COBA to engage on pro-consumer agenda for credit cards

Australia’s customer-owned banks are confident that a Senate committee report on the credit card market has delivered positive recommendations that can be implemented quickly.

“We strongly support measures to empower consumers in the credit card market, subject to a sensible cost-benefit analysis,” COBA CEO Mark Degotardi said.

“The committee has adopted COBA’s recommendation for government to consider expanding financial literacy programs,” Mr Degotardi said.

“We welcome the committee’s cautious approach to more complex measures such as account number portability and customer-specific data records.”

Mr Degotardi said recommendations one and two on disclosure of rates and fees will help steer consumers towards the most competitively-priced credit card products.

“Recent COBA-commissioned polling from Essential Research found almost a third of people surveyed didn’t know their card interest rate, while more than half didn’t know who offered the best deals,” he said.

“Customer-owned banking institutions are already offering highly-competitive credit card products, and better informed consumers will drive an even more competitive market.”

Nine of the top 10 low-rate credit cards are offered by customer-owned banking institutions, according to the Mozo Experts Choice Awards 2015.

Meanwhile, according to Canstar, on average the customer-owned sector is 5.20 per cent lower than the major banks, with the big four average rate at 18.06 per cent and the customer owned banking sector average rate at 12.85 per cent.

[Related: Credit card providers are exploiting consumers: Flavell]

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