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Support for Australia's Small and Medium-sized Businesses

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Bankstown City Unity Bank has today responded to the Australian Government's Coronavirus SME Scheme with the following measures added to support Australian small and medium-sized businesses.

During the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic, we understand the distressing times for businesses. We are always here to support you and your business, and in consultation with the Australian Government, we are pleased to announce a stimulus package that can help put the wind back in your sails.

Read more: Support for Australia's Small and Medium-sized Businesses

 

Delivering Safe Banking Services to our Members and Staff

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For 50 years, the wellbeing of our Members and staff have always been our top priority. As we face unprecedented responses from the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak, our support and commitment to our Members and staff will not change. And as a mutual bank and a member of the Australian community, it is important we come together to support each other.

Read more: Delivering Safe Banking Services to our Members and Staff

 

Standing By You In Uncertain Times

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In these uncertain times, one thing is for certain, we’re here to support you. It’s what we have been doing for 50 years and will continue to do so through thick and thin. Today, we introduce additional measures to support individuals who are doing it tough and increasing our help to keep small businesses open so that they can keep their staff employed.

Relationship Rewards Program

The COVID-19 outbreak continues to rapidly change our way of living. To support Members who are increasing the use of their debit cards to make payments, we are increasing the number of free excess transactions by FOUR across all relationship tiers which will commence immediately for 6 months.

Relationship Tiers Current Free
Excess Transactions
Additional
Free
New Free Excess
Transactions
Members with a balance $10,000+ 13 4 17
Members with a balance less than $10,000 5 4 9
Retired Members 58 year or older
(who are registered with us)
12 4 16
All in One Loans 20 4 24
All in One Package Unlimited - Unlimited

You can avoid exceeding your excess transaction limit by doing one of these two simple alternative payment methods:

  1. Use one of our Mobile Pay Apps – Google Pay, Apple Pay or Samsung Pay. Just like how you use your Visa payWave debit card, you can use your smartphone for instant everyday transactions. It's easy to set up. Just download the app from your mobile app store and link your Visa debit card. Paying with your smartphone is secure and convenient. To find out more about our Mobile Pay apps, click here.

  2. Slot your Visa debit card into the EFTPOS machine and select 'Credit'. By choosing 'Credit,' your payments will be processed via the Visa network and will not be counted as an EFTPOS transaction.

Supporting Members with Deposits

We have increased our 12-month Term Deposit rate by 0.40% to 1.70% and our 6-month Term Deposit to 1.30% (for deposits between $50,000 and $300,000) in recognition that this low rate environment is hurting savers.

Supporting Businesses

We have reduced Commercial Loans rates by 0.20% and Overdrafts by 0.40%, effective from 1 April 2020. In addition, we are not charging any Monthly Service fees on any commercial loan for the next 6 months. These fee waivers will automatically be applied to all loans and are in addition to a range of measures below that are available to businesses facing difficulties.

Bankstown City Unity Bank's Financial Assistance Package

A reminder that we are providing a Financial Assistance Package to help Members who are impacted by the COVID-19 coronavirus. We are providing immediate relief on all types of home loans, personal or car loans, overdrafts or credit cards and all commercial loan repayments.

Defer you Loan Repayments
Should you need financial assistance at this time, you can defer your loan repayments for an initial three-month period with a further three months available if you require it. It is important to note that whilst payments are deferred, interest on your loan will continue to accrue and will effectively capitalise. This means that at the end of the support period, your required repayment amount will increase so that you repay the total balance over the remaining loan term (including interest and charges added to the balance during the support period).

It is important to remember that if you defer your repayments you will pay more interest than you otherwise would. If you can recommence payments sooner, or are able to make lower payments, then it is in your best interests to do so as soon as your financial situation improves.

Converting to Interest Only
Consider whether converting your loan to an interest only loan is more suitable. Members in need of assistance can convert their principal and interest repayment loan to an interest only loan for up to 12 months. However, because you are only paying the interest only portion of the loan, you are not reducing the loan balance, which means you will pay more interest over the life of the loan.

Reducing your Loan Repayments
Reducing your loan repayments by extending the term of your loan. Remember, because you are paying your loan over a longer term, you will pay additional interest. So please consider making the maximum repayment that you can afford.

Redraw Facility
Accessing any additional money, you may have available to redraw in your eligible loan. Simply use online banking to transfer funds from your eligible loan into your savings account.

How to Apply
If you wish to apply for financial relief, please complete our Financial Assistance application form and one of our friendly staff will contact you to assist.

Other Changes

We have made some other changes to savings and term deposit rates which can be found here. New rates for term deposits took effect on 26 March 2020 and savings rates are effective from 1 April 2020.

 

Savings Interest Rate Changes effective 1 April 2020

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We are increasing our 12-month Term Deposit rate to 1.70% and our 6-month Term Deposit to 1.30% across the board. 

We are reducing interest rates for our Savings accounts including the Bonus Saver Account (S7) interest rate decreased by 0.50% to 1.10% (inclusive of the base rate plus bonus rate).

For more details, please see below our latest interest rate schedules.

 

Tap and Pay limit increased to $200 to help reduce COVID-19 transmission

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In a bid to reduce the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), the Australian Payments Network has temporarily increased the contactless card payment limit from $100 to $200 to reduce the need for you to enter your PIN on EFTPOS machines.

The increased limit is pragmatic and an important response to a changing environment. Consumers are buying more when shopping for essentials, less often. The new $200 contactless limit will mean fewer people need to enter their PIN on the payment terminal.

The new limit of $200 is expected to be progressively introduced across certain cards and at certain retailers, with major supermarkets expected to be among the first. It is also expected to apply for a three-month period, and will be extended, if needed.

For more information on the extra measures that’s currently in place to support Members, please go to bcub.com.au/standing-by-you-in-uncertain-times.html

 

Chief Executive Transition Announcement

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Chief Executive Officer of Unity Bank, Mark Genovese, has announced that after 17 years of service he would be stepping down at the end of April. During his tenure, Mark has overseen the development of one of Australia’s most successful and innovative Member Owned Banks. 

Unity Bank’s Chair, Mick Doleman, said “Mark has led our organisation with great passion and a genuine care for our Members and staff. He has overseen the transformation of our Bank which has included several mergers and changing our name from a Credit Union to a Member Owned Bank. In addition, Mark played a key role in the introduction of the first regionally based “Tech Hub” in Bathurst, along with a community owned “Start-Up Incubator (Upstairs)”, which is also located in our premises at Bathurst. 

Mark has made a significant contribution to the broader Member Owned banking sector, serving as a Director of Cuscal and participating in several industry initiatives, including what was the first ever collaborative capital raising by credit unions”.

Mark said “it has been an honour and privilege to serve our Members and I hope that my team and I have been able to make our Members’ lives a little better through our efforts in assisting them with their financial needs. I have been extremely lucky to have been able to work with a tremendous team of staff and Directors who share my belief in looking after the best interest of Members at all times. In particular, I would like to thank the two Chairs I have served during my time at Unity Bank, firstly John Coombs, who always encouraged and supported me, and my current Chair, Mick Doleman, who is an inspiration to all and is someone that my team and I have great respect for”.

Chair Doleman, advised that Mark and the Board have agreed on a Transitional Plan that will provide the Board with sufficient time to appoint a successor with a smooth and effective transition.

 

Mick Doleman

Chair, Unity Bank

 

Bankstown City Unity Bank Interest Rate Changes Effective 1 April 2020

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Bankstown City Unity Bank today announced rate cuts across its lending portfolio following the Reserve Bank’s decision on 4 March 2020 to reduce the official cash rate.

Effective 1 April 2020, Bankstown City Unity Bank will reduce all new and existing Owner Occupied and Investment variable home loans, Line of Credits and Business Overdrafts by 20 basis points.

Bankstown City Unity Bank’s decision was made after thoroughly considering all impacts – with our Members’ interests always top of mind. The decision on interest rates signifies a balanced approach between the needs of borrowers and depositors while maintaining Bankstown City Unity Bank’s financial strength for our Members now and into the future.

While a reduction in interest rates is good news for borrowers, this is not the case for depositors, pensioners and self-funded retirees, whom rely on the interest they earn from deposits to fund their living costs. It is important to remember that the RBA cash rate is only one of several variables that affect decisions about interest rates.

The new rates on our savings/deposit products will take effect on 19 March 2020, with the exception of changes to our Bonus Saver accounts which will take effect on 1 April 2020. All new rates are available on our website. The Bank’s interest rates remain competitive across lending and deposit products, especially compared to the big banks.

As always, we pride ourselves on looking after the best interests of our Members and remain committed to providing exceptional value through our products and services.

If you require any further information about the impact of the above rate changes, please don’t hesitate to give us a call on 1300 65 4477.

 

New Chief Executive Officer Appointed for Unity Bank Limited

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The Chair of Unity Bank, Mr Mick Doleman, today announced the appointment of Danny Pavisic as the new Chief Executive Officer.

Mr Doleman said, “I am very pleased that our current Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Danny Pavisic, has been successful in securing the Chief Executive role, effective the 27th April 2020. Danny, who has served in senior Executive positions at Unity for the past 15 years, has demonstrated the leadership qualities the Board believe are essential in fulfilling the Chief Executive’s role. They include strong commercial skills, a passion and commitment to looking after the best interests of Members and staff, and the highest level of integrity”.

Responding to his appointment, Mr Pavisic said “Being appointed to lead an organisation that has an outstanding record of looking after its Members, during good times and difficult ones, is a privilege and something that I feel honoured to have been given the opportunity to do. The Bank has one of the strongest balance sheets in the country and a wonderful and dedicated team of staff who genuinely care for their Members, which places us in a great position to continue to improve the financial well‐being of our Members.

My immediate focus will be to ensure we assist all our Members impacted by Covid‐19 get through this. For 50 years we have helped our Members when they needed us most and the current challenges allow us to demonstrate the values and principles of the founders of this member‐owned Bank.

As an essential service, we have an important role to play in ensuring our country comes through this challenging time in as good as shape as possible”.

Mr Doleman once again thanks outgoing Chief Executive Officer Mark Genovese for his service over the past 17 years which has seen the Bank become an organisation that Members, staff and directors can all be very proud of.


Danny Pavisic