ANZ bank

Australia’s market regulator has launched civil penalty proceedings against Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) for allegedly applying incorrect charges to customers’ credit card accounts.

The regulator said in a statement that approximately 165,750 ANZ customers were incorrectly charged cash advance fees and interest for withdrawing or transferring money from their credit card accounts between May 2016 and November 2018.

The charges appear to relate to system errors rather than any deliberate attempt to deceive.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) said that some customers were incorrectly charged thousands of dollars in fees.

“This alleged misconduct is the result of system errors within ANZ and a lack of effort to comprehensively fix these issues,” said ASIC Deputy Chair Sarah Court.

ANZ acknowledged the proceedings, highlighting that they related to only a specific area of its operations.

“ASIC’s claims relate to a particular situation, where funds are deposited to put a credit card account into a credit balance, and a cash advance is subsequently made on the account drawing down on the credit balance before the deposit is processed,” the bank said in a statement.

ANZ has already paid out more than A$10 million ($7 million) to customers who were affected by the error up until November 17th 2018. ASIC said the new proceedings are seeking remedy for customers who have been wrongly charged since that date.

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