ANZ’s NZ chief executive has left the bank after an internal review raised concern among board members over his personal expenses.
ANZ on Monday said David Hisco had accepted that “characterisation of the expenses falls short of the standards required” and had been replaced as ANZ NZ CEO on an interim basis by Antonia Watson.
Mr Hisco rejected some of the board’s concerns but has accepted accountability and forfeited all unvested equity rewards.
“We are disappointed David is leaving ANZ under such circumstances after such a long career, however his departure is the right one in these circumstances given the expectations we have of all our people, no matter how senior or junior,” ANZ NZ chair Sir John Key said.
ANZ did not give detail about the personal expenses but news media in Australian and New Zealand media widely reported Mr Hisco billed ANZ for thousands of dollars’ worth of chauffeured car trips.
ANZ said Mr Hisco, who has been with the bank for more than 20 years, has also experienced ongoing health issues.
Previously boss of ANZ’s retail and commercial banking units, Mr Hisco earned $3.5 million in the last full financial year.
Mr Hisco’s exit follows a challenging period for ANZ’s NZ unit, which he had led for nine years.
The Reserve Bank of New Zealand last month stripped ANZ NZ of its right to self-monitor its capital buffers due to concerns the central bank said it had been raising without effect for five years.
ANZ’s ASX-listed shares dipped slightly at the open and, although they recovered to sit flat at $28.22 by 1012 AEST, were the worst performing among the big four banks in early trade.