Banking satisfaction 'at its highest point since records began'

The number of Aussies who are happy with the services provided by their bank has reached record levels.

According to a new survey by Roy Morgan Research, 80 per cent of people felt they were getting the most from their bank accounts in October.

This is the best result since the firm started the satisfaction poll back in 1996 and is a clear indication that lenders are going the extra mile to please their customers.

Each of the nation's "big four" banks improved their rating during the month, with Westpac and ANZ seeing a 1.1 per cent rise in their score.

Meanwhile, an extra 0.6 per cent of Commonwealth Bank customers said they were content with the provider's financial services and National Australia Bank (NAB) saw an increase of 0.1 per cent.

This was enough to keep NAB at the top of the pile as far as the big four are concerned, but the rest are now catching up.

It has been a good month for Australian companies so far, as the International Monetary Fund revealed last week that the nation's banking sector is in decent shape.

Overall, 78 per cent of customers who hold accounts with the country's major banks said they were content.

Although this is impressive, the big four still have plenty of ground to make up on smaller, less established lenders.

Indeed, credit unions posted a satisfaction score of 89.4 per cent during the month, while building societies were even more popular with a rating of 90.1 per cent.

However, mutual banks were still out in front, with a remarkable 91.4 per cent of customers declaring their happiness with the services provided by such organisations.

Industry communications director at Roy Morgan Research Norman Morris believes there are a number of factors behind the record-breaking results.

"There is now much greater flexibility in channel selection, with internet banking being used by more people than visit branches and as a result customers can do their banking when and where they want to," he commented.

"Another contributing factor to improvements in satisfaction over this period has been the increased focus on customer service by all banks and the competition that this has generated."

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