6 May 2010

Two banks signal end to guarantee participation

7:06 am on 6 May 2010

Two of the country's main banks have now indicated they're unlikely to participate in the Government's extended retail deposit guarantee scheme.

The Government's scheme ends in October this year. Banks and non-bank institutions have to re-apply to take part in the extended scheme which will cover them until December 2011.

The scheme costs Westpac about $15 million a year. The bank's New Zealand chief executive, George Frazis, says he believes the worst of the recession is over and Westpac's strong credit rating should be enough to assure customers of its financial strength.

Last week, ANZ New Zealand said it hadn't made a final decision about whether it will participate in the extended scheme, but didn't think New Zealand's major banks needed it.