On 23rd October 2010 I published a book entitled ‘PLAUSIBLE DENIABILITY’. That was some eight years ago now. In my book I highlighted the problems that I had identified within our banking system. I subsequently sent a copy of my book by email to all our politicians and those in Government, and I’m still waiting for someone to reply.
If a Royal Commission had been instigated following the Storm Financial scandal, as it should have been, it would certainly have saved a lot of grief for those that have been fleeced by the banks since. Certainly there was enough evidence to warrant such.
Nothing this Royal Commission has found is new to the victims of Storm and the Banks that aligned themselves with that company.
"Falsification of documents, breach of contractual agreements, and breach of banking codes, etc. You name it and the banks and Storm were in it".
Because ASIC sat on its hands then and the Government sought to protect the banks at the time rather than the victims of their misconduct, we have a state of affairs where the banks have run riot and thousands more have suffered. I hate to say it, but I told you so!
Here are some extracts from my book.
“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.” Matthew 7:15
“How does one best describe what happened to us and encapsulate it all in the title of a book? I must admit that I seriously considered calling this book, “FUBAR” which is an acronym that became popular in World War 2 when someone wanted to express their dissatisfaction in strong terms.
It stands for “Fu#ked Up Beyond All Repair/Recognition”. Actually, the origins of FUBAR are not known with any certainty but it may well have derived from the German word ‘furchtbar’ which means awful and terrible.
If my words are making you feel faint at this point, try sitting here in this dung heap that these corporate criminals have created for us. It just reeks of corruption!
When Storm’s clients lost $3 billion in savings and assets, it was indeed ‘Furchtbar’ (AWFUL and TERRIBLE) because so many who lost everything, leaving them completely destitute, were elderly Australians. Make no mistake about the effect it has had on their lives. It has simply destroyed them.
The fact that the majority of them shaped this country and instilled in it a set of values doesn’t mean an iota to this Government or the financial institutions that milked them for profit and abandoned them when everything went pear shaped.
Whilst the world of those Storm investors is now well and truly FUBAR and this would indeed have been a suitable title for this book, it just didn’t quite suit somehow! I then toyed with the idea of calling it “AUSTRALIAN CONSPIRACY” because this title does describes what happened then and what is still happening now. The alliances certain Banks and Storm formed with one another and the covert agreements they had in place were the prime cause of so many losing so much. These Banks and Storm certainly did plot together to use their clients’ assets for personal gain, and by so doing, they went beyond the bounds of responsible financial advice and prudent banking practice.
In the end though I decided to call it “PLAUSIBLE DENIABILITY” because this seems to best describe the situation that currently exists where the Banks are concerned.
Now, you are probably scratching your heads and wondering what the heck “plausible deniability” means.
“Plausible deniability” for those that are not familiar with this strategy is one where the upper rungs of management in an organization pass the blame to those on the lower rungs, and the people on the lower rungs are often inaccessible (sacked in the case of the CBA). It, then becomes difficult to establish exactly who is to blame. It’s a ploy often used by those that gave the orders in the first place to distance themselves from any responsibility. In the case that illegal or otherwise disreputable and unpopular activities become public, high-ranking executives will employ this ruse to deny any awareness of such acts by those below them in the chain of command.
The CEO’s of the CBA, the Macquarie Bank and the Bank of Queensland seem to fit the bill perfectly.
The term "plausible deniability" can also apply to any act that leaves little or no evidence of wrongdoing or abuse. On this score, Storm Financial and the Banks involved fall down badly. There’s enough evidence lying around to condemn them all, if only we can get them into a court room.
Unfortunately, parties such as the Parliamentary Joint-Committee and ASIC who have been investigating this matter seem to have trouble focusing on the body of evidence relating to the crimes of the Banks. One has to presume that Storm Financial is easier quarry to hunt down.
Plausible deniability is also a legal concept by the way. It refers to lack of evidence (or so the Banks think) proving an allegation. Standards of proof vary in civil and criminal cases. In civil cases, the standard of proof is "more likely so than not" whereas in a criminal matter, the standard is "beyond a reasonable doubt"
If your opponent lacks incontrovertible proof (evidence) of their allegation, you can "plausibly deny" the allegation even though it may be true.
Well, Bro! Do we have news for you!
Storm Financial and the Banks involved with that company are, of course, the chief perpetrators! However, these financial bodies could only have operated in this way when a culture of “free market” policies was allowed to flourish. Those in authority who failed to identify the wrongdoings of Storm and the Banks until it was all too late are, by default, themselves tacit accomplices. Their inertia now, their lack of foresight then, their dereliction of duty to Australian investors in general, and the elderly in particular who were led to believe that investing was safe, should be roundly condemned by all. By failing to bring the Banks involved to task, they are adding insult to injury.
The facts of the matter are plain enough. Certain major banks in this country formed an unholy alliance with Storm Financial – FACT! Those banks were instrumental in promoting Storm Financial’s shady practices and high risk schemes - FACT! These banks are now endeavoring to COVER-UP their dealings with that advisory firm – FACT!
Why then, we must ask, is this Government and ASIC going soft on these corporate criminals? Can’t they see that these banks are simply shrugging their shoulders and thumbing their nose at this Government and ASIC.
When questioned the banks offer lame excuses, “Not us Mister! We did nothing wrong!” Well, this time, they have been caught with their hands in their customers’ pockets, and they should be made to return what they have stolen. What’s more, they should be punished because that is what one does to those that have broken the law. This book seeks to expose Storm Financial and the Banks for what they really were, “false prophets and ravenous wolves” that bled their customers dry for financial gain without any regard for the consequences.
As I write, the story of Storm Financial and the Banks allied with it is ongoing. ASIC is still investigating the collapse of Storm and no prosecutions have yet taken place. Therefore, the complete story of Storm and the Banks will not be known until all the facts come to light. If the Banks have their way, they never will.
Fortunately, there is enough evidence available now to build a case, and lay the blame for this financial disaster squarely with Storm Financial and the Banks concerned. These parties were the ones that had covert agreements with one another, and they were the ones that devised schemes and strategies designed primarily to suck money out of their customers. They mutually promoted high-risk investments that were beneficial for them but left their customers completely exposed to market fluctuations with disastrous consequences. Why ASIC has so far failed to see this is a mystery in itself.
Since the collapse of Storm Financial, I have been an active poster on the ‘SICAG’ Group and ‘SOB’ (my own discussion Group). SOB by the way is an acronym for “Storming on Banks.” However, as one member of SOB was quick to point out, it could equally stand for “Sick of Bull-shitters! I hope he wasn’t referring to me?
This book is a compilation of my many postings on these Groups, and some of my past correspondence with ASIC, the CBA, the Macquarie Banks, the Bank of Queensland, the Parliamentary Joint Committee, the Government and others expressing points of law, outlining flawed procedures, highlighting criminal acts, pointing out blatant misrepresentation etc. I have also quoted various media articles, and I have echoed comments made by others that emphasize a particular point.
In parts of this book, because of the subject matter, it doesn’t make for avid reading. Points of law for instance for some can be BLOODY BORING! However, it is not meant to be a thriller. If anything, it’s more a horror story! Therefore, I have tried to lighten the mood at times by introducing some humor to the narrative. The subject matter, however, is far from humorous.
I have written this book primarily for the benefit of those that have suffered at the hands of Storm and the banks in order that they can fully understand what has occurred and come to grips with the issues involved. This book is basically designed to inform people about the circumstances that led up to these losses, and to help them readily identify the cause and the wrongdoers.
Many of those that lost money in Storm do not have access to any Group and they must therefore rely on information provided by the media, their solicitors if any, or other information outlets. I hope this book will be helpful for those people. If others find it of interest, so be it.
I have learnt among other things in my life that knowledge is power! Only by knowing what really happened can anyone make an informed judgement about anything. Only by knowing will you be able to fully comprehend what these banks and Storm did and why the banks must now pay.
This book is basically about four villains: Storm Financial, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, the Macquarie Bank, and the Bank of Queensland. This book focuses on these “Four Riders of this Australian Financial Apocalypse.” (Not a bad book title that! - A sequel perhaps!)
However, it should be noted that there were other Banks caught up in the Storm labyrinth, and they must also share some of the blame. They were all like pigs at a trough devouring their customers’ monies greedily.
In this book I have tried not to pervert the facts as many have but rather say it as it is without fear or favour. If, in so doing, I upset a few people, so be it! If I upset a few bankers, great! If I upset anyone that was once part of the Storm Financial hierarchy, I would ask them to put themselves in our place. They’ll never be as upset as we are; the people Storm and the Banks took for a financial ride.
This book will also serve, I hope, to remind those in Government and ASIC of their duty to prosecute the wrongdoers to the full extent of the law. This matter is too important to thousands of elderly Australians to ignore any longer. It has to taken out of the “too hard basket” and something has to be done NOW!
The focus of this book is not on Storm Financial despite its leading role in all this because it is no more. Having said that, the directors of Storm Financial were the architects of this Australian tragedy and I have sought to explain their part in all this as fully as I can.
The arch villains that do remain are, of course, the Banks. They always survive because they are protected by the Government of the day, and they are therefore, to all intents and purposes, above the law. They are sacrosanct, so to speak!
Because this state of affairs is allowed to continue infinitum, the Banks ride roughshod over their customers’ interests, violate their own banking codes of conduct, treat ASIC as fools, have the money to “offset any Storm” and churn money out of all and sundry at every available opportunity. They are completely without scruples of any kind, and they have no shame. Then they have the barefaced effrontery to continually advertise that they are the best because THEY CARE! The only thing they care about is money. Theirs! Not ours!
The truth of the matter is that the individuals in these Banks conspired with Storm Financial to milk their customers for gain, and they did so unlawfully. They should therefore be prosecuted accordingly under the laws laid down to protect consumers. Nothing less is warranted.
As for the head honchos in those Banks, they should resign because they are either inept or corrupt, or both. “We are not responsible! Don’t blame us! We didn’t know what was going on!” Like Hell they didn’t!
President Harry S. Truman had a sign with the inscription “The Buck Stops Here!” sitting on his desk. This was meant to indicate that he didn't “pass the buck” to anyone else, but accepted personal responsibility for the way the country was governed.
Maybe some of these Banks’ CEO’s should take a leaf out of his book. Then again they could be telling a few “pork pies” about not knowing, that is! What do you think?
Nah! The Banks would never do that!
I can tell you this! The one thing that these banks fear the most is being prosecuted because the law, at least, provides a level playing field where the influence of vested interests can no longer be exerted. The principles of commercial, statute, and criminal law that apply in a court room will bring these banks down. They know it! The question is, “Are you willing, and for that matter able, to sue these bandits?” If you are, you will need to join the class actions that are currently underway. Numbers are the key!
As for this Government and the regulatory policeman, ASIC, they need the intestinal fortitude to get off their backsides and act. Until then the question must always linger, “Who is actually governing this country?” At the moment it seems that big business in the guise of the Banks and other large commercial interests are, and the Government is merely a puppet that waits for its strings to be pulled.
ASIC has a duty to ascertain who is to blame and prosecute those individuals that have perverted the laws of this country. We, the people that have suffered as a consequence of their actions expect nothing less. Indeed, to do nothing less makes these Governing bodies complicit in their own right.
There is a self-evident truth! “When good men do nothing, they are no longer good. Many have the mistaken notion that good is merely the absence of doing that, which is wrong. Not so! One is good not merely because he does no evil, but because he is actively working for what is good.”
At the moment, everything is still ‘FUBAR’ and will remain so until someone has the guts to do something about it.
THE MOTIVATING FORCE – GREED! Page 8
"Man condemns things eternal for the sake of temporal things." Thomas Aquinas (2, 118, ad 1)
In order to fully appreciate what happened and why Storm Financial collapsed like a deck of cards, it is important to understand the cause. It wasn’t, as many believe, because the stock markets plummeted at the end of 2008. Other investors survived despite that! Certainly, they were left somewhat battered and bruised but they weren’t blown away in the STORM as we all were! Why was that?
I’ll answer that in one word, ‘GREED!”
Let’s go back for a moment in history to illustrate what I mean.
Following the American Civil War, there were a couple of different currencies in circulation, one reducing in value and less reliable.
City banks peddled mortgages widely on new farmland they had never seen. A new farmer could sign up in either currency. Then the Government consolidated the two currencies in to one. Farmers that had taken out mortgages in the inferior currency took a loss. They were left in many instances owing the banks up to twice what they owed.
They had foolishly believed in the government of the day’s promise that hard work brings wealth. The reality, they found, was somewhat different. Whilst they worked hard, they actually lost money on their slow-producing farms.
Meanwhile, the banks flourished. They grew spectacularly. When questioned about this, the banks argued that they were only being patriotic.
Despite the fact that 145 years has passed, nothing really has changed. Banks still merrily churn money out of their customers. When something goes wrong such as the Storm Financial collapse, the banks deny responsibility and walk away. The Government protects these Banks because the economy might suffer if the Banks do not remain strong.
The people that the banks rort (we call them victims, the Banks call them customers) become what is known as “collateral damage. “Your sacrifice is necessary for the sake of the shareholders’’, they will rationalize.
Behind your back they will whisper, “Serves them right anyway! Would you let your dog out on the street when we’re loose? Then again, who gives a shit anyway! We’re all right, Jack! Stuff you!”
You must admit! They do have a point! “Greed is good!” Ask the Greek who came bearing gifts.
Gordon Gekko, a fictional character and the main protagonist of the 1987 film “WALL STREET “ was, no doubt, speaking on behalf of the rapacious dogs of this world when he famously said this very thing, “Greed is good!”
Geckos (almost the same thing) are small lizards that will drop their tails as a defense mechanism when they are attacked; a process that is called autotomy. The attacker then concentrates on the discarded tail which is still moving and forgets all about the gecko which remains perfectly still and does nothing. This is a good description of the way the banks have acted since the collapse of Storm. They have sat still and blamed everything on Storm in the hope that the attention of the media, ASIC and this Government will be focused on the offenders within Storm Financial and away from them. So far it seems to have worked a treat!
We live in a time of corporate greed and social inequality. We also live in a world where 20% of the population consumes 80% of the world's goods. Nothing will ever change in our society because too many avaricious people control too much of our economy. Bankers predominate in this regard. They rule the roost. They reign supreme.
“PLAUSIBLE DENIABILITY” is basically a story of GREED. Not as many would have you believe, on the part of the investors who entrusted Storm Financial and the banks with their money, but rather corporate greed by Storm Financial and the Banks associated with that company. They filched monies out of their customers by employing a policy of over-leveraging that was irresponsible, self-serving to Storm and the Banks, and downright risky for their customers. No real benefits accrued to investors by being so involved, just massive debts. The Banks and Storm inveigled their customers in “high risk” investment schemes that ultimately destroyed their customers’ share portfolios.
When it all fell apart, guess what? The Banks said, “It was all Storm’s fault! They didn’t know what was going on! They didn’t do anything wrong!”
Well, I’m here to tell you differently! The people involved are no less than liars and thieves, driven by the bottom line that dictated everything they did.
Word of mouth is a wonderful vehicle for passing things on. Tell, your children, your grandchildren, your friends, neighbors and relatives about such institutions who encourage their people to deceive customers. Expose these parasites for what they really are; banking institutions that thrive on other peoples’ misery. They are in essence nothing more than corporate criminals that no one in their right mind should ever entrust money with again. Boycott them and ask others to do the same, because only by so doing, will people in Australian get a fair deal! A deal that benefits both them, the customer, and the Bank equally.
Then again, this might be a pipedream because it is difficult to find good men in a den of thieves. Bankers have long ago abandoned any notions of integrity and seek instead to make more and more whilst you get less and less. It is the nature of the beast, I’m afraid!
Whilst greed is anathema to good men, to those that are base in character, it is the center of their existence. They strive to make more and more money no matter what the cost.
In the case of Storm, it was human tragedy on a grand scale. But then I forgot, “Greed is good! Mr. Ralph Norris who is the chairman of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (a major player in the Storm disaster) certainly thinks so because he has now got a pay rise to the tune of 16.2 million a year. In times gone by he would have been stripped of his rank and shunned for conduct unbecoming. These days, it seems that you are measured in banking circles by the amount of money you can make for your Bank with no questions asked.
"Now is the winter of our discontent made even worse by the executives of the CBA!” It’s enough to make you weep!
The poor saps who run this country and those who regulate the financial industry are only earning a fraction of Mr. Norris’ loot. No wonder Mr. Norris and others in the banking fraternity treat the people in Government with such distain. Why? Because they believe that everyone should be like them!
“If these Government employees had any sense, they would have become bankers like us. Let’s toss a coin! Will I be a politician or a banker? Will I be “Bloody Silly” or “Good old Billy”? Will I work in a bank where greed is good or will I work for the Government and be a sap!”
It’s really no contest, is it?
The point is that at the end of the day, there always has to be a reckoning. You can only sell your soul to the Devil for so long before he slaps you with a final notice. However, this is small comfort for those that are suffering because a few conspirators were too greedy for our good.
For those that have suffered at the hands of these Banks, we now believe it is time this Government stopped being saps and slapped these banks hard with some final demands. Make them pay up and make them cop their punishment because, in the final analysis, the people of this country have elected a government and it, not the banks, should have the final say!
We want to hear this Government CONDEMN THESE BANKS! We want this Government to ACT! We want this Government to GOVERN!
If not we’ll make it our business to elect a Government next time that has the stomach to take these banks down!
I will be sending a copy of “PLAUSIBLE DENIABILITY” to those in Government that have the power to do something. Let’s hope that they are receiving our message loud and clear.
If I end up inside, at least I’ll have a roof over my head and a warm bed. Having been associated with Storm Financial and the Banks for fifteen months before they finished us all off, I am now hardened to associating with criminals and I should have no problem fitting right in! [End of extracts from PLAUSIBLE DENIABILITY]
Here’s some food for thought! In the period that has passed since the demise of Storm Financial in March of 2009 through April 2016, 54 further banking scandals have occurred:
Wednesday 6 April 2016
Former ANZ planner jailed for stealing almost $1m
A former ANZ planner was jailed for more than six years (between April 2009 and December 2015) for stealing almost $1m from an elderly client to feed a gambling debt. ANZ promised to reimburse the victim. An appeal can be lodged.
Tuesday 5 April 2016
Westpac subsidiary paid penalties of $493,000 after breaching consumer protections
A subsidiary of Westpac Banking Corporation, paid penalties totalling $493,000 after ASIC found it breached important consumer protection provisions relating to the repossession of motor vehicles, including failing to provide customers with default notices prior to commencing enforcement proceedings to repossess mortgaged vehicles; and failing to provide customers with legally required information setting out their rights within the required time frame after it repossessed mortgaged vehicles.
Tuesday 5 April 2016
ASIC sued Westpac over alleged market manipulation in setting bank bill swap rate.
ASIC started legal proceedings in the federal court in Melbourne against Westpac for unconscionable conduct and market manipulation in relation to Westpac's involvement in setting the bank bill swap reference rate in the period 6 April 2010 and 6 June 2012. It is alleged that Westpac traded in a manner intended to create an artificial price for bank bills on 16 occasions during the period of 6 April 2010 and 6 June 2012. Westpac denied the allegations and said it would defend the claims.
Monday 4 April 2016
ANZ announces it reported three breaches of dispute resolution requirements
ANZ told a parliamentary inquiry that for 2014-15, it had reported three breaches of the internal dispute resolution requirements under the code of banking practice to the code compliance monitoring committee and six in 2013-14. Two breaches for 2014-15 were self-identified and one was raised with ANZ by the committee.
Wednesday 30 March 2016
ANZ announced it would refund $5m
ANZ announced it would refund approximately $5m to 25,000 customers after it failed to properly apply some fee reductions and fee waivers for certain customers.
Thursday 17 March 2016
ASIC imposed conditions on Macquarie financial services license
ASIC imposed additional conditions on Macquarie Bank Limited’s Australian Financial Services (AFS) licence for breaches relating to the handling of client money between March 2004 and 2014. The breaches raised issues including failing to deposit monies into a designated client trust account; and making withdrawals that were not permitted from such an account. Macquarie has filed an application for review of the decision and asked for stay of the new conditions pending the review. Macquarie said it treated client money with the utmost seriousness and self-reported the incidents.
Tuesday 15 March 2016
ANZ gives $4.5m compensation for breaches
ANZ confirmed engagement of PricewaterhouseCoopers in January 2016 to conduct an independent compliance review within its OnePath subsidiaries, following compliance breaches that were proactively reported to ASIC from early 2013. Since February 2013, ANZ has compensated about $4.5m to around 1.3 million OnePath customers for breaches including not following up on some unbanked cheques and for superannuation contributions not being allocated to the customer’s correct account.
Monday 7 March 2016
ASIC found ANZ breached responsible lending laws
ASIC found ANZ breached responsible lending laws in making offers of overdraft facilities to its customers and ordered it to pay penalties totalling $212,500.
Monday 7 March 2016
CommInsure chief medical officer blows whistle on unethical practices
The former chief medical officer of CBA’s insurance arm, CommInsure, makes claims about a culture of dishonest and unethical practices to avoid payouts to sick and dying people. The chief medical officer revealed doctors were pressured to change their opinions, outdated medical definitions were used to deny payouts, and medical files disappeared from the internal filing system. CBA's chief executive, Ian Narev, said 'I'm aware … and we've discussed individual cases where the outcomes that the customers have received for policies that they took out have not been good enough'. Allegations of deleting files 'would be completely inconsistent with the culture that we are building at the Commonwealth Bank and inconsistent with the way that we run the bank'.
Friday 4 March 2016
ASIC sued ANZ for alleged market manipulation in setting bank bill swap rate
ASIC started legal proceedings in the federal court against ANZ for alleged unconscionable conduct and market manipulation in relation to the ANZ's involvement in setting the bank bill swap reference rate, which affects commercial and personal loan rates.
ASIC alleges that ANZ traded in a manner intended to create an artificial price for bank bills on 44 separate days during the period of 9 March 2010 to 25 May 2012. ANZ rejected the allegations and said it would vigorously defend the legal action. It said
ASIC had advised it had no concerns about the bank’s current market practices.
Thursday 3 March 2016
ASIC banned former NAB adviser for misleading and deceptive conduct
ASIC banned a former NAB adviser for five years for engaging in misleading and deceptive conduct including falsely representing that he was a member of a superannuation fund in order to obtain unauthorised information about a member’s account. An appeal can be lodged to the AAT.
Tuesday 16 February 2016
ASIC banned a former director of a Macquarie subsidiary for breach of duties
ASIC banned a former director and responsible manager of a Macquarie subsidiary for six years for breaching his duties in 2011 as an officer of a responsible entity of a registered management investment scheme. Conduct included creating fake emails to extract confidential information from his fund’s competitors. An appeal can be lodged to the AAT.
Thursday 4 February 2016
ASIC banned former NAB adviser for forging client signatures
ASIC banned a former NAB adviser for seven years for engaging in misleading and deceptive conduct including forging client’s signatures on change of adviser forms and receiving the remuneration that flowed from processing these false forms. An appeal can be lodged to the AAT.
Thursday 4 February 2016
CBA staff accused of complicity in Ponzi scheme worth $76m
The Sydney Morning Herald reported that two CBA staff were allegedly complicit in an elaborate Ponzi scheme worth $76m. The alleged architects of the scam will face court in February 2017 and have indicated they will plead not guilty to almost 100 fraud and deception offences.
Tuesday 2 February 2016
Commonwealth Bank offers $3m compensation for financial advice to date
The Australian reported that the Commonwealth Bank of Australia has so far offered nearly $3m to people affected by its financial planning scandal as part of its open advice review, and paid more than $2m to victims of shoddy advice, with more than 6,000 cases still in the program.
Wednesday 20 January 2016
Westpac paid $1m fine over credit limit practices
Westpac paid $1m following ASIC's concerns about credit card limit increase practices. ASIC's concerns included the bank's failure to make reasonable inquiries about some consumers' income and employment status before increasing their credit card limit.
Friday 15 January 2016
Two dismissed ANZ traders caim culture of sex, drugs and alcohol
The Sydney Morning Herald reported that two traders dismissed by ANZ for inappropriate behaviour are suing the bank for tens of millions of dollars, claiming a rampant culture of sex, drugs and alcohol was condoned among senior staff on the dealing floor.
ANZ said the staff were dismissed for serious breaches of its code and it would 'be vigorously defending both their court applications'.
Friday 18 December 2015
ASIC permanently banned former WA branch bank manager
ASIC permanently banned a former Western Australia branch bank manager, after being convicted and sentenced for nine counts of stealing as a servant and one count of gaining a benefit by fraud, for making unauthorised withdrawals from various bank accounts in a friend's name, totalling $515,000.
Thursday 10 December 2015
Macquarie Securities paid $110,000 penalty over market integrity rules
Macquarie Securities (Australia) Limited paid a penalty of $110,000 for allegedly contravening one of the ASIC market integrity rules 2010 and the Corporations Act. The penalty was for failing to prevent a non-designated trading representative from submitting trading messages.
Wednesday 25 November 2015
CBA issues $80m refund
ASIC announced the CBA would refund approximately $80m to around 216,000 wealth package customers as compensation for failing to apply fee waivers, interest concessions and other benefits since 2008. The refund payments include an additional amount of interest to recognise the time elapsed since the relevant benefit was not applied. CBA discovered the breach following a customer complaint and reported it to ASIC in 2014.
Thursday 12 November 2015
ANZ provides $13m compensation after failing to pay bonus interest
ASIC announced ANZ would provide around $13m compensation to 200,000 customers after it failed to accurately apply bonus interest to Progress Saver accounts for a number of years. The refund payment included an additional amount to recognise the time elapsed since the initial breach. ANZ discovered the breach following a customer complaint and reported it to ASIC.
Thursday 29 October 2015
Westpac offered refunds over unneeded insurance cover
Following ASIC surveillance, Westpac offered to refund premiums to 10,600 insurance customers who paid for insurance cover they did not need. Customers were charged for loan protection insurance when they did not have a loan and did not intend to be covered.
Monday 19 October 2015
CBA to refund $7.6m due to failure to waive fees
ASIC announced CBA would refund $7.6m to 8,400 CBA customers for failing to provide advertised fee waivers and other benefits of services package. CBA discovered the error and reported it to ASIC in 2014.
Thursday 15 October 2015
ASIC banned Westpac subsidiary answer for unauthorised transfers
ASIC permanently banned an adviser of a Westpac subsidiary for transferring funds from clients’ accounts without authorisation, falsely creating documents including emails and bank statements, and perpetuating the false documents on client accounts.
Friday 24 July 2015
NAB wealth management to pay $25m compensation
ASIC reported NAB’s wealth management business announcing it would pay $25m in compensation to 62,000 customers following a system error on its navigator wrap platform relating to estimation of income and tax. NAB Wealth appointed PricewaterhouseCoopers to review the process.
Monday 25 May 2015
ASIC banned Macqurie Equities representative after unauthorised trading
ASIC banned a former representative of Macquarie Equities Limited after he engaged in unauthorised discretionary trading on his clients' accounts and created false records. Macquarie Equities reported the conduct to ASIC.
Tuesday 5 May 2015
ANZ to reimburse customers $30m
The Age reported that ANZ would reimburse $30m for miscalculated interest on credit card cash advances, impacting millions of customers.
Tuesday 21 April 2015
CBA announces it has reported 12 advisers to police for fraud or forgery since 2011
CBA told the Senate economics references committee that it had reported 12 CBA advisers to the police over allegations of fraud or forgery since 2011; and that 43 planners had left in previous three years, including some who left while under investigation.
Tuesday 21 April 2015
ANZ announces it has sacked 16 planners in 3 years
ANZ told the Senate economics references committee that in the 12 months to April 2015 it had reported six ANZ planners to ASIC for breaches; and terminated the employment of 16 planners over the previous three years for behaviours that range from cultural differences and inappropriate behaviour through to the serious compliance breaches reported to ASIC.
Tuesday 21 April 2015
NAB announces it has sacked 41 planners in 5 years
NAB told the Senate economics references committee that 41 planners dismissed over past five years and it has reported 10 planners to ASIC for breaches.
Tuesday 21 April 2015
NAB announces a total of $14.5m compensation over 4 years
NAB told the Senate economics references committee that it had compensated more than 750 of its financial advice customers a total of $14.5m between January 2010 and September 2014.
Tuesday 21 April 2015
Macquarie announces total of $9.5m compensation
Macquarie Bank told the Senate economics references committee it had paid $9.5m in compensation to clients of financial advice and reported 11 advisers to ASIC. Macquarie was reviewing 2500 client files for possible compensation and found out of 320 files already there were 65 clients eligible for compensation.
Monday 20 April 2015
Westpac sued over alleged misleading and deceptive conduct
The Sydney Morning Herald reported that a Queensland businessman was suing Westpac for misleading and deceptive conduct after the bank allegedly slotted him into highly leveraged financial products and blew up $4m in savings.
Thursday 16 April 2015
ANZ to reimburse $30m in fees
The ABC reported that 8,500 ANZ customers were sold advice packages but did not receive services included in the package. ANZ was due to reimburse $30m in fees.
Wednesday 15 April 2015
NAB's British banks receive $38.8m fine over insurance complaints
NAB's British banks received a record $38.8m fine from Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority for 'serious failings' in handling complaints regarding payment protection insurance to up to 90,000 customers of UK subsidiary.
Friday 27 March 2015
Two former CBA executives charged over alleged bribery
Two former CBA executives charged over alleged bribery scandal for allegedly receiving more than $1.9m in return for awarding an IT contract to a particular company. The matter is ongoing and the pair will face a hearing in the Downing Centre local court on 6 June.
Tuesday 17 March 2015
Former NAB foreign exchange trader jailed for insider trading
A former NAB foreign exchange trader was sentenced to seven years jail for insider trading after pleading guilty to masterminding a $7m crime.
Thursday 26 February 2015
ASIC banned former Westpac home finance manager
ASIC permanently banned a former Westpac home finance manager following conviction of fraud for withdrawing over $113,000 from ATMs after obtaining eight credit cards using false names.
Friday 13 February 2015
Macquarie Equities enforceable undertaking concludes after systemic deficiencies
A two-year enforceable undertaking between ASIC and Macquarie Equities Limited concluded. The enforceable undertaking was entered into in January 2013 after ASIC found 'systemic deficiencies' in its compliance with financial services laws.
Tuesday 10 February 2015
Former financial planner jailed for defrauding more than $5.9m
A former financial planner was jailed for defrauding more than 150 clients of more than $5.9m over a period of 20 years, including eight years of working for ANZ subsidiary. The company cooperated with ASIC, investigated the matter, ensured thorough remediation, and terminated the adviser's authorisation once wrongdoing was established.
Sunday 4 January 2015
ANZ traders investigated for possible manipulation of market benchmarks
The Australian Financial Review reported that seven traders, including a senior ANZ Group trader, were being investigated for possible manipulation of market benchmarks.
Wednesday 1 October 2014
NAB fined $10,200 for product disclosure statement
ASIC fined NAB $10,200 for potentially misleading statements in a product disclosure statement.
Wednesday 17 September 2014
ASICe fined NAB $40,800 over loan ads
ASIC fined NAB $40,800 for potentially misleading advertising in relation to a UBank home loan product.
Wednesday 17 September 2014
Westpac fined $20,400 for product disclosure statement
ASIC fined Westpac $20,400 for potentially misleading statements in a product disclosure statement.
Friday 12 September 2014
Macquarie agrees to $82.5m settlement in Storm class action
Macquarie Bank agreed to a $75m settlement in class action brought against it for involvement in Storm Financial.
Tuesday 20 May 2014
ASIC banned former Westpac trader for fictitious trading entities
ASIC banned a former Westpac trader for eight years after an investigation found he created a series of fictitious trading entries and had created a false document.
Thursday 30 January 2014
ANZ reviewed home loans after $70m refunds
The Sydney Morning Herald reported that ANZ was conducting a sweeping review of all of its home loan, savings and small business accounts to ensure they were operating correctly, after a major glitch forced it to refund $70m to 235,000 home loan customers.
Monday 23 December 2013
NAB gives enforceable undertaking over possible misconduct causing share price spike
ASIC accepted an enforceable undertaking from NAB to monitor and control market direct market access trading after possible misconduct by trading personnel contracted to bank resulted in a share price spike of the ASX 200.
Tuesday 17 December 2013
Two CBA companies review handling of client money
Two members of the CBA Group entered enforceable undertakings to review their handling of client money. The two companies completed a remediation program after identifying weaknesses including unauthorised withdrawals of client money from trust accounts and pooling of client money.
Saturday 10 November 2012
NAB settles sub prime mortgage securities class action for $115m
The Australian Financial Review reported that NAB would pay $115m to settle a class action with shareholders following poor disclosure of its investment in securities backed by subprime mortgages during the global financial crisis.
Friday 14 September 2012
CBA agreed to $136m for compensation over Storm Financial
CBA agreed to make $136m available in compensation for involvement in Storm Financial (the collapse of which hurt 14,000 investors). The $136m is in addition to payments of about $132m and other benefits CBA had already provided to Storm investors under its CBA resolution scheme.
Wednesday 5 September 2012
Macquarie bank report finds breaches of compliance standards
The Sydney Morning Herald reported a Macquarie Private Wealth internal report found more than 80% of the division's private client advisers were in breach of compliance standards.
Wednesday 7 March 2012
CBA accepts enforceable undertaking due to credit limit consent concerns
ASIC accepted an enforceable undertaking from CBA following concerns that a message sent to its internet banking customers was misleading. In December 2011, CBA requested that customers provide their consent to continue to receive credit limit increase invitations. ASIC believed the messages suggested if customers did not consent they would lose the chance to receive credit limit increase offers in future.
Thursday 31 March 2011
Former Macquarie fund manager jailed over insider trading
A former Macquarie fund manager was jailed for two and a half years after pleading guilty to making $1.4m from insider trading.
Wednesday 14 October 2009
CBA fined $100,000 over continuous disclosure obligations
CBA fined $100,000 for alleged failure to comply with continuous disclosure obligations under the Corporations Act.
Friday 6 March 2009
ANZ agrees to hundreds of millions of dollar settlement with Opes Prime investors
ANZ accepted an enforceable undertaking to remedy a poor compliance culture and paid hundreds of millions in settlement to Opes Prime investors.
When will they ever learn? When will we ever learn?FRANK AINSLIE 24TH APRIL 2018