Bill English wants customers to "take banks to task" a nice attention grabbing headline and politically expedient but as I have found, my bank just isn't listening.
I mused a few months back as to why banks were not participating in the current recession, coming to the party and giving New Zealanders a break, considering taxpayers are now guaranteeing their own banks.
Lets face it, gone are the days when your bank manager knew your name and cared about the service they gave you and it seems even when it counts the most, in dire economic circumstances not seen for 70 years, they simply bury their heads in your money.
My bank's approach to the recession and what effect it might be having on me is to sack its staff, to make we wait longer in a line of other disgruntled sheep, falsely ask me at the counter what will I be doing in the weekend, ask if I want to buy insurance and then continue to punish me 25 bucks a time if I forget to have sufficient funds in my account when an auto payment is due. Its kinda like Robin Hood with a smile, except the taxpayer is paying for the arrows.
Short of forcing banks to play their part, and we don't want that, it seems the only pressure that might work is pressure from every bank customer on their bank manager.
The likelihood of that happening from the average passive Kiwi consumer is less than Lynda Carter coming back and playing the lead role in the new Wonder Woman movie.
It is worth a try though.
*Cartoon from Emmerson
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