Australian banks look set to publicly report on how much their customers trust them, a move designed to give greater transparency to the industry’s bid to repair its battered reputation.
Former auditor-general Ian McPhee, who has overseen the banks’ attempt to address a “trust deficit”, will on Tuesday call for individual banks to publicly report on the extent to which they have managed to rebuild public trust and confidence in the industry.
Mr McPhee was appointed by the banking industry in 2016 to report on banks’ efforts to carry out a wide-ranging reform package, and in his final report, which will be published on Tuesday, he says it is now up to chief executives and senior managers to “embed” the reforms.
The report’s sole recommendation is for the Australian Bankers’ Association to introduce a policy for individual banks to publish “appropriate performance indicators” on whether they are achieving their goals of rebuilding public trust in banks.
The ABA, which commissioned Mr McPhee, accepted this recommendation.
Industry-wide figures published earlier this year showed only one in three people trust the banking industry, but Mr McPhee is calling for reporting of similar metrics for individual banks.
One of the key areas where banks are yet to complete their reform program is in remuneration, which was the subject of a review by another former top public servant, Stephen Sedgwick.
“Banks will be making further public reports on the success of the program and their ongoing implementation of the Sedgwick recommendations and the new banking code,” Australian Bankers’ Association chief executive Anna Bligh said.