The Customer Owned Banking Association (COBA) has welcomed a report by professional services giant KPMG which highlights the mutual sector’s solid growth and encouraging prospects.
KPMG’s Mutuals Industry Review 2015 found that total assets for Australia’s mutual banks grew by 7.4 per cent in 2014-15, while capital levels were above the minimum requirements at 17.8 per cent, compared to 13.4 per cent for the major banks.
The report also revealed that the total number of customers in the mutual banking sector increased by 0.5 per cent, while impairment provisions remain low at 0.08 per cent.
COBA chief executive Mark Degotardi said the KPMG report is solid evidence of how customer-owned banks are positively responding to consumers in a changing market.
“Customer-owned banking in Australia is growing and taking steps to enjoy the benefits of disruption and change in financial services,” he said.
“Our institutions are being agile and innovative in responding to the challenges ahead and looking at collaborative ways to increase awareness and market share.
“As the report acknowledges, customer-owned institutions have already entered into innovative partnerships with new fintech players as yet another way of providing the products and services consumers are seeking.”
Mr Degotardi said the customer-owned model “is just as relevant in 2015 as it ever has been”.