The Reserve Bank has lifted the official interest rate seven times so far this year, with borrowers facing increased pressure from mortgage repayments and the rising cost of living, but that hasn’t stopped the major lenders from posting billion-dollar profits.
The Big Four banks - Commonwealth Bank (CBA), Westpac, ANZ and NAB - are all publicly listed companies, meaning they need to report their annual earnings. And they have reported some major profits.
CBA reported a net profit after tax of $9.6 billion, ANZ reported a profit of $7.1 billion, Westpac saw a net profit of $5.6 billion and NAB reported a net profit of $6.8 billion.
Each of the major banks’ CEOs spoke of the pain everyday Aussies were feeling as a result of high inflation - even though they were making a motza.
NAB CEO Ross McEwan said customers were feeling “challenged” by higher interest rates and inflation - but in the bank’s ASX announcement to shareholders, McEwan said the bank’s strong performance was due to the “benefits from a rising interest rate environment”.
Westpac CEO Peter King boasted that the bank “returned to growth” in key segments of Australian mortgages, while also saying it was “inevitable” that households would feel the pain.
“However, it is inevitable that the impact of higher rates will be felt,” King said.
@Westpac 5.3 billion profit. The only way you make that much profit is by RIPPING PEOPLE OFF !! And we still have to queue at your banks... total f#$king joke !!!
— Visual Candy (@Visualcandy_) November 7, 2022
CBA CEO Matt Comyn said he was “conscious” customers were “feeling very concerned” about rising inflation and rising interest rates, while simultaneously reporting a massive 11 per cent profit jump from last year.
ANZ CEO Shayne Elliott said the bank delivered a “strong financial result” and was “restoring momentum in Australian home loans”.
Elliott then went on to speak about the “significant uncertainty” facing many people and admitted households would continue to struggle.
“Cost-of-living pressures are starting to have a meaningful impact and the next six months will be testing,” Elliott said.