ANZ to launch digital home loans

Full-year results show loan turnaround times 'back to normal'

ANZ to launch digital home loans


By Jayden Fennell

ANZ says it has restored momentum in Australian home loans with the bank’s application approval times back in line with its peers.

The major bank, which has just released its 2022 full-year results, has also announced it will be piloting a digital home loan with staff in coming weeks. The plan is to introduce a fully automated digital home loan, initially focused on the refinance market, later in 2023.

ANZ results show a statutory profit after tax for the full year ended September 30, 2022, of  $7.119bn, up 16% on the previous year.

Its cash profit from continuing operations was $6.515bn, up 5% when compared with the prior year. ANZ’s common equity tier one ratio was strong at 12.3% and cash return on equity was 10.4%. The proposed final dividend is 74c per share, fully franked.

ANZ CEO Shayne Elliott (pictured above) said this was a strong financial result with all divisions making a material contribution and demonstrating the benefits of a diversified portfolio.

“We restored momentum in Australian home loans with application approval times back in line with industry peers. We continued the re-platforming of Australia Retail onto ANZ Plus, our new digital bank, with deposits already exceeding $1.2 billion and growing at a rate faster than any new digital bank in Australia,” Elliott said.

“In New Zealand, we maintained an industry-leading position across our key segments while also reaching the final stages of the BS11. This was one of the largest compliance programs implemented in New Zealand banking history with the business now well positioned to focus on the future and further build the franchise.”

Elliott said given the progress ANZ had made in strengthening its core business, it was able to agree to the acquisition of Suncorp Bank which would provide an important platform for growth, particularly in the fast-growing and rapidly diversifying Queensland economy.

“Suncorp Bank is a well-run business that will see more than one million new retail customers join ANZ, sharing in the benefits of a wider range of products and services. It also means the Suncorp Group can focus on its core mission of being the best insurance company in Australia and New Zealand,” he said.

“The acquisition, which is subject to government and regulatory approvals, will be partially funded by the successful $3.5 billion equity capital raising. This was the world’s largest equity raise this calendar year for an M&A transaction and was structured in a way to ensure all shareholders were treated equally.”

Elliott said a highlight for ANZ this financial year was the commencement of the ANZ Worldline partnership that would allow the bank to provide business customers with world-leading, point-of-sale and online payment technology.

“We continued the systematic de-risking of the bank, highlighted by the sale of our margin lending business to Bendigo & Adelaide bank and just last month we completed the formal separation of our wealth business to Insignia and Zurich,” he said.

“Combined with the exit of Financial Planning & Advice, as well as the associated remediation being at the very final stage, we are the only major bank in Australia to have removed the risks associated with wealth management for shareholders.”

Elliott said the world was in a period of significant uncertainty with central banks struggling to control inflation and geopolitical uncertainty, most notably the war in Ukraine, also continued to weigh heavily.

“Fortunately, RBA data show aggregate household balance sheets, net of liquid assets are the best they have been for 15 years. This is largely a result of customers taking cautious measures during COVID-19 and the effective response from all levels of Government in Australia and New Zealand,” he said.

“While this data suggests on average people are still doing well, cost-of-living pressures are starting to have a meaningful impact and the next six months will be testing. This is particularly an issue for first-time homeowners who are only starting to build up their equity as well as those with less stable employment. 

“There is uncertainty ahead, however we have the business in good shape to withstand volatility. We also have a highly engaged workforce with a high-performance culture and I’m confident in our ability to continue to deliver for customers and shareholders.”

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