Thousands farewell big four banks

On World Consumer Rights Day, we're calling on all Australians to join the global Move Your Money campaign.
 
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01.Move your money

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CHOICE has marked 50 years since John F Kennedy made his famous speech about consumer rights this World Consumer Rights Day by delivering a giant farewell card on behalf of thousands of Australians to the big four banks.

The farewell message comes as CHOICE releases new analysis from Mozo showing potential savings of over $3500 per year for consumers who switch to smaller institutions.

“On World Consumer Rights Day, and here in Australia we are calling it Move Your Money Day, with a giant farewell message from thousands of consumers to the big four banks,” said CHOICE director of campaigns and communications, Christopher Zinn.

“Over the last three weeks, more than 4000 Australians have signed up to the CHOICE Move Your Money campaign, pledging to look for a better deal beyond the big four banks, and if they find one, switch and save.

“The figures released today show that there are genuine savings for those prepared to look past the major banks and find a better deal, whether it be on home loans, savings accounts or credit cards,” says Mr Zinn.

CHOICE is a member of the worldwide consumer organisation, Consumers International (CI). In 2012, CI is encouraging people around the globe to switch banks if their existing financial institution is not giving them the service and terms they want.

Figures speak for themselves

The figures from Mozo, who power CHOICE’s Compare, Ditch and Switch comparison tool, reveal that despite the big four having an 80 per cent share of the market in home loans and household deposits, there are big savings for those prepared to "think small":

  • With savings accounts, a smaller institution would pay $328 a year more on a $5000 deposit than the worst offering from a Big 4 institution;
  • With credit cards, a consumer could save $449 a year by switching their $3000 debt from the worst of the Big 4 products to a smaller player; and
  • With a home loan, consumers can save an average of $2773 by switching a $300 000 mortgage from the Big 4 to a smaller lender.

These examples alone add up to $3550 over one year. Over five years, these savings total $17 750, and over the 25-30 years of most home loans the savings are significant.

“The CHOICE Move Your Money campaign challenges the notion that switching is too difficult or that there are no better deals out there,” says Mr Zinn.

“While some barriers remain, switching is easier than ever before, and as today’s figures show, there are plenty of competitive deals out there for those prepared to shop around.”

Everyone who signs the CHOICE Move Your Money petition at choice.com.au/moveyourmoney will send a message to the big four banks that "enough is enough", and will receive unbiased tips on how to look for a better banking deal, including a CHOICE Switching Kit.

Facts about World Consumer Rights Day and the Move Your Money campaign

  • 15 March is World Consumer Rights Day, marking the day in 50 years ago when US President John F Kennedy first outlined a definition of consumer rights.
  • In 2012, the theme of World Consumer Rights Day is "Our Money, our rights – campaigning for real choice in financial services", and the CHOICE Move Your Money campaign is part of this global effort to improve competition in financial services.
  • Savings figures mentioned above have been compiled by Mozo.
  • An online survey of around 2500 CHOICE members has shown a substantial proportion of those who had recently switched their home loan said that it was easy or very easy, while a few noted their old bank had been slow in finalising paperwork.
  • Overwhelmingly, the main reasons members gave for wanting to switch were uncompetitive interest rates and their loyalty not being acknowledged.

Take a look at CHOICE Chair, Jenni Mack's address on World Consumer Rights Day.

For more news, see our Consumer news section.

 
 

 

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