Australia’s second largest bank (which owns the NZ Westpac) unveiled a special 10 cents-a-share dividend payout after posting first-half cash earnings of $NZD4.22 billion.
Michael Bennet, Banking correspondent for the Australian, reported that the high earnings were driven by, “cost-cutting, lower bad debts and a margin boost from holding back some of the official rate cuts from homeowners.”
Last week Westpac held their quarterly Union Council meeting. The main issues of discussion centred on targets, staffing, the Takutai relocation, and FIRST Union’s relationship with the Bank. The union council view was that this forum was constructive with bank agreeing for local union councillor Taz Khan and 2 other delegates set up a committee to work on resolving issues for banking operations members.
The bank agreed to investigate the sites that identified issues associated with staffing levels and agreement for Senior Management to be present at these forums.
FIRST Union members have voted to ratify the Westpac collective agreement, following negotiations in November. The pay increase is 3% for 12 months plus 0.7% for 4 months for a 16 months term expiring on 31/3/14.
The bank withdrew all of its aggressive claims relating to performance pay, hours of work, and termination of employment due to medical incapacity, and agreed that it will be a requirement to provide coaching, support and training, and take into account external/local factors, when making a decision to PIP or discipline someone.