Australia is not only large but exudes a great sense of uniqueness and diversity as well when it comes to the financial system. The banks in Australia not only offer traditional banking services but also go the extra mile to provide business banking, trading in financial markets, stockbroking, insurance, and funds management. As of January 2020, there are 53 Australian banks, 14 of which are owned by the government.
- Commonwealth Bank
- ANZ Banking Group
- National Australian Bank (NAB)
- Macquarie Group
- Bendigo and Adelaide Bank
- Suncorp Bank
- Bank of Queensland
- ING Bank (Australia) Limited
- HSBC Bank Australia
1. Commonwealth Bank
This is the largest bank in terms of assets, deposits, market capitalization, and a number of branches and ATMs, headquartered in Darling Harbour, Sydney, New South Wales. It has world-class 49,000 employees handling different activities that include taking deposits, insurance, and investment banking to more than 16 million retail customers, business as well as institutional customers.
It has been documented that by end of the year 2019 the bank had assets totaling a$980 billion, deposits were approximated at A$642 billion and the loans were at A$773 billion. The bank’s shares are traded on the Australian Securities Exchange with a market capitalization of US$107 billion.
2. ANZ Banking Group
The Australia & New Zealand banking group is based in Melbourne and it happens to be the second-largest bank in Australia in terms of assets with its 1,000 branches under the able hands of 39,000 employees.
The bank has intensified its operations internationally to more than 30 markets in Asia, Europe, and North America.
At the end of 2019, the bank had assets totaling A$914.8 billion, deposits were approximated at A$524 billion while the share equity was approximated at A$53 billion. According to the Mozo Experts Choice Awards 2019, ANZ was ranked as the best major bank in Australia.
This is the third-largest company in Australia with assets worth A$907 billion. The position is courtesy of offering a comprehensive range of financial products and services to individuals, businesses as well as corporate customers. Established in 1817, with headquarters in Sydney, it provides banking products and financial services through five divisions.
The divisions include Consumer Bank, Business Bank, BT Financial Group, Westpac Institutional Bank, and Westpac New Zealand. The bank has employed around 32,620 employees providing various services to 13 million customers.
Westpac has its head office in Sydney. When this bank was initially established, it was named the Bank of New South Wales. In 1982, this name was changed to Westpac after the bank purchased the Commercial Bank of Australia. Since then, this financial institution has been among the top 5 banks in the country. It also has over 35,000 workers and provides services to more than 10 million clients. Apart from Australia, Westpac also has a presence in New Zealand and other Oceanic countries.
Despite all the success, Westpac has had some controversies. The bank was involved in interest manipulation, which prompted the Australian government to find it. It has also been involved in some misconduct.
4. National Australian Bank (NAB)
Established in 1982, NAB is the fourth largest bank in Australia with A$847.6 billion in total assets and A$466 billion in deposits at the end of 2019.
Fundamentally the bank offers savings accounts, visa debit cards, low-rate credit cards, personal loans, mortgages, business loans, insurance, investments, private banking, retirement and wealth planning, asset management, travel and overseas banking, mobile and online banking, foreign exchange, and wire transfers. With an employee base of 34, 400 people, the bank has headquarters in Melbourne, Victoria.
Like many banks, the National Australian Bank has its areas of specialty. This bank is known for providing a wide range of financial services and products for wholesale and retail clients of different sizes.
5. Macquarie Group
Established in 1969 as an investment bank, it offers the following; asset management, banking and financial services, commodities and global markets, and Macquarie capital. It also offers services of taking deposits, loans of many types, private banking, advisory services, and internet banking.
It is the largest Australian asset manager with an AUM of $562 billion. The bank’s total assets were approximated at A$220 billion by the end of the year 2019.
Macquarie Group operates out of Sydney. It employs over 15,000 workers. In addition, this bank is ranked as the world leading infrastructure asset management enterprise. Within Australia, it serves as a top adviser in acquisitions and mergers. Apart from asset management, Macquarie Group provides personal and business clients services, which include market access, wealth management, asset financing, leasing, renewables research and development, and specialist advisory.
6. Bendigo and Adelaide Bank
It is the sixth-largest bank in Australia, with its headquarters in Bendigo, Victoria, Australia. Bendigo and Adelaide Bank’s products and services include personal and commercial insurance, business banking, investment, and loan products.
Currently, Bendigo and Adelaide Bank has over 400 branches, after it acquired 25 more branches when it merged with Adelaide Bank. In June 2021, it announced a statutory net profit of A$524.0 million, with customer deposits totaling A$78.0 billion.
With over 7,000 employees serving over 1.9 million customers, and a market capitalization of A$3.3 billion, Bendigo and Adelaide Bank has established itself as a leader in the home loans banking sector.
7. Suncorp Bank
Suncorp Bank is the 7th largest Australian bank that offers banking services in Banking, Home and Motor Insurance, Life Insurance, and Superannuation. It opened its doors in 1902, as an agricultural bank, and later merged with Metway Bank.
Currently, Suncorp Bank operates 423 branches, of which 157 came from its acquisition of Promina. It employs over 13,000 workers in Australia and New Zealand and operates 389 retail and business banking branches.
As of June 30, 2021, Suncorp Bank’s assets totaled A$72.77 billion, with a net tax profit of A$1,033 million. Its total deposits stood at A$28.58 billion, while the lending to investors was at A$12.06 billion.
8. Bank of Queensland
The Bank of Queensland was founded in 1863, and is the eighth largest bank in Australia. It has 252 branches, and 3,055 ATMs. In 2021, it received a customer satisfaction rating of 82.9%, from Roy Morgan Research.
As of February 2021, the Bank of Queensland had assets totaling A$57.637 billion, a market capitalization of A$5.7 billion, and A$34.685 billion in customer deposits. In the first half of 2021, it announced a dividend of 17c, after recording A$154 million in profits.
Bank of Queensland employs over 2,098 workers and offers its financial services from its five divisions. Those divisions are Retail Banking, BOQ Specialist, BOQ Finance, St Andrew’s Insurance, Virgin Money Australia, and Me Bank as of July 2021.
9. ING Bank (Australia) Limited
ING Bank (Australia)is a subsidiary of the multinational Dutch bank that offers banking services such as personal banking, insurance, loans, and other banking-related financial services. It was founded in 1999 and it operates as a foreign subsidiary company.
In 2020, it had over A$46.575 billion in customer deposits, and assets totaling over A$73.045 billion. It employs over 1,380 workers throughout Australia. While it doesn’t have branches of its own, it has grown to become the largest lender, after the Big Four banks.
ING Bank (Australia) has several arms and branches through which it operates. Through these entities, it offers these services, which include, savings, mortgage, insurance, wholesale banking, lending, and other conventional banking functions. Although it started small, ING Bank (Australia) is now considered one of the top mortgage service providers in the country. It has a lending portfolio that exceeds $60 billion whiles its deposits are a little below $50 billion. Also, this bank has a substantial retirement account portfolio with over 30,000 active accounts.
In addition, this financial institution has decent customer satisfaction and high recommendation ratings. For this reason, many clients are willing to recommend this bank to others. As a result, ING Bank (Australia) sees a steady rise in customers.
10. HSBC Bank Australia
HSBC Bank Australia is the 10th largest bank in Australia. It offers a range of banking and financial services that include retail, private, trade, financial, and treasury banking. The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited was incorporated as a foreign-owned bank in 2007.
Its other services include cash management, securities custody, and asset management, among other related financial services. HSBC Bank offers these services online and through a network of 45 branches and offices. In August 2021, it generated A$925.07 million in revenues, and it currently employs over 1,945 workers.
Initially, in 1964, HSBC Bank Australia operated as Hongkong Finance. In 1986, this bank got its banking license. It has its headquarters in Sydney and it primarily offers services to institutional, corporate, and commercial sectors. It has thousands of ATM outlets and offers internet banking services. In addition, clients that operate with this bank easily conduct foreign transactions in any of the countries where HSBC has a presence.
Safest Bank in Australia
The most essential thing customers look out for when selecting a bank is the safety of their money. Similarly, people in Australia look to the Commonwealth Bank of Australia if they are concerned about safety. As one of the largest banks in Australia, this financial institution has a reputation for being strong and financially stable. Over the years, it consistently has a high credit score rating from agencies responsible for rating financial institutions. Therefore, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia can be considered the safest bank in the country because of its excellent risk management practices.
Most Popular Bank in Australia
There are several well-known banks in Australia. However, the most popular bank in the country is the Commonwealth Bank of Australia. This financial institution takes this position due to its high customer satisfaction ratings and the size of its market share. In addition, this bank currently has the greatest number of customers in Australia. It achieves this by constantly providing new and innovative services and products to its clients. Furthermore, this bank is leading in the provision of digital banking services, which include online and mobile banking. Therefore, its customers all around the country can easily perform transactions with just a click. In addition, this bank has received several awards, which highlight its commitment to enhancing the experience of its clients.
Best Bank in Australia
Although there are several top financial institutions in Australia, only a few can be considered the best. In particular, one Australian bank stands out among others. The Commonwealth Bank of Australia is seen by most financial experts as the best. Most financial experts and individuals see this bank as the best due to three factors, which are financial performance, innovation, and client satisfaction ratings. In addition, this bank offers its clients access to comprehensive services and products for retail and business banking. Likewise, the bank has invested millions of dollars into the provision of the latest digital tools that support mobile and online banking for its customers.
Bank Ranking in Australia
The way banks are ranked in Australia depends on several factors. The agencies responsible for assessing financial institutions consider market share, customer satisfaction, equity, and credit facility capacity. In the last few years, 4 banks have ranked top consistently. In no particular order, these banks are:
- National Australia Bank;
- Westpac Banking Corporation;
- Australia and New Zealand Banking Group;
- Commonwealth Bank of Australia.
Considered the big 4, these financial institutions always show up in the top 5 banks of Australia. Besides these banks, Bendigo Bank, ING, and Macquarie Bank are other banks that show up high on the rankings of evaluators.
Best Banks for Business Accounts in Australia
In general, all the banks in Australia offer decent personal banking services to clients. However, there are a handful of banks that specialize in providing products and services suitable for businesses. As expected, the big 4 banks are known for offering outstanding banking services for businesses and institutions. Examples of services and products offered by these banks include overdrafts, loans, and different capacities of credit cards. As for corporate clients that require advisory services, these banks have experts that can help businesses manage their finances. In addition, an enterprise can leverage the pull of these banks to finance projects and attract investors.
Besides the top 4 banks, other financial institutions offer tailor-made services to small to medium-sized businesses. Some of these financial institutions include Beyond Bank, Suncorp Bank, and Bank of Queensland. Most of their clients depend on them for asset financing, merchant services, and management of transaction accounts.