The big banks don’t realise how angry Australians are with them for hiking up mortgage rates, Prime Minister Scott Morrison says.
Commonwealth Bank and ANZ on Thursday followed Westpac’s lead in lifting rates, with both institutions blaming growing international borrowing costs.
“I think people would be disappointed with the banks in their response today,” Mr Morrison told reporters in Melbourne on Friday.
“It seems that the banks still have a bit to learn about how angry the Australian public are.”
His comments come after Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said it was up the banks to justify the move.
“Any financial institutional which makes these decisions needs to explain to its customers why,” he said on Thursday.
According to Labor, the federal government also has some explaining to do, with its recent dysfunction facilitating the rises.
Labor finance spokesman Jim Chalmers said the banks have also taken advantage of knowing Scott Morrison will “always side with them over people who work and struggle”.
But the prime minister said he’s not afraid to stand up to the institutions.
Reforms such as the government’s open banking regime – which will give banking customers better access to their data and information – will hand greater power to customers, he said.
“Business as usual for the big banks won’t be continuing,” Mr Morrison said on Friday.