Spotlight on regional bank closures

February 22, 2024 11:50 am in by
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A Senate Inquiry into regional bank closures over the last decade was conducted in South Australia yesterday, 21 February.

The state has been labelled a ‘banking desert’, with many towns going without, and some with only one branch remaining.

National Leader David Littleproud has expressed disappointment, telling SKY he believes banks have a moral responsibility to ensure they continue providing services in the regions.

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“Those communities are providing millions of dollars of profit to that bank, and what they’re trying to do is simply cut down costs as quickly as they can, and trying to say that they’re losing money on the branch,” Mr Littleproud says.

Around 800 banks have shut-up-shop since 2017 alone.

“Commonwealth Bank has now put a pause on anymore regional branch closures until 2026, but what they need to demonstrate to those communities is: ‘What does a viable branch look like, what is the patronage that they require for a branch to continue to be viable?'”

Since 1975, South Australia has lost the greatest percentage of regional banks of any state in the country.