BFCSA Blog

Led by award-winning consumer advocate Denise Brailey, BFCSA (Inc) are a group of people who are concerned about the appalling growth of Loan Fraud around the world. BFCSA (Inc) is a not for profit organisation in the spirit of global community concern and justice.

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Rates on hold for a lot longer, RBA believes The Australian 12:00am October 18, 2017 David Uren   The Reserve Bank believes it can keep its benchmark cash rate at its record low of 1.5 per cent for a lot longer and says it is under no pressure to follow global peers like the central banks in the United States and Canada in raising rates. The minutes of the bank’s last board meeting, released yesterday, show it remains optimistic about Australia’s economic outlook but expects only a very gradual return of inflation to the middle of its target 2 to 3 per cent band. The Reserve Bank has used the minutes to quash speculation that it was preparing to lift rates for the first time since 2010 as part of a global move to return interest rates to more normal levels. The minutes noted that the US Federal Reserve was still...
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Housing affordability worsens: Moody’s The Australian 12:47pm October 18, 2017 Michael Roddan   Australia’s housing affordability crisis is worsening, with record-high debt levels exposing borrowers to greater risk of defaults and making them more vulnerable to economic and property market shocks, according to global ratings agency Moody’s. In a new report, Moody’s found housing affordability continued to decline across the whole of Australia, on an average basis, although it was most severely felt in Brisbane and Melbourne. Sydney, where housing prices have recently started to cool, saw an improvement in the proportion of household income being spent on mortgage repayments. “However, with affordability deteriorating on average on an Australia-wide basis, we believe housing market imbalances and the large build-up of household debt continue to pose risks to the performance of Australian residential mortgage-backed securities,” Moody’s vice president and senior analyst Alena Chen said. Australia’s decade-long debt binge has left the nation...
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Lenders blacklist more than 100 suburbs in new apartment crackdown Australian Financial Review Oct 18 2017 10:14 AM Duncan Hughes   Big banks are set to announce tougher measures to crack down on high rise apartment purchases including blacklisting more than 100 Brisbane suburbs, doubling the minimum apartment to qualify for funding, evidence of rental cash flows and tough new valuation criteria. Lenders such as Adelaide Bank are introducing "minimum funding requirements" requiring apartments to have their own bathrooms, kitchens, laundries and windows in key rooms, such as bedrooms and lounge rooms. Others, such as Suncorp Bank, the nation's fifth largest mortgage lender, are circulating a confidential list of 39 Brisbane postcodes covering more than 100 city and metropolitan suburbs where the new lending restrictions will apply from next Monday. "Our settings have been adjusted for postcodes based on recent weakness in the investment unit market in Brisbane, with evidence of...
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Coalition splits over BEAR law: 'It's against everything we stand for' Australian Financial Review Oct 17 2017 7:00 PM Phillip Coorey   The federal government faces internal unrest over plans to regulate the salary and appointment of banking executives, with at least one MP threatening to cross the floor to oppose the legislation and others voicing their discontent during a meeting of Coalition MPs on Tuesday. The Banking Executive Accountability Regime (BEAR) is to be voted on in the House of Representatives next week, but on Tuesday Victorian MP Russell Broadbent criticised the legislation as a contravention of Liberal Party philosophy, and reserved his right to cross the floor. His concerns were echoed by fellow Victorians Sarah Henderson and Tim Wilson. Mr Broadbent argued a Liberal government had no business being so interventionist to the point it was replicating the role of boards and creating more red tape. "It's opposite to...
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ACCC prepares to take on the big banks Australian Financial Review Oct 18 2017 2:00 PM Jonathan Shapiro   The chairman of the competition watchdog says it will ramp up its work on the banking sector in July next year, as it responds to demands from the government to scrutinise the market power of the big four banks. The chair of the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission, Rod Sims told an audience at the Citi annual investment conference that from July next year it will be free to "explore competition topics of our choice" "The fun bit starts in July next year," he said explaining that until the end of the current financial year the ACCC will have a mandate to examine how the banks are passing through the recently imposed bank levy that formed part of Federal Treasurer Scott Morrison's May budget. "We have a few interesting ideas – we...
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James Shipton appointed ASIC chairman Australian Financial ReviewOct 17 2017 5:49 PM Patrick Durkin   The new head of the corporate regulator, a lawyer at Harvard who worked at the Hong Kong securities regulator and Goldman Sachs, has been given a mandate by the government to shake-up the regulator and make significant cultural change at the Australian Securities and Investments Commission. James Shipton, the son of former Victorian Liberal MP Roger Shipton, was appointed yesterday to replace Greg Medcraft and has vowed to continue the "important work" of stamping out bad culture in the financial sector. "One of the reasons I left to become a regulator is that I genuinely believed that financial institutions, big and small, had lost their way and were losing the trust of the broader community and this public service mindset which had been instilled in me, made me think I have to do something about it,"...
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RBA and the PM blames Australians for taking on too much household debt.......no blame to predatory banks who handout $25k credit cards to all mortgage victims.  Yep, blame everyone but the banks.............that’s why we have a BIG Household DEBT problem. APRA and ASIC crowing they have fixed the banking system by lowering number of toxic loans sold!!!  There ought to be NONE you turkeys!!   ASIC admits serviceability details were not being rigorously tested, and that activity is still rampant amongst the Banking Cartel.   Refinancing Bankers caught in the crossfire of APRA’s tightening plan   Meredith Boot Oct 17, 2017 https://www.domain.com.au/money-markets/refinancers-caught-in-the-crossfire-of-apras-tightening-plan-20171017-gz2js5/ Some Australian home owners looking to refinance their mortgage to reduce debt have discovered they are “stuck” with their current loan due to stricter rules enforced by the banking regulator. One lender says tighter controls are penalising people with a good credit history on loans granted before the Australian Prudential...
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Westpac ‘rips off clients’ with life insurance The Australian 12:00am October 13, 2017 Anthony Klan   Westpac has ripped off its own banking customers by selling them overpriced life insurance products identical to cheaper policies it sells to the public through independent financial advisers, a class action legal case alleges. Shine Lawyers has lodged the action against the nation’s ­second-biggest bank, alleging it abused its position of power and breached its fiduciary duties by using its in-house financial planners to sell its customers policies it had loaded with “excess premiums”. The case has the potential to embroil Westpac in a financial services controversy after ANZ and National Australia Bank in 2015 said they had compensated clients after wrongdoing relating to financial advice. The Commonwealth Bank has announced the sale of its ­insurance business after the bank was rocked by scandals at its ­financial services arm. Chief executive Ian Narev announced plans...
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CBA joins bank teller incentives overhaul The Australian 12:00am October 14, 2017 Michael Roddan   Commonwealth Bank surprised the other major lenders when it was the first to dump ATM fees, but the bank has trailed its rivals in scrapping financial incentive payments for branch tellers. CBA yesterday announced the move to pay its branch staff based on customer service outcomes, while blocking bonuses for tellers, in line with recommendations made in Stephen Sedgwick’s review of remuneration in the banking system. Westpac was the first big bank to remove product-related incentives for its 2000 tellers across the branch network, announcing the move in January. CBA’s move will affect about 2000 bank tellers, and comes as the lender fights a public relations battle to restore its image after a string of scandals, including the latest allegations it breached anti-money laundering laws more than 53,000 times. It also comes ahead of CBA chief...
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IMF warning to Australia over rapidly growing debt The Australian 12:00am October 16, 2017 David Uren   Debts have risen faster over the past decade in Australia than in most other G20 nations, leading the IMF to warn that the ­nation is testing the financial market’s tolerance for risk. The International Monetary Fund is particularly worried about Australian household debts, which are 23 per cent larger than annual gross domestic product, a level by far the highest among G20 nations, with Canada the only other nation with household debts larger than the economy. “Household leverage and high house prices in Australia and Canada make these economies more susceptible to risk premium shocks,” the fund’s analysis of financial stability says. “There is a particularly strong need for financial-sector policy vigilance to guard against further build-up of imbalances.” The combined debts of government, business and households in Australia are now 147 per cent...
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Crossbench senators consider throwing a spanner in lobbying revolving door Sydney Morning Herald October 16 2017 Mario Christodoulou, Patrick Begley   Crossbench senators are discussing the biggest clampdown on federal lobbying in a decade, including five-year bans on former government ministers working as lobbyists and the creation of a new "integrity commissioner". The proposal, drawn up by independent Tasmanian senator Jacqui Lambie, is aimed at increasing transparency and includes new restrictions aimed at disrupting the revolving door between Parliament and the lobbying industry. Under the proposal, there would be new legislative penalties for those who breach the lobbying code of conduct and an independent umpire with investigative powers to provide oversight of the industry. Unions, industry groups and in-house lobbyists for the first time will come under a mandatory industry code, policed by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission. "This plan is a fix – it radically transforms the way the...
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'Miners are dying': The human cost of WA's FIFO economy WA Today October 16 2017 - 2:52pm Hannah Barry   "Our forefathers went away for war, our generation go away for work, but sadly now the only enemy killing us is in our minds." This is how Robert* describes the reality of the fly-in, fly-out lifestyle. Having worked in the industry for over 10 years on West Australian sites, he said the stress from his job, his workmates and his family had him lose his hair "in clumps" at one stage. Two years ago, the WA government conducted a 10-month investigation into the factors that lead to suicide among fly-in, fly-out workers. "The impact of FIFO work practices on mental health" report made 42 key findings and 30 recommendations regarding depression, workplace bullying, alcohol, harassment and suicide. In cruel happenstance, the report was tabled in parliament on the same day a...
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Bendigo and Adelaide Bank kicks off $300m hybrid offer Australian Financial Review Oct 16 2017 7:29 PM Jonathan Shapiro, Joyce Moullakis   Regional lender Bendigo and Adelaide Bank has kicked off a $300 million hybrid debt raising to replace maturing securities and bolster its regulatory capital. The bank's Converting Preference Share 4 offer, flagged by the The Australian Financial Review's Street Talk column, is set to pay investors a margin of between 3.75 and 3.95 percentage points over the bank bill rate of 1.7 per cent. That will result in an initial yield between 5.45 and 5.65 per cent. The 3.75 per cent to 3.95 per cent margin range compares to a 3.50 per cent trading spread on the existing BENPF securities that are due to be called in June 2021. The notes have a call date set in June 2024 and will refinance an existing issue of $269 million of...
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What is the Real Estate Treasurer doing in New York? Macro Business 9:49 am October 16, 2017   Interesting stuff as the Real Estate Treasurer continues his bubble-defence world tour: When Treasurer Scott Morrison met Goldman Sachs chief executive Lloyd Blankfein in New York late last week, the Wall Street banker was baffled. Blankfein was searching for answers. Why, at a time when most economies were generally performing reasonably, had politics become so difficult in many countries? “He does find that perplexing because their view is [economic] things are a lot better than the politics reflect,” Morrison told The Australian Financial Review in Washington on Friday. “I made this point: so long as we’ve got wages growth in the space it’s in then it’s understandable that we’ll continue to have those political frustrations.” …”I’ve better talking about better days ahead in the budget and beyond, and I think there’s a very...
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Australia's house prices surged 6,556 per cent since the 1960s, BIS says ABC News 16 October 2017 David Chau   Australian housing prices have surged by a massive 6,556 per cent since the early 1960s — an average increase of 8.1 per cent every year. Compared to other advanced economies in the past five decades, Australia had the sixth highest rise in annual property prices. It was beaten by Spain (+9.9pc), UK (+9.3pc), New Zealand (+8.8pc), Italy (+8.8pc) and Ireland (8.7pc). The United States, in comparison, had a 1,332 per cent lift in housing prices in the last five decades, and an average gain of 6 per cent per year. Those findings were from the Switzerland-based Bank of International Settlements (BIS), which researched the impact of short-term interest rates on house prices across 47 countries (advanced and emerging economies). BIS also considered whether housing is a "good long-term investment". Short-term interest...
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Cost cutting and understaffing of aged care homes leads to rationing and neglect Sydney Morning Herald October 15 2017 - 1:02pm Anna Patty   EXCLUSIVE  If the incontinence pads are half wet, they stay on. This is the instruction that aged care worker Esther Priol says she and her colleagues have been directed to follow – even when elderly nursing home residents ask to be changed. "We have been told we have been spending too much money on pads," Ms Priol said. "Unless they are 75 per cent wet, then the rule is we don't change them. "You divide the pad into fours and if three-fourths of the pad is wet, you change it." Ms Priol, who works at an aged care facility in Sydney's west, is one of thousands of aged care workers nationally who complain about increased rationing of everything from incontinence pads to meals. They say they struggle...
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WHY everyone needs to VOTE for Royal Commission and MUST write to the Opposition.   We have all wasted time writing to Turnbull and his Ministers.  As a banker he will not change his mind.  If he did change would you trust him to hand pick Royal Commissioners?  NOW is the TIME to write to the Leader of the Opposition who said YES TO an RC on 4th April 2016, and continues with that promise and guaranteed policy today.  A Royal Commission into Banks and Regulators, wide Terms of Reference, will shine a spotlight on even more criminal conduct. It will also expose more scandals and cover ups.  CEOs have been busy trying to kill off any thorough and proper investigations. Our BFCSA Members’ collective pressure has led to the formation of Consumer Advocacy Services being set up inside each Major Bank.  The Banks now realise they have an escalating image...
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South Australia pays the price of the LNP obsession with #FakeInvestment Posted on 16/10/2017 by The Glass Pyramid https://theglass-pyramid.com/2017/10/16/south-australia-pays-the-price-of-the-lnp-obsession-with-fakeinvestment/ South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill correctly rejects a population Ponzi scheme as an economic plan for South Australia’s future. The biggest challenge facing South Australia and other regional parts of Australia is the current Australian economic model which favours unproductive speculation and #FakeInvestment in the form of private bank credit creation “household debt” directed towards asset price speculation. Howard and Costello gave this debt driven economic model their full support by introducing a model of “independent” banking regulation, the RBA and APRA, that was described as ‘independent’ but in truth was willingly and rapidly captured by the interests of the banking and finance sector.  The relationship between the private banks and RBA and APRA is so inherently intimate that anything less than a Vulcan mind meld would have been a surprise.   To...
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The LIARS ARE THE BANKS WHO INSTRUCT BROKERS AGENTS TO TWEAK THE APPLICATIONS AFTER THE LOAN APPS HAVE BEEN SIGNED and without the knowledge or authority of the borrower.  ASIC is using SPIN to mislead the public.  Just remember, this fellow is charged with $180 million fraud.  Banks have run a $1.3 TRILLION masterminded Ponzi Financing Scam run by a 16 Banksters. Banks are responsible for teaching the agents these tricks and for the SELLING and APPROVALS of every toxic the loan.  So why are the Banks let off the hook for the vital NON-VERIFICATION of every loan (average: half million dollar mortgage to low income families).  Why are the banksters permitted to continuing feeding FAKE Stats to APRA?  80% of loans are INTEREST ONLY?  These are doomed to fail loans.   So the Government simply gives the agent a rap on the knuckles and then the banksters continue selling more toxic loans...
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ANZ and Westpac "Parliamentary Grilling" is a National Joke.    Well Messrs ELLIOTT and HODGES, you never told the borrowers the hidden fact of 'GREATER RISK', prior to signing did you?  You never sold these evil mortgage products of yours by saying: "This is a RISKIER ANZ product that you are going to love love love...............and you will lose your home in 5 years as we have planned for you and, we will later charge you greater interest as punishment for being so gullible and trusting of our bank."       You Sir and your sidekick Hodges, KNEW that if your sellers were instructed to say those words: no-one would buy!  You did not say: " we look after our customers and would never offer you such evil riskier products."  You and Hodges were the greedy ones preying on vulnerable older persons including the disabled and even the innocent younger borrowers.  Westpac's chief...
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