Banks are losing ground in satisfaction with business customers, and smaller lenders are not exempt.
The Roy Morgan Research Business Banking Satisfaction Report has found that satisfaction among business customers of the major banks fell by 0.6% in May to 63.5%. But smaller banks were not immune from the satisfaction slide, falling 1% to 65.5%.
ANZ saw the biggest drop in satisfaction, falling 2.4% to 61.5%. The bank is down 3.5% for the year in business satisfaction. NAB saw an uptick, with satisfaction improving 3% to 64.7%. Westpac leads the major banks in businesss satisfaction at 66.8%, followed by NAB, then CBA at 61.6%.
Roy Morgan Research communications director Norman Morris said the major area of contention for business banking customers was business lending.
"The major problem area for all the big banks remains the very low satisfaction levels their business customers have regarding their loans. Satisfaction with loans among the big four customers is now only 58.6% but it will be interesting to see if this improves with declines in the official cash rate seen in May and June, the impact of which will depend on what is passed on," he said.
Business customers continue to prove more difficult to please than personal banking customers, with satisfaction around 14% lower. Morris said the fall in business satisfaction would likely impact the rating given to banks by consumers as well.
"It would appear that the banks are doing a relatively poor job of meeting the more complex and potentially riskier needs of their business customers and they continue to get low ratings on issues such as 'following developments in your business' and 'maintaining regular contact with you'. With a slowing of household and business credit growth there will be a temptation to reduce contact with customers even more but this is only likely to compound the problem of low satisfaction and customer retention," he said.
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