Finance journalist Michael Pascoe has launched a scathing attack on the ACCC for not promoting competition in the mortgage market.
In a comment piece published in the Sydney Morning Herald yesterday, Pascoe asked where the ACCC was when Challenger Mortgage Management was sold off to NAB.
“It lessens competition to lose a significant non-ADI (authorised deposit taking institutions) player, but in the real world it was already gone with the death of the securitisation market,” Mr Pascoe wrote.
As for small lenders including ‘regional’ banks, Mr Pascoe said they remain dependent on a government guarantee that the big four are keen to be rid of.
“Without a competitive source of funds, Bank of Queensland, Bendigo and Adelaide and whatever's left of Suncorp can't provide meaningful competition with the big four anyway.
“Thus competition in the residential mortgage sector really is limited to four institutions. Oh well, that's more than most major Australian industries can claim,” he wrote.