Monthly Archives: March 2018

Commonwealth Bank of Australia loses out to having royal commission secrets kept from public

The CBA has lost its attempt to have its secret, commercially sensitive information kept from the public in its evidence given to the banking royal commission.

CBA had asked for a ream of information included in the statement provided by its executive general manager, retail products, Clive Richard van Hore, to the royal commission not to be published.

Commonwealth Bank has lost its bid to have its secrets not published by the royal commission.

The information included the bank’s correspondence with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, internal documents, and details of its remediation scheme.

The application related to the evidence presented regarding the bank’s credit card-plus product.

It is understood other major banks were planning to ask for similar non-disclosures or had already asked ahead of the decision made by Commissioner Kenneth Hayne.

“Apart from the one case where a particular customer’s name and policy number
would otherwise have been revealed, none of the particular information in respect of
which CBA sought directions was shown to be of a kind that should not be published,” Commissioner Hayne said.

“CBA identified no damage to itself or any other person that would follow from
publication of the material. Subject to the direction described above, the application
is otherwise refused.”

Commissioner Hayne said he encouraged the approach of the CBA to make such a request while the statement was still in draft form.

A spokesman for the bank said it appreciated the decision from the royal commission.

The royal commission will have its first round of hearings from March 13. The first fortnight will look at case studies about areas including home loans, car loans, credit cards, add-on insurance, credit offers and account admin.

Henry Sapiecha