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High Time Banks Show Some Ethical Leadership


3 June 2010 at 3:09 pm
Lina Caneva
SPONSORED ARTICLE | While the advent of online cash accounts has allowed Australian’s to boost their investment returns, choosing the best account for an organisation has never been more complicated, according to ME Bank.


Lina Caneva | 3 June 2010 at 3:09 pm


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High Time Banks Show Some Ethical Leadership
3 June 2010 at 3:09 pm

While the advent of online cash accounts has allowed Australian’s to boost their investment returns, choosing the best account for an organisation has never been more complicated.

A large number of Australian banks have taken what should be a straightforward account and added all kinds of conditions that may catch unwary investors off guard. In fact, the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) currently has an investigation underway looking intoways in which the promotion of these accounts may be misleading customers.

Some of the marketing tactics used by banks to entice customers include:

  • Promoting special offer rates that are available for a period that is so short as to make the advertised benefits illusory.
  • Offering higher interest rates for new customers, leaving loyal existing customers with the lower standard rate.
  • Reducing the interest rate if withdrawals are made, undermining the purpose of an at-call account.
  • Promoting product features such as ‘no fees’ that are only available if the savings account is linked to a transaction account with the same bank, which carries fees.

While Australians await ASIC’s findings, it’s important to note that not all banks take the same approach.

At ME Bank, we believe this kind of conduct is not only unethical, but ultimately undermines the loyalty of customers and the community. Our Business Investment Account consistently pays a high rate of interest on every dollar invested, month after month. It carries no account keeping fees, no honeymoon or teaser rates and no minimum deposits or balances.

According to ME Bank Business Development Manager, Margaret Fewings, customers are definitely becoming more aware of these marketing tactics. “I often spend as much time pointing out all the conditions we don’t have as the account features we do”, she said. Whatever happened to straightforward banking?

ME Bank is 100% owned by some of Australia’s leading Industry Super Funds, including HESTA, and is a proud supporter of Pro Bono Australia. Find out more on about ME Bank >


Lina Caneva  |  Editor  |  @ProBonoNews

Lina Caneva has been a journalist for more than 35 years. She was the editor of Pro Bono Australia News from when it was founded in 2000 until 2018.

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