Bank of Queensland says it will be some time before any fall in the Australian dollar benefits its business.
Bank of Queensland (BoQ) says it will be at least another year before it sees any benefits from a lower Australian dollar.
While BoQ returned to profit in the year to August, after becoming the first Australian bank in two decades to incur a loss, it is taking a cautious approach to the year ahead.
“We think it’s probably into 2015, late ’14/15 – if the exchange rate goes down, we’ll start to see the benefit of those flows,” chief executive Stuart Grimshaw told reporters after BoQ’s annual general meeting in Brisbane.
The bank is heavily exposed to the tourism industry sensitive Queensland economy, which in turn is influenced by movements in the exchange rate.
During the meeting, chairman Roger Davis highlighted the concerns the bank holds about the economy.
“While we are pleased with the 2013 result, we also recognise the challenges the year ahead will bring with slowing economic growth, continued margin pressure especially from the asset side of the balance sheet, rising regulatory imposts, continued weakness in the non-mining sectors of the economy, frustratingly high foreign exchange levels and, of course, continued global growth concerns,” he said.
Meanwhile, the bank said it will team with other smaller lenders to lobby the federal government for changes in the banking sector, which is dominated by the big four players.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott has appointed former Commonwealth Bank of Australia boss David Murray to head a “root and branch” review of the financial system.
BoQ plans to lobby for capital guarantee lending requirements to be relaxed for smaller banks, and will discuss submission ideas with the likes of Bendigo and Adelaide Bank.
“What we’ll be pushing … will be the removal of some of these inequities that prevent regional banks from competing on a more equal footing,” Mr Grimshaw told shareholders.
“There’s a lot of similarities across all the regional banks which makes sense to get together.
“It’s probably easier for them to hear one voice rather than three.”