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Westpac back down on smoke screen

Press Release
Bank Customer Action Collective

Last month WestpacTrust's CEO proudly claimed that they have 1.3 Millon NZ customers and they treasure every one of them.

To put things into perspective a good example is the case where WestpacTrust went as far as the Disputes Tribunal, over a $20 fee that a customer challenged. The tribunal awarded in favour of the customer and the tribunal judge congratulated the customer on his brave and forthright stand on a principal of fairness.

Why would a corporate the size of Westpac make such a stand for so little?

Maybe if you have 1.3 Million customers and say you get an extra $20 each out of them it does make sense, this tiny amount per customer would net the bank $ 2.6 million. Most people would not even notice if their bank had taken an extra $20 in fact most are too scared to even ask about fees. This could apply every month in many cases as we have established and reported that Pensioners were being incorrectly charged an average of over $16 per month by some banks (not WestpacTrust). So if Westpac overcharged e.g. half of their customers an extra $20 monthly this would nett them $15.6 million per year. (Chicken feed?)

It has been proven that the top four British banks overcharged their customers $16.3 Billion per year and this organisation has evidence that a relative figure is being overcharged by banks in New Zealand.

In fact we have reported to the appropriate authorities several cases of serious overcharging amounting to large sums, but to date all cases reported have been fobbed off or covered over.

Recently on the "Holmes Show" an expert speaking in favour of the bankers rights to charge fees as of right, defended Westpac trust for charging a particular $20 fee, irrespective of the fact that the disputes tribunal had judged against Westpac.

If the rest of us take money we are not entitled to, it is called theft and/or in similar cases where people help themselves to other peoples money in their care, it is called fraud.

End: Contact 025329491


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