National Australia Bank continued to charge its clients recurring payment fees for money transfers between January 2017 and July 2018, while knowing it had no contractual right to do so, according to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).
The bank wrongfully charged payment costs totaling A$139,845 to 2,888 personal banking customers and 513 business accounts on 74,593 times, according to the regulator.
“If systems have let customers down, we expect all financial institutions, especially our banks, to act quickly to reduce consumer harm,” said ASIC Deputy Chair Sarah Court.
NAB admitted in an email to Reuters that “some customers were incorrectly charged for periodical payment fees several years ago,” and that it has completed a remediation procedure and returned more than A$8.3 million to affected clients.
Over the years, Australian regulators have punished a host of firms for breaches and noncompliance issues, with the “Big Four” banks bearing the brunt of the punishment after a Royal Commission into the sector revealed widespread malfeasance.
NAB shares were trading 0.7% lower at 0221 GMT, after falling as much as 1.3% earlier in the day.