Reserve Bank’s survey on bank fees

The Reserve Bank conducts an annual survey on bank fees. The results of the latest survey suggest that banks’ fee income from both households as well as businesses rose moderately in 2014, mainly as a result of balance sheet growth, rather than increases in fees on loans or deposits.

Domestic banking fee income grew by 2.8%, to around $12 billion in 2014. This reflects moderate rise in fees paid by both households and businesses, largely driven by volume growth rather than increases in unit fees.

Banks’ fee income from households grew by 1.5% in 2014, the second consecutive year of positive growth after earlier notable declines. Higher fee income reflected growth in credit card and personal lending fees, whereas fee income from housing lending and deposit accounts declined.

The survey also showed that growth in fee income from credit cards was largely volume driven, relating to an increased number of cards on issue, as well as a higher frequency of foreign exchange conversion fees being incurred by customers. Total fee income from businesses increased by 3.5% in 2014.

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