The Diminishing Popularity Of Banks

The last decade or so has seen a rise in the Australian economy but it has also seen in a downfall in banking. Banking, as we know has become a necessity and loans are increasingly becoming a popular means of sufficing an immediate requirement. Banks in Australia have always been traditionally focused and some of the top banks focusing on fulfilling basic consumer requirements of include:

Adelaide Bank

This bank is a listed publicly and has its head office in South Australia. It provides different types of financial services through a detailed distribution network and by forming new national alliances.

AMP Banking Australia

AMP is one of the leading wealth management companies in Australia with an excess of AUD$84 billion in assets.

ANZ (Australia and New Zealand) Bank

ANZ Bank is considered as one of the biggest banking companies in Australia as well as New Zealand and was also ranked among the top 50 banks in the world. The world headquarters for ANZ is situated in Melbourne where it started off in the 1830s.

Bank of Queensland (BOQ)

Bank of Queensland is the second largest Queensland-based banking and financial institution and is listed among the top 5 biggest banks in Australia.


It was formerly called the Bank of South Australia and today it is one of the largest financial institutions in South Australia and is also the main provider of personal finance, housing and rural banking in the State. Today BankSA is owned by St George Bank.

Commonwealth Bank of Australia

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia is one of leading banking and financial institutions, which has positioned itself for future growth and is aiming to make banking accessible to all Australians.

Macquarie Bank Limited

The Macquarie Bank offers different types of investment banking opportunities and also caters to selected retail financial service markets as well as commercial banking in Australia.

National Australia Bank

The National Australia Bank is an internationally acclaimed financial services group that has been providing comprehensive range of financial services in Australia as well as 15 other countries.

RBA – Reserve Bank of Australia

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) is the central bank and its primary responsibility is the monetary policy. Some of the key roles of the RBA include maintaining the stability of the financial system and enhancing the efficiency and safety of the Australian payments system.

These are some of the most popular banking institutions in Australia. Off late, it has been noticed by various research groups that Banks are falling way behind in their promises to upkeep customer satisfaction and to consistently thrive to offer competitive interest rates on their loans. As a result, more and more people are turning towards newer and non-traditional forms of accessing capital such as non-bank lenders and now social lending or peer to peer lending networks.

This phenomenon can be disastrous for banks as has been experienced by banks in the UK following the launch of Zopa. Zopa is considered a pioneer in peer to peer lending and anyone can take an online loan from the Zopa borrowing platform. The salient point is that the borrower can set his or her repayment amount with a maximum interest rate. The interest rate is definitely lower than what banks are offering and hence more people are finding it advantageous from their point of view.

Social lending has landed on the Australian shores with Lending Hub now being seen in the same light as Zopa and Prosper. Of course the funding vehicle is still under development but one can safely predict that the social lending networks will start to take lending market share from the banks. Another aspect that has pushed social lending ahead is the fact that it is more community oriented, which banks are not (although the banks like to portray themselves as being people and community focused they have spent the last 4-5 years closing branches and making banking highly automated and less consumer focused).

According to a recent study in Britain, it has been found that 74% of people feel a positive attitude towards borrowing from a social lending community as opposed to borrowing from their own high street banks. Almost 49% people feel that the banks have not been able to keep their promise of offering customer satisfaction. Another 81% believe that the banks are self-interested while a good 76% believe that they are greedy.

All in all these features make banking institutions highly unpopular especially now in the light of the unprecedented growth of social lending communities and peer to peer lending solutions.

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