Warren Truss.
Warren Truss.

Bananacoast-Truss tiff continues

THE war of words between Bananacoast Credit Union and Federal Nationals leader Warren Truss continues, with a spokesman for Mr Truss accepting the institution's increasingly terse insistence it passed on both interest rate cuts at the end of 2011, but saying it failed to do so quickly enough to be picked up in official reporting.

Changes in interest rate data are compiled monthly by an organisation called Canstar, which then provides figures for a range of uses, including for the National Farmers' Federation's Agribusiness Loan Monitor.

However, Bananacoast's move to pass on the November rate cut to farmers came too late to be picked up by Canstar.

"Canstar … has advised today that, at the time of their survey report on 14 November 2011, Bananacoast Community Credit Union had not passed on the rate cut announced by the Reserve Bank of Australia on 6 November 2011," Mr Truss's spokesman said.

"Canstar is very explicit about its timelines for financial institutions to report.

"This exposes the lack of transparency in the banking and non-bank financial lending sector highlighted in Mr Truss's media release and which makes it virtually impossible for customers to keep abreast of, and compare, loan rates and products.

"While the Bananacoast Community Credit Union says that it eventually passed on the full rate cut to its customers, failing to provide Canstar with timely information for its regular survey remains a public transparency concern. It also denied Bananacoast Community Credit Union the credit they deserve for the full rate cut, when so many in the sector did not.

"These anomalies can be resolved in future with full disclosure to Canstar in a timely and cooperative manner. It would certainly make matters clearer for customers who, after all, are looking for timely information about the rates being offered for their loan products."

Bananacoast chief executive Lyndon Kingston has been invited to respond.



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