Financial Markets Authority (FMA) discovered areas of concern following the review, they found nothing like the widespread corporate malpractice uncovered in Australia.

"On the work to date ... I would say we've seen plenty of things that can and should be done better, but we have not seen evidence of what you might call systemic and widespread misconduct," FMA chief executive Rob Everett told a parliamentary committee.

New Zealand’s four biggest lenders are units of Australian banks. Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) operates the country’s largest bank through a subsidiary whilst Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Westpac Banking Corp and National Australia Bank also own subsidiaries in New Zealand.

A probe by the Australian Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry brought to light systemic corporate malpractice which unraveled at the country’s largest banks which range from rate-rigging, money laundering and unethical conduct.

Also read: Australian bank inquiry could cut 8% of the country's finance jobs

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