ANZ invests in micro credit

About 120,000 people do not have a bank account, while one million people have no personal loans, mortgage or insurance, research commissioned by ANZ Bank shows. Research for the bank by consultancy Chant Link shows that the average person uses six different financial products, while high income earners use eight. But one million Australians have only a basic bank account. Lack of income, insufficient documentation and financial illiteracy mostly account for their exclusion from mainstream financial services.

In a step that is both public relations and business development, ANZ will introduce a suite of programs to help address financial exclusion. ANZ will double its spending on programs directed at increasing low-income earners' access to mainstream financial services. The initiatives include low-cost loans of $500 to $2,000 for people who now rely on fringe credit providers and also provide micro-credit programs in Aboriginal communities.

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