Report on Bank Mergers

Report on Bank Mergers

17 September 2009

© Commonwealth of Australia 2009
ISBN 978-1-74229-148-2

View the report as a single document - (PDF 1005KB)

View the report as separate downloadable parts:

Membership of Committee (PDF 10KB)
Chapter 1 - Introduction (PDF 10KB)

Referral of the Inquiry
Conduct of the inquiry
Outline of the report

Chapter 2 - Background - the Australian banking market (PDF 104KB)

A history of strong banks in Australia
Concentration in the Australian banking market

Chapter 3 - The economics of bank mergers (PDF 97KB)

Economies of scale in banking
Economies of scope
Concentration, contestability and interest margins

Chapter 4 - Recent Australian bank mergers (PDF 156KB)

The Westpac takeover of St George Bank
The Commonwealth Bank takeover of BankWest
Branding strategies
Possible further mergers
Impact on consumer choice
Impact of mergers on system stability
Impact on interest margins
The global financial crisis and bank mergers

Chapter 5 - Regulation of Australian bank mergers (PDF 173KB)

ACCC approval of mergers
The 'four pillars' policy
Approval by the Treasurer for other bank takeovers
The role of the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA)

Chapter 6 - Employment and 'offshoring' (PDF 86KB)

Employment in banking
Employment impact of mergers
'Offshoring' of jobs by banks
The extent of offshoring
The impact of offshoring
Policy responses to offshoring

Labor Senators' Dissenting Report (PDF 87KB)

Competition in the Banking Sector
Member owned financial institutions
Increased transparency of the ACCC
ACCC, APRA and the Reserve Bank – Joint Annual Report
Monitoring and enforcing conditions
Employment and offshoring

Minority Report by Senator Xenophon (PDF 98KB)

The economic, social and employment impacts of the recent mergers
The measures available to enforce conditions on future bank mergers
The capacity for the ACCC to enforce divestiture in the banking sector
Consumer choice and competition

Bibliography (PDF 53KB)
Appendix 1 - Submissions Received (PDF 9KB)
Appendix 2 - Public Hearings and Witnesses (PDF 10KB)

Canberra, Thursday 12 March 2009
Canberra, Friday 13 March 2009
Brisbane, Wednesday 1 July 2009
Perth, Thursday 2 July 2009
Canberra, Monday 10 August 2009

For further information, contact:

Committee Secretary
Senate Standing Committees on Economics
PO Box 6100
Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600

Phone: +61 2 6277 3540
Fax: +61 2 6277 5719