Banks’ dirt files opened

Kalgoorlie Miner - - BUSINESS - Jeff Whalley

Con­fi­den­tial doc­u­ments re­leased by the royal com­mis­sion into bank­ing blow the lid on a decade of drug and drunk em­ploy­ees, sex­ual harass­ment and fraud­u­lent be­hav­iour at some of our big­gest len­ders.

The 10 years of bad deeds were in­cluded in a dump of 215 sub­mis­sions by the na­tion’s big­gest fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tions to the year-long Royal Com­mis­sion into Mis­con­duct in the Bank­ing, Su­per­an­nu­a­tion and Fi­nan­cial Ser­vices In­dus­try.

The se­cret sub­mis­sions were made in Jan­uary and trig­gered many of the com­mis­sion’s fur­ther in­ves­ti­ga­tions. Rev­e­la­tions in­clude the Com­mon­wealth Bank de­tail­ing sev­eral sex­ual harass­ment cases, and a staff mem­ber of­ten re­turn­ing “to the of­fice vis­i­bly in­tox­i­cated”. ANZ said some staff looked up the per­sonal fi­nan­cial de­tails of peo­ple they knew in 35 in­stances. In an­other case, an em­ployee was sacked af­ter fal­si­fy­ing more than 100 loan ap­pli­ca­tions.

Na­tional Aus­tralia Bank ac­knowl­edged prob­lems with its debt col­lec­tion prac­tices, in­clud­ing send­ing let­ters to cus­tomers un­der the names “Fairhalsen Col­lec­tions” and “Bruns­wick Col­lec­tion Ser­vices”, cre­at­ing the im­pres­sion the debt had been on-sold.

Air­ing the list of wrong­do­ing sets the scene for royal com­mis­sion chief Ken­neth Hayne and his lawyers to turn the blow­torch on to the bank bosses, at the next round of pub­lic hear­ings start­ing on Novem­ber 19.

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