Treasurer Josh Frydenberg met with chief executives of the country’s biggest banks on Wednesday to discuss the economic impact of the coronavirus as lenders pledge to support customers thrown into financial strife by the crisis. As the government prepares to announce its stimulus package, Mr Frydenberg attended a Sydney meeting with top bankers chaired by Commonwealth Bank chief executive Matt Comyn, who is also chairman of the Australian Banking Association (ABA).
Also attending the meeting in person or via the phone were National Australia Bank chief Ross McEwan, Westpac acting chief executive Peter King, ANZ Bank chief Shayne Elliott and various leaders of regional and second-tier banks.
CBA became the latest bank to say it would allow consumers and business customers affected by the coronavirus to delay their loan repayments and avoid some fees, as it also pledged to pay its suppliers more quickly in response to the crisis.
For small businesses, CBA said it would take action that could include deferring loan payments for up to 90 days for affected clients, waiving merchant fees, and waiving fees for borrowers using “redraw” facilities on their loans.