AUSTRALIA'S big banks are the world's most concentrated in terms of ownership and most profitable per capita, pocketing $1460 for every person in the country, a new report has revealed.
The Australian Institute study shows more than 50 per cent of the owners of the big four - ANZ, Commonwealth Bank, National Australia Bank and Westpac - are held by the same nominee companies.
The report also takes aim at a key pillar of the banking sector's defence that its strong profits are good for the overall economy as vast swathes of the $25 billion in profits is returned to Australians via the banks' wide shareholder register and the superannuation system.
The report claims that only a tenth of the banks' super profits find their way back into the nation's superannuation accounts.
Australian Institute banking analyst David Richardson warns the concentrated ownership of the banks may have "adverse consequences for consumers" as it opens the door for the banks to act in a monopolistic fashion.
Read more at News.com.au
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