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BFCSA
MORTGAGE
DISTRESS SOS

What BFCSA Does...

BFCSA investigates fraud involving lenders, spruikers and financial planners worldwide.  Full Doc, Low Doc, No Doc loans, Lines of Credit and Buffer loans appear to be normal profit making financial products, however, these loans are set to implode within seven years.  For the past two decades, Ms Brailey, President of BFCSA (Inc), has been a tireless campaigner, championing the cause of older and low income people around the Globe who have fallen victim to banking and finance scams.  She has found that people of all ages are being targeted by Bankers offering faulty lending products. BFCSA warn that anyone who has signed up for one of these financial products, is in grave danger of losing their home.

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Denise Brailey

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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Denise

Denise

Denise Brailey has dedicated the past 20 years of her life to being a Consumer Advocate - a voice for the people and former President of RECA (Real Estate Consumer Association. She has helped thousands of investors and is currently President of the BFCSA (Banking & Finance Consumers Support Association). Denise was also awarded and presented with the Rona Oakley Award for Consumer Protection in 2010.
How CBA's penny pinching undermined its life insurance business Australian Financial Review Sep 12 2018 6:38 PM James Frost   Commonwealth Bank's decision not to update the medical definition for heart attack in line with global standards saved the bank $2.5 million but put it on a collision course with the public, the Hayne commission has heard. It was another dark day for the insurance industry on Wednesday as the commission highlighted a litany of denials and delays of claims by life insurers. Westpac was singled out for taking an average of 184 days to make good on its trauma policies. The penny pinching antics of Commonwealth Bank were however the main event, and counsel assisting the commission Rowena Orr, QC, took CommInsure's managing director Helen Troup through events that included the bank lowballing a heart attack victim and misleading the Financial Ombudsman Service. The bank was embroiled in a dispute...
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Banking royal commission: Sixth round rings with $6bn bang and a long list of admissions The Australian 3:18pm September 10, 2018 Michael Roddan, Elizabeth Redman   The royal commission has painfully detailed an almost endless chit list of misdemeanours by the country’s scandal-ridden life insurance sector, including more than $6 billion of commissions for advisers in five years, out-of-date medical definitions, pushy sales culture, unsolicited and misleading sales calls and secret surveillance that further deteriorated claimants’ mental health. Amid the mountain of alleged misconduct, counsel assisting the royal commission Rowena Orr, QC, told the hearing more than $6 billion in lucrative commissions had been paid to financial advisers for the sale of life insurance over the last five years by just 10 companies. This included $1.16 billion for National Australia Bank’s MLC business, almost $500 million by Commonwealth Bank, nearly $600m by Suncorp, $750m by Westpac, $700m for Hong Kong-based AIA...
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Voluntary super idea derided, but think it through The Australian 12:00am September 11, 2018 Adam Creighton Economics Editor   Former prime minister Paul Keating came out swinging last week after I wrote a column suggesting the idea of voluntary superannuation had so much going for it: higher wages, more choice, lower taxes, reduced financial parasitism and weakened vested interests. Notable commentators Alan Kohler and Terry McCrann saw merit in the idea, which was also popular with our readers. Keating, though, one of the architects of superannuation, said it would be a “national tragedy” if a system that had “transformed the Australian economy and was envied by the rest of the world” were “dismantled”. It certainly has transformed the living standards and job security of the financial services sector, which is bigger in Australia as a share of the economy than any other developed country. Who could doubt that it is envied...
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ASIC’s banks penalties fall short: committee The Australian 12:00am September 11, 2018 Cliona O’Dowd   A parliamentary committee has blasted the corporate regulator for letting the big banks off “scot-free” and neglecting to crack down on systemic failings in the financial system. In its review of the Australian Securities & Investments Commission’s 2017 annual report, the House of Representatives standing committee on economics cited “shocking examples of misconduct” exposed by the banking royal commission and criticised the regulator for not being tough enough and relying too much on enforceable undertakings. “Evidence provided to the royal commission has exposed parts of the financial sector as having a corporate culture motivated by greed and lacking in moral leadership,” the committee concluded.  “However, evidence of systemic failings also places the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) in the spotlight because it is the regulator ­responsible for promoting investor and financial consumer trust and confidence,...
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RBA warns of vulnerability but says household debt crisis 'not imminent' Australian Financial Review Sep 10 2018 7:15 PM Patrick Commins   The explosion of mortgage debt has made Australian households, banks and the economy more vulnerable to a downturn, but with a robust economy and falling unemployment, the Reserve Bank remains confident that there are no immediate reasons for alarm. Reserve Bank of Australia assistant governor Michele Bullock, who heads the bank's financial stability department, in a speech on Monday provided a detailed picture of the rapid build-up in household debt since the early 1990s. The ratio of household debt to income has climbed to 190 per cent, from around 160 per cent five years ago, and from 70 per cent 30 years ago. Ms Bullock also noted that in a global context Australians have been particularly enthusiastic in their borrowing. In the early 1990s Australia had debt-to-income ratio lower...
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Sack them all, says ClearView insurance boss The Australian 12:00am September 11, 2018 Michael Roddan, Elizabeth Redman   ClearView chief risk officer Greg Martin called for his employees to be sacked after lashing the ASX-listed life insurer’s “full-on sales culture without much regard for customers” and admitting it had breached criminal anti-hawking laws more than 300,000 times. The royal commission heard that ClearView, which continues to be in the sights of the Australian Securities & Investments Commission over “systemic” failures in complying with laws designed to prevent spruikers forcing unwanted policies on customers, ran an outbound call centre where as much as 40 per cent of calls were non-compliant and targeted “poor” Australians with unnecessary policies. Senior counsel assisting the commission, Rowena Orr QC, kicked off the inquiry’s probe into the life insurance sector yesterday by detailing a stream of admissions of misconduct from the largest companies in the industry, pinning...
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Dodgy life insurance tactics in royal commission spotlight The Australian 12:00am September 10, 2018 Michael Roddan   EXCLUSIVE  Lucrative deals between some of the world’s largest life insurance underwriters and local companies that operate high-pressure outbound call centres are in the firing line of the royal commission and financial watchdogs. The royal commission will this week take aim at the fastest-growing slice of the life insurance industry, the “direct” channel, which draws in hundreds of millions in revenue each year. Despite the profitable revenue stream, which has brought about four million life insurance policies into force, large life insurers providing the underwriting for the policies hawked by outbound call centres have barely tracked how, or to whom, insurance was being sold. The Australian Securities & Investments Commission last month told life insurance companies to shut down outbound sales centres, the hallmark of the so-called “direct” insurance model, or face legal action....
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Mortgage stress is slowly on the rise Australian Financial Review Sep 9 2018 11:00 PM Su-Lin Tan   Mortgage stress has risen as a new record high level of household debt against income is set across Australia, new data by research and analysis group Digital Finance Analytics shows. The number of households at all levels of stress rose by 6000 in August to reach a total of 996,000 stressed households, according to DFA's analysis using 52,000 household surveys, public data from the Reserve Bank, APRA and ABS, as well as private data from lenders and mortgage aggregators. The majority of households – just under 80 per cent of all households – are mildly stressed although the biggest group of severely stressed mortgage holders are exclusive professionals and mature stable families, DFA says. Households are considered stressed when their cashflows cannot cover ongoing home ownership costs.Those who are mildly stressed have access...
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James Aitken's front row seat to the GFC circus Australian Financial Review Sep 9 2018 11:00 PM Jonathan Shapiro   One August evening in 2008, James Aitken got a call from a client – a portfolio manager at a large fixed income fund – giving him a very specific instruction. "Go to the cash machine and get some money out," he was told, twice. "RBS [Royal Bank of Scotland] is gone and I am not convinced money is going to be coming out of the ATMs tomorrow." So Aitken, based in London, went and did exactly that, drawing enough pounds sterling to last about three months. He never told his family. Few know exactly what happened behind the scenes at Royal Bank of Scotland, which had inflated its assets to become the world's biggest bank. It was later nationalised by the British government in an expensive £45 billion ($82 billion) bailout....
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Is a sledgehammer about to hit property investors? ABC News7 September 2018 3:10pm Stephen Letts   Investors have backed further out of the property market and there is no surprise there. That's been the trend since regulators started tightening the thumbscrews on the sector. In July investor lending fell another 1.3 per cent, to be down more than 15 per cent for the year. Owner-occupiers have been more resilient, with lending up 1.3 per cent over the month. But these figures are from July, well before the big banks started peddling their out-of-cycle mortgage rate hike. It's taken more than three years for the regulators to turn around the $1.5 trillion juggernaut that is the mortgage portfolio of Australia's big four banks. But the real target has been about a third of that, or $530 billion, that has been lent to investors. The impact has been obvious, a so-far fairly gentle...
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Investor home lending falls to lowest level in nine years in July Australian Financial Review Sep 7 2018 4:11 PM Michael Bleby   Investor home lending fell to its lowest level in nine years in July as banks tightened housing credit for investors, spurred by the banking royal commission and regulator APRA. While July was the month from which APRA ended its cap on investor loan growth,new mortgage commitments for investor borrowers fell 1.3 per cent from June to $10.2 billion, accounting for 32.6 per cent of all new loan commitments - the weakest level since August 2009 - official figures on Friday showed. "The underperformance in investor relative to owner-occupier lending is consistent with what we would expect in response to a tightening in lending standards, the consequence of both the Banking Royal Commission, and macroprudential policies," JP Morgan economist Henry St John said. NAB director of economics David de...
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Burning and churning: Why Suncorp shuttered its advice business Sydney Morning Herald 8 September 2018 12:05am Adele Ferguson & Ruth Williams   It was June 2013 and Australia's financial advice industry was reeling. New laws banning commissions on financial products were about to come into force, and the Commonwealth Bank financial planning scandal had catapulted the sector's dirty laundry onto the front pages. At bank and wealth company Suncorp, its Guardian Financial Planning business - which specialised in flogging life insurance advice to 130,000 clients Australia-wide via an army of 257 advisers - had found itself in the corporate regulator’s sights. Guardian, whose board was chaired by then-senior Suncorp executive Geoff Summerhayes, had made the fatal mistake of hiring dozens of advisers from scandal-ridden outfit AAA Financial Intelligence, just days after the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) had pulled that group’s financial services licence over what it described as AAA's...
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Super needs overhaul as retail funds lag industry rivals The Australian 12:00am September 8, 2018 Alan Kohler   The total amount of money in the Australian superannuation pot is now $2.7 trillion, equal to the market value of two American companies, Amazon and Apple, but let’s not quibble. It’s regarded by most as a gobsmacking amount of money, a great national asset, yet after 25 years of compulsory super, amassing the mighty sum of Amazon+Apple, the qualifying age for the Age Pension can’t be raised by three years to 70 without leaving millions high and dry. Hardly a triumph of national policy, you would think. According to the ATO, 14.8 million Australians had super accounts on June 30, 2017. It’s probably now about 15 million. That’s $180,000 a person, which wouldn’t trouble anyone’s pension means test. As a retirement sum, that would earn $9000 a year at a yield of 5...
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Super managers’ credibility goes up in smoke The Australian 12:00am September 8, 2018 Michael Roddan   The wealth management industry has been revealed to be taking advantage of superannuation retirement savings by automatically putting members into high-premium life insurance policies designed to cover smokers. The new evidence of further gouging in the nation’s $2.7 trillion superannuation sector comes ahead of the royal commission’s next fortnight of public hearings, which will focus on the scandal-ridden life insurance sector. It’s the latest reputational blow to the under-pressure life industry, which is having its revenue models torn apart by regulators, politicians and consumer groups after years of reaping billions of dollars in revenue from unsuspecting superannuation savers. The industry has also been on tenterhooks over the potential for Kenneth Hayne’s royal commission to further up-end the sector. ClearView chief risk officer Gregory Martin will take the stand at the hearing on Monday, and is...
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James Shipton outlines ASIC’s new game plan The Australian 12:00am September 8, 2018 Ben Butler   New probes of corporate governance at the big end of town, cryptocurrencies and the risks of climate change are among priorities set out by new Australian Securities & Investments Commission chairman James Shipton in his first corporate plan. Also on Mr Shipton’s hit list are insolvency practitioners, grand­fathered commissions, superannuation and investment products, as well as consumer finance issues including buy-now-pay-later schemes. The new projects add to ones under way covering everything from insurance sales practices. “Corporate Australia needs to build trust among the broader community,” he said in an introduction to ASIC’s new corporate plan, released yesterday. “The financial sector is facing unprecedented scrutiny.” He said the banking royal commission, which resumes hearings on Monday, “highlighted the harms that unlawful and unethical conduct can inflict on consumers and investors”. He said: “As a starting...
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Bankwest buy fast-tracked to avoid collapse The Australian 12:00am September 8, 2018 Andrew White, Adam Creighton   EXCLUSIVE  Australian financial regulators fast-tracked the 2008 takeover of Bankwest by Commonwealth Bank in just “a couple of hours” to head off the almost certain collapse of the regional lender at the height of the global financial crisis. Former Reserve Bank governor Glenn Stevens and Australian Competition & Consumer Commission chairman Graeme Samuel told The Weekend Australian that if the deal in October 2008 had not been approved Bankwest would have ceased to be a competitive force. Mr Samuel said he was given “a couple of hours” to approve a deal that would normally take months of consultation before a verdict was given because of the crisis engulfing financial markets. “The RBA said that there was no choice — it was crisis stage,” Mr Samuel said. “It was a deal that was regulator-required and...
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Revealed: How the RBA kept the banks afloat with a $4 billion daily lifeline Australian Financial Review Sep 7 2018 11:00 PM Karen Maley   It's an eerie parallel. In early 2008, the forbearance of the newly installed government in Canberra was being sorely tested – as it is now – when the country's big four banks hiked their home interest rates in tandem, even though the Reserve Bank of Australia had not raised its official interest rates. The then treasurer Wayne Swan urged customers to vote with their feet, just as Prime Minister Scott Morrison is advising borrowers to shop around. But a decade ago the frictions were forgotten as the GFC hit. Now, for the first time, RBA leaders give a detailed account of how they worked side by side with the banks during those dark times, and how the banking guarantee turned into a "nice little earner" for...
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Goldman Sachs and the plunder of 1MDB Australian Financial Review Sep 6 2018 11:10 PM Aaron Patrick   EXCLUSIVE  Goldman Sachs was paid a quarter of a billion dollars to raise money for Malaysia's notorious 1MDB fund in a deal that would normally generate some $1.3 million in fees and carried little risk because much of the bond was already sold, according to an explosive new book. Billion Dollar Whale, The Man Who Fooled Wall Street, Hollywood, and the World says that some of 1MDB's board seemed sceptical at the $US190 million ($250 million) Goldman Sachs wanted – which the authors call an "outrageous sum" – and even the investment bank's president of Asia, David Ryan, thought the amount was excessive. A portion of the book leaked to The Australian Financial Review asserts Goldman Sachs, which is now the target of the US Justice Department investigation over the 2012 deal, structured...
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Banks push to close credit union, payday lender 'loophole' Sydney Morning Herald 7 September 2018 12:05am Clancy Yeates   Banks are calling for a "loophole" in consumer protections to be closed, saying all lenders should be required to meet new minimum behaviour standards when dealing with customers. Such a change would require all credit businesses, including credit unions, building societies, and payday lenders to meet the same criteria as banks have committed to under the industry's revamped code of conduct. Consumer advocates and small business ombudsman Kate Carnell backed the broad principle of customers having the same rights when dealing with different types of lenders, but did not go as far as endorsing sector-wide adoption of the Australian Banking Association (ABA) code of code of practice. The call for change was made in a recent submission from the ABA to the royal commission, in response to its round of hearings relating...
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Banks resume interest rate rises as ACCC looks away The Australian 12:00am September 7, 2018 Michael Roddan   EXCLUSIVE  The renewed “synchronised swimming” of the major banks lifting interest rates in tandem, out of cycle with the Reserve Bank, has come after the competition watchdog’s investigation into mortgage pricing has ended. Politicians and consumer groups have lashed the major banks’ latest round of mortgage rate increases, sparked by Westpac’s 14-basis-point rise last week and followed in quick succession yesterday by Commonwealth Bank and ANZ with rate moves of 15 and 16 basis points respectively. However, the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission’s scrutiny of the interest rate decisions of the major banks only extends to the period to the end of June, putting the latest round of price rises beyond the scope of the watchdog’s review. The ACCC review, which was established after the then Turnbull government slapped a $6.2 billion tax...
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ANZ pushes through bigger rate rise to offset weakness Australian Financial Review Sep 6 2018 11:12 PM James Frost, Patrick Commins   ANZ boss Shayne Elliott has acknowledged that funding costs alone have not triggered an out-of-cycle rate rise with softer business conditions also playing a role. ANZ was first out of the blocks with a 16 basis point rise at midday on Thursday, followed minutes later by Commonwealth Bank with a 15bps rise of its own. Both were slightly higher than Westpac's 14bps rise from the week prior. Mr Elliott defended his bank's marginally larger rate rise, saying pricing decisions were complex and required balancing the interests of many stakeholders including customers and shareholders. "The market has slowed down as you know, housing is a bit slower and there are a few less mortgages out there," Mr Elliott said. UBS analyst Jon Mott said the 16bps repricing of ANZ's mortgages...
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ASIC accuses NAB of $100m super rip-off The Australian 12:00am September 7, 2018 Ben Butler, Michael Roddan   The corporate watchdog has launched legal action accusing National Australia Bank of breaking the law 77 times and undermining confidence in the superannuation system over a fee-for-no-service scandal that ­allegedly siphoned more than $100 million from half a million unwitting customers. In a Federal Court suit filed yesterday, the Australian Securities & Investments Commission alleges NAB’s superannuation trustees NULIS Nominees and MLC Nominees ripped off one group of 220,000 savers by trousering $33.8m in advice fees to super fund members who did not have an adviser. On top of this, a further $67m was taken from another 300,000 super savers who did have an adviser linked to them in NAB’s systems but where the services they received were no more than those enjoyed by a customer without an adviser. NAB also failed to...
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Tenants unable to pay the rent should get two jobs or move to Adelaide or Perth, Real Estate Institute says ABC News (7.30) 7 September 2018 Michael Vincent   The nation's top real estate agent has some advice for anyone trying to get on top of property prices. "Do the hard yards. Maybe even, God forbid, get two jobs," Real Estate Institute of Australia (REI) president, Malcolm Gunning, told 7.30. "Now, your viewers will hate that, OK, but many, many people do it — a lot of our migrants work two jobs." More Australians than ever before are stumping up rent money. That is especially the case for middle to high-income earners who have been locked out of the housing market in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne. It is a squeeze at the top and bottom of the market. Tenants associations and community housing groups say the burden to pay higher rents...
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ANZ and CBA hike variable home loans rates ·         MICHAEL RODDAN ·         SEPTEMBER 6, 2018 ·         ANZ Banking Group and Commonwealth Bank have outdone Westpac with larger rate hikes foisted on home loan borrowers, suggesting National Australia Bank is not far off with rate hikes of its own.      ANZ (ANZ) today said borrowers with variable home loans would face a 16 basis point rate hike from September 27. CBA (CBA), just moments after ANZ’s announcement, said it would be stinging borrowers with a 15 basis point hike by October 4.     The local dollar slid from US72.02 cents to US71.80c after the announcements, indicating that out-of-cycle rate hikes were not yet fully priced in. Bank shares are also responding positively, the four majors recovering towards the unchanged mark against a backdrop of steep broader market falls. Westpac late last month ushered in the first round of rate...
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Industry funds will eat banks' lunch, says Mark Carnegie Australian Financial Review Sep 5 2018 11:00 PM Ben Potter   Industry super funds could capture a quarter of business and mortgage lending in Australia as the banks reel from the royal commission's revelations of serious misconduct and a regulatory backlash that's already begun, investor Mark Carnegie said. Mr Carnegie said the royal commission would be a "tide changer" ushering in up to two decades in which the industry super funds would claw back the banks' gains in superannuation and take a huge share of the banks' bread-and-butter lending business for themselves. He said these changes would bring a style of capitalism to Australia that had more in common with Germany's participatory capitalism – in which workers take part in the ownership and supervision of the companies that employ them – than traditional Anglo-Saxon capitalism. Speaking after presenting at the Australian Industry...
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