Regulator news and government inquiries

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Consumers’ Federation of Australia (CFA) and CHOICE has made a submission to the Productivity Commission about future National Competition Policy reforms. The submission stresses the need to analyse potential policy reforms with a focus on their effects on consumers and households, urging the Commission to prioritise understanding how different groups might be affected. The submission’s…

Read More Productivity Commission National Competition Policy Reforms Submission

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The 14 recommendations of a Senate Select Committee inquiry into supermarket prices included several aimed at increasing the transparency of retail grocery prices for consumers. These recommendations included (in Recommendation 9 ) that: The Australian Government amend the Unit Pricing Code made under the Competition and Consumer Act 2010, so that supermarkets are required to:…

Read More Senate Supermarket Inquiry Recommends Grocery Price Transparency

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The Parliamentary Joint Committee on Corporations and Financial Services commenced an inquiry into the systems and regulatory framework relating to financial abuse at the start of April 2024. The period for written submissions is now half-way through and will officially end on 14 June 2024. Submissions can be made publicly but the committee is also…

Read More Financial Abuse Inquiry – 1 month left for written submissions

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New research from CHOICE has revealed 4 in 5 CHOICE supporters think it’s unfair for supermarkets to charge higher prices for customers who don’t sign up for loyalty programs.  The survey of over 8,000 CHOICE supporters also found nearly half of respondents were worried about the data being collected about them through loyalty programs. The…

Read More Supermarket Loyalty Programs: The Price Isn’t Right

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A rise in reported breaches of the industry Code of Practice indicates better reporting from customer-owned banking institutions but also a sign of the need for improvements in reporting and remediation.  The Annual Data Report from the Customer Owned Banking Code Compliance Committee (COBCCC), which covers the 2022-23 reporting period, shows that the number of customer…

Read More Customer Owned Banks Urged to Continue Improving Reporting Practices

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CHOICE response to announcement Qantas has agreed to pay $120 million to settle ACCCenforcement action. Quotes attributable to Rosie Thomas, Director of Campaigns and Communications at CHOICE: “Qantas agreeing to pay $120 million dollars and admitting it misled consumers after ACCC court action is a significant result. The proposed settlement sends a very clear message…

Read More Compensation for Cancelled Flights Should be the Norm

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ASIC is warning consumers about an increase in the sophistication of fake bond and term deposit scams where scammers are impersonating little-known legitimate financial services businesses, often those without a website or digital footprint. Scammers are mirroring real businesses’ disclosure documents, addresses, International Securities Identification Numbers (ISINs), Australian business numbers (ABNs) and Australian financial services…

Read More Scam Alert Issued by ASIC as Scammers Change Methods

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Researchers from Deakin University and the Victorian University of Wellington are conducting an Australian Communications Consumer Action Network (ACCAN) funded project and are looking for participants. The goal of the project is to understand how ‘communication’ is understood by diverse consumers, with the view to better inform the regulation of digital communications technologies. Participation will…

Read More Consumer Research on Defining Communication

Ian Jarratt of the Queensland Consumers Association in a supermarket with unit price labels in the background

The Queensland Consumers Association (QCA) is calling for the inquiries into supermarkets now being undertaken by a Senate Select Committee, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) and a Queensland Parliament Select Committee to recommend improvements to the clarity of supermarket pricing. In submissions to each inquiry, the QCA says improvements are essential in order…

Read More Advocates Call For Supermarket Inquiries to Recommend Clearer Pricing

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As a provider of education, advocacy, and financial counselling services to people across North and Far North Queensland, ICAN recently provided a submission to the Inquiry into Supermarket Pricing in Queensland. Our submission focused on the significant price differences people experience when shopping depending on whether they are based in metropolitan Queensland or remote and…

Read More The Price Is Not Right: ICAN’s Queensland Supermarket Submission