Faith in banking industry at three-year low

Index demonstrates low confidence in corporate ethics, with banking scoring lowest

Faith in banking industry at three-year low



Public trust in the ethics of Australian corporations continues to decline however, trust in the banking, finance and insurance sector is at its lowest point in three years.

The Government Institute of Australia’s latest annual Ethics Index, published with Ipsos, showed overall public perception across all industries was down six points. Noting the public’s especially “poor perception” of ethics in banking, finance and insurance, this category placed lowest of all sectors for the third consecutive year, but this year scored a new low of -15.

Some 55% of respondents consider the sector unethical compared to only 28% who claim to view it as ethical. Among their concerns were issues surrounding poor corporate culture and poor corporate governance.

The results come amidst heightened scrutiny arising from the royal commission.

A statement from the GIA said, “Continuing scandals and revelations from the Hayne royal commission are further eroding Australians’ trust in the ethical behaviour of companies and undermining confidence in the banking, superannuation and financial services industry.”

During the latest round of public hearings that concluded on 17 August, the commission heard allegations surrounding “fees for no service” scandal that rocked several major financial firms. A 2016 report by ASIC revealed that some of Australia’s major financial companies failed to deliver ongoing advice to clients who were charged fees for those services.

The results in the index were sourced from Ipsos research conducted between 25 May and 7 June this year, which questioned 1,000 Australians located across the country.



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