Public outcry kept interest rates down, inquiry into big banks finds

first_imgAustralia’s big four banks were all part of the inquiry which is looking into residentialA FEDERAL inquiry investigating the decision making processes of Australia’s biggest banks has found that public outcry was sometimes the only thing preventing them from pushing mortgage rates higher.And the interim report of the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission’s residential mortgage price inquiry also highlighted the need for greater transparency in mortgage rate discounts offered by the banks.The interim report, out today, pointed to public criticism and media attention acting as a handbrake on bank ambitions to raise rates to boost margins.“Expectations of strong public reaction have acted as a constraint on pricing decisions,” it said, “ … without this reaction residential mortgage interest rates could have been higher and/or increases could have been introduced earlier.”“ … In one case, for example, an Inquiry Bank began considering an interest-rate increase, but staff recommended deferring any increase until a ‘trigger event’ occurred (either an Official Cash Rate change or a rate change by a big four bank) due to concerns about adverse publicity,” the report said. “At a different Inquiry Bank, as another example, a proposal to increase fees was substantially modified due to concern about reputational damage.”The inquiry also warned that there were “signs of a lack of vigorous price competition” among the Big Four banks in particular.“The internal documents of the Inquiry Banks reviewed by the ACCC to date reveal a lack of vigorous price competition between the Inquiry Banks, and the big four banks in particular.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus20 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market20 hours ago“The pricing behaviour of each of the Inquiry Banks appears more consistent with ‘accommodating’ a shared interest in avoiding the disruption of mutually beneficial pricing outcomes, rather than consistently vying for market share by offering the lowest interest rates.”The Big Four banks make up the lion’s share of the market, around three quarters.The Australian Banking Association was quick to defend competition levels in the banking sector, stating there were “over 140 providers, offering over 4,000 home loan products”.“Truly a vast and competitive market for Australians to choose a home loan.”It also said there were “very high levels of discounting in the Australian home loan market”.“It’s clear that competition is delivering better deals for customers, shopping around works and Australians should continue to do so to get the best discounts on the advertised rate.”The ABA said Galaxy research had found that three million people had switched banks in the last three years — with two-thirds finding that “switching was an easy process”.The ACCC was expected to issue its final report after the end of this financial year, delving into how the banks passed on the cost of the Major Bank Levy, as well as how smaller lenders can compete with bigger banks and how consumers can change residential mortgage pricing.last_img read more

Whicker: Montrezl Harrell, Clippers work hard on holidays, too

first_img Clippers hope they can play to their capabilities, quell Mavericks’ momentum The Clippers won 111-106 in a game featuring 16 lead changes and multiple mood swings.It was the Lakers’ fourth consecutive loss, but it seemed unlikely when they led by 10 at halftime and by 15 after Kawhi Leonard’s turnover became Avery Bradley’s layup in the third quarter.That was the Clippers’ 12th turnover. They would make only four in the final 21:26.The Lakers had 63 points in the first half. They had 43 in the second and shot 4 for 23 from 3-point land.The Lakers batted away eight Clippers shots in the first half, including an epic chase-down by Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. They had two in the second. So, if you must draw conclusions from the Clippers’ 33rd game and the Lakers’ 31st, you can say with tentative confidence that the Lakers don’t have anybody like Harrell and nobody has anybody like Leonard.You can also surmise that both teams have lots of bandwidth to fill since the Lakers are still relative strangers and the Clippers haven’t had their full cast until now.“We’re nowhere near what we’re going to be, I really believe that,” Rivers said. “It might not happen until the playoffs for all I know. But we know we’re not there yet.”“It’s a great stepping stone,” Harrell said. “We had to come on in the second half with a great mindset. We know we can’t put ourselves in the position we did in the first half. We just had to be the hard-playing team. If they still beat us with that, then we just have to live with it.”The Lakers and Clippers meet again Jan. 28 and March 8. For fans of what the NBA ought to be, there are few other reasons to live. Game 4 photos: Luka Doncic, Mavs shock Clippers in overtime Clippers’ Paul George: ‘If I make shots, this series could be a little different’ Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorcenter_img And Kyle Kuzma was 2 for 7 after halftime, 8 for 17 before.“We were letting him fly around freely,” Clippers forward Montrezl Harrell said. “His first four shots were uncontested. We just weren’t playing hard enough. We were doing more complaining than playing.”So Harrell flexed his heavy hands and scored 12 of his 18 in the second half, freeing the rim from the Lakers’ protection. (Such a thing might have been more difficult with more minutes from JaVale McGee).Leonard, doing his best-player-in-the-world impression, patiently chopped away with 35 points.The Clippers overcame a combined 8-for-26 effort from Paul George and Lou Williams, who scored 23 when they average nearly 44.And while the Lakers’ offense devolved into three onlookers waiting for James and Anthony Davis to invent something, the Clippers played and, particularly, defended as one.“It’s relentless,” Harrell said. “We put ourselves in position to get their rebounds, and then we got those 50-50 balls in the second half. We just have the luxury to switch a lot of things defensively, so if one thing isn’t working, we can go to something else.”The Lakers went where everyone knows they’ll go on the final possession after the Clippers had gone ahead by three.“They must have set four screens for him (James),” Harrell said. “We just kept switching. Pat got right up in him. You’ve seen these plays before. You give him space and he just sidesteps and raises up and shoots a 3. Pat wouldn’t let him put the ball on the ground. He took his air space. He’s not All-Defense for no reason.”Beverley reached up and jarred the ball loose, and a replay showed James was the final man to touch it before it went out of bounds.But Clippers coach Doc Rivers also liked Beverley’s offensive rebound of George’s missed 3-point shot with 5:42 left. That allowed George a second chance, and he hit a 20-footer to bring the Clippers to within three.Harrell got three offensive boards in the final 4½ minutes. He converted one of them for a 103-103 tie, and then the Clippers pointed Leonard toward the foul line, where he cashed six of eight.After James found Davis for a dunk with 4:58 left, the Lakers stayed outside the paint and got only one more field goal.Related Articles LOS ANGELES — Did you get your money’s worth? Considering the money it took, that’s hard to say.Was it a couple of hours well-spent on a strato-cumulus Christmas evening? Unquestionably.The Lakers and Clippers kept enforcing their belief this was just another NBA game, but we all know that’s not true, because we’ve seen other NBA games. They do not look or feel or sound like this. Nor are they priced like this. StubHub’s cheapest ticket was $450 late Wednesday afternoon.Patrick Beverley didn’t believe it either, screaming at friendly and hostile faces in the crowd after he dogged LeBron James into a sideline turnover with fewer than four seconds left. For Lakers’ LeBron James, Jacob Blake’s shooting is bigger issue than a big Game 4 victory What the Clippers are saying the day after Luka Doncic’s game-winner tied series, 2-2 last_img read more

Maxine Dwyer, 97, Wellington: Nov. 11, 1918 – Nov. 28, 2015

first_imgMaxine DwyerMaxine Dwyer, 97 of Wellington, died on Saturday, November 28, 2015 at the Wellington Nursing and Rehab in Wellington.Funeral Services will be at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, December 1 at the First United Methodist Church in Wellington. Burial will be in the Prairie Lawn Cemetery. Visitation will be held from 1 until 8 p.m. Monday, with the family greeting friends from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Shelley Family Funeral Home in Wellington. A memorial has been established with the First United Methodist Church of Wellington. Arrangements are with the Shelley Family Funeral Home of Wellington. To leave online condolences please visit Peace Dwyer was born on November 11, 1918, the daughter of John and Irene (Nelson) Mounce in Wellington. She was a 1936 graduate of the Wellington High School. Maxine was a homemaker who enjoyed people. She was united in marriage to Lawrence “LJ” Dwyer. She was a longtime member of the First united Methodist Church in Wellington. She enjoyed bowling for many years as well as Bingo at the V.F.W.Survivors include her son Larry Dwyer and wife Jeanne of Linn Valley, Kansas and 5 grandchildren, Boyd Lee Jones and wife Linda, Darren Dwyer and wife Lana, Jennifer Morris and husband Bill, Jill Dwyer and husband Mark Drever and Jeannine Russell and husband Pat and 9 great grandchildren and 7 great great grandchildren.Maxine was preceded in death by her parents and husband, one brother, 2 sisters, daughter, Jackie Dwyer and great-grandson, Jack Morris.last_img read more