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Workers Say Bank Profits Go Too Far

6 September 2006

Workers Say Bank Profits Go Too Far

Finsec, the bank workers' union, is supporting Kiwibank CEO, Sam Knowles' attack on the "undesirable" profit levels of New Zealand's four big Australian owned banks.

"The combined profit of $2.5 billion dollars by the Australian-owned banks is way too much," said Andrew Campbell, Finsec Campaigns Director. "These profit levels mean there is a significant outflow of hard earned New Zealand dollars to Australian shareholders and a fundamental underinvestment in the banks' New Zealand based staff and infrastructure."

"The enormous profits come at the expense of customers and bank staff. Customers face high fees and constant sales pitches and bank staff are increasingly finding bank wages and conditions uncompetitive". "A good example of this excessive profit drive has popped up in wage negotiations with New Zealand's largest bank, ANZ National. Despite making a $917 million profit last year the bank is baulking at a 5% pay claim. The gap between its offer and the workers' claim is less than 4/1000ths of last year's profit", said Campbell.

"The current profit levels are undesirable. More should be reinvested in New Zealand staff and infrastructure and not Australian shareholders' pockets."

ENDS

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