New research from Canberra based think tank The Australia Institute supports the need for additional regulation of Australia’s banking sector. In some of the most comprehensive polling ever released into attitudes to the banks in Australia, polling of over 1400 Australians finds:
- 68 percent of respondents supported a Royal Commission or similar inquiry. Only 16 percent were opposed. Support was similar across states and incomes.
- 76 percent agreed that big four banks should put customers ahead of shareholders; 64 percent disagreed that the banks do this.
- 77 percent agreed that banks “should have to pass any reductions in the RBA cash rate on to customers”. Only 11 percent disagreed. Major party voters were most likely to agree.
- 59 percent disagreed that the banks have been truthful about what they knew about scandals revealed by whistleblowers.
- Should banks be able to own financial planning businesses? More disagreed (44 percent) than agreed (32 percent).
- 52 percent agreed Malcolm Turnbull is protecting the banks by refusing to call a Royal Commission. Only 21 percent disagreed.
- What is the strongest action the government could take against the banks? 42 percent said a Royal Commission. 27 percent nominated a bank tribunal, and only 9 percent said making bank CEOs front an annual government-controlled committee.
- 52 percent said the Liberal Party was the party closest to the banks.