You could be losing money if you use the big four banks of Australia to make international currency exchanges.
1 December 2015: New research from WorldFirst, a specialist in international money transfers, suggests Australians are paying more than double in fees. Businesses have been charged almost $5,000 in bank fees and inferior exchange rates by the big four banks.
The Big Four banks in Australia are National Australia Bank (NAB), Westpac Banking Group, Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) and Commonwealth Bank (CBA).
Exporter, importers and other businesses all make international money exchanges everyday. It is estimated that AUD$1 trillion in funds are transferred by Australian businesses each year.
Although a new entrant to the Australian market, WorldFirst has warned businesses to look out for excessive fees and poor exchange rates whilst challenging the four big banks.
WorldFirst managing director Andrew Porter said Australian businesses are being hit by bank fees and they need to do research since the currency exchange market in Australia is monopolised by the big four banks.
Bank fees for overseas transfers are as high as $32 – and the exchange rates they’re offering are just not competitive. It definitely pays to do your research,” said Porter.
The currency exchange market is so much more competitive internationally, but here in Australia, it’s monopolised by the major banks and businesses just aren’t aware there are choices available,” he added.
WorldFirst are currently running a marketing program that aims to educate Australian businesses about more efficient and better ways to make international currency transfers.
Australian businesses are looking for new ways to make international currency transfers as the Australian dollar depreciates.
Expectations of stronger international economies and negative adjustment in local commodity prices are leading to the depreciation of the Aussie dollar.
At the end of the day, currency exchange is not the ‘bread and butter’ of banks and they really haven’t needed to properly compete in this market,” said Porter.
WorldFirst is a currency specialist that has recently launched in Australia. It offers individuals and businesses competitive exchange rates, personalised service and fast transfers with international transfers.
They have offices in Australia, Hong Kong, United States, Singapore and England.