Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ) has released its 2016 financial year results, with ANZ New Zealand down 9% in cash profit delivering NZ$1.53 billion.
The bank continued to grow lending and deposits, with lending up 5% and customer deposits up 8% while interest margins have contracted as a result of strong lending competition and customers leaning towards fixed rate mortgages.
ANZ New Zealand chief executive officer David Hisco said, “We had a solid year and while our net profit after tax wasn’t as strong as the 2015 financial year, the New Zealand business is performing well and reflects the performance of the economy.
Hisco said KiwiSaver funds under management are at a record high but that the slower rate of growth in deposits than for lending was a challenge for the economy.
“Many New Zealanders see housing, particularly in the current low interest rate environment and in cities like Auckland where there is high demand for accommodation, as the most profitable way to get a return on their money,” Hisco said.
“That’s why ANZ New Zealand supports the Reserve Bank’s tightened restrictions on investor residential lending.”
Hisco said banking in New Zealand was evolving faster than other countries as customers embrace digital technologies.
“We’ve recently reinforced our digital banking leadership in New Zealand with the introduction of Apple Pay and we expect it to have just as big an impact here as it did in Australia earlier in the year where we’ve picked up new customers.
“Our iPhone and Android mobile phone app GoMoney has this past year also become the most popular way Kiwis do their banking, surpassing branch, phone and internet usage. GoMoney is also one of New Zealand’s most popular apps.”