A regional lender has claimed it is fighting with "one hand tied behind our back" as regulation favours bigger players.
Bendigo and Adelaide Bank managing director Mike Hirst has argued that regulation favours major lenders, and has asked the government to review big bank dominance as part of its inquiry into financial services, Fairfax has reported.
Hirst took aim at the previous government's guarantee on bank borrowing, which he said saw smaller lenders with a lower credit rating pay a higher fee. According to Fairfax, Hirst said the decision had a "major impact" on customer choice.
"What we don't have ... is an even playing field that promotes customer choice. Size is a powerful ally in any endeavour. In banking in Australia it provides larger players with funding and regulatory advantages that ultimately restrict consumer choice. That needs to be put under a microscope."
While Hirst said some government regulation of the financial system was overdue, he called aspects of regulatory change "a solution looking for a problem".