Article:

COVID-19 Australian Bank Assistance

25 March 2020

Darren Stacey , National Leader, Finance Solutions
Executive Director, Debt Advisory
|

As the impacts of COVID-19 continue to escalate, and the scope of challenges flow into the broader economy, the banks in Australia are rolling out larger support packages for their clients.

Industries are now feeling impacts across the board. Successfully navigating through the crisis will require businesses to engage with key stakeholders early, before the financial impacts leave little to no options.

Key stakeholders include your bank, creditors and the Australian Tax Office (ATO).

Most banks in Australia have offered a range of assistance options. While all the banks have advised that tailored assistance will be considered on a case-by-case basis, the following table outlines the specific areas they are offering help.

Business Customers ANZ CBA NAB WBC BOQ Suncorp
Defer Payments

Up to 6 Months

Automatic for
April-June then opt-in
for 3 more months
Up to 6 months Up to 6 months for
SME loans <$3m
Yes Yes, up to
6 months
Interest Rate Relief

Yes, by 0.25% on
top of previous
announcements

Yes, by 0.25%

2.0% cut on new
loans / overdrafts for
SME,

1.0% cut for existing
loans

2.0% cut on all
overdrafts,

1.0% cut for SME
                        No increases
Extension of loan term     Up to 3 months Up to 6 months    
Restructuring & consolidating loans

 

  Case by case Case by case   Case by case
Breaking term deposits without rate / fee impact Yes Yes   Yes Yes Yes
Deferred Business Credit Card payments     Yes Yes    
Business financial counselling access       Yes    
Merchant terminal fee waivers   Up to 3 months   Up to 3 months    
Additional bank staffing to process decisions   Yes        
Fee Relief   Yes   No establishment
fees for equipment
finance and fee
redraw
Yes  
Working capital assistance Yes, temporary
increases on
overdraft facilities
for 12 months
Yes, unsecured
lending up to
$250,000 with no
fees / repayments
for 6 months,
or <$50m turnover

Pre-assessment
for selected
clients for
increases

  Yes, by 
arrangement
Yes
Special term deposit rates Yes     Yes Yes  
Personal customers ANZ CBA NAB WBC BOQ Suncorp
Defer Payments

Yes, for 3 months
with an option
to extend for 3
more months 

Yes, for up to
6 months
Yes, for up to
6 months,
including a 
3 month checkpoint
Yes, for 3 months
with an option
to extend for 3
more months
   
Interest Rate Relief

Yes, by 0.15%
and special fixed
rate available


 

Special fixed rates
available

 

                         
Special arrangements regarding arrears         Yes  
Special Term Deposit Rates

 

  Yes Yes                             

Note: this list is current as at 23/03/20 based on each bank’s public announcements

Where in doubt, please speak to your bank as early as possible. In many cases, seeking assistance from your existing bank is normally a more sustainable solution (and less expensive) than seeking unsecured working capital loans. If you’re faced with uncertainty regarding your business cash flow and would like assistance to talk about the options for dealing with your finance requirements, our Debt Advisory team is here to help. We are experienced bankers who can help guide you through your discussions with your bank.

It may be the case that assistance from your bank is only part of the solution and other strategies may be required. We can help guide you to our restructuring experts who can provide assistance in navigating these issues.

Prepare your business

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