Australia’s ‘Big Four’ banks have for many years generated some of the largest profits in Australian corporate history[1]. During this time repeated scandals have emerged across a range of services and financial institutions, and the evidence is clear: something is systemically wrong.

Investment fraud, refusal to pay out genuine insurance claims, alleged Ponzi schemes and ASIC investigations into the rigging of inter-bank lending rates are among the many scandals[2][3][4][5]. In addition, the Australian Federal Police has failed to promptly investigate what appear to be blatant breaches of UN sanctions for the purposes of future monetary gain[6].

These scandals are unacceptable to all Australians and institutional corruption is at risk of taking hold. A Royal Commission is needed to rid the financial and banking sectors of unethical behaviour before it leads to a major crisis.

The Panama Papers disclosure has demonstrated an enormous gap in enforcement of financial regulations worldwide. The questionable and illegal global financial activities of certain rich and powerful individuals and companies have effectively been given a green light by government inaction.

“The Pirate Party stands for fair taxation and an end to tax loopholes everywhere by supporting reforms that enhance access to information, improve transparency and bolster media freedoms,” said Thomas Randle, Councillor for the Pirate Party. “Given the significant donations financial companies are funnelling into both the Coalition and the Australian Labor Party[7], Australian democracy is at risk from a collapse in confidence in our political system if nothing is done. A Royal Commission is the only way to quickly get to the bottom of the unethical practices we are seeing far too often.”

[1] http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-08-09/profit-season-cranks-up-with-blue-chip-reports/6681440
[2] http://www.news.com.au/finance/business/banking/commonwealth-bank-ceo-ian-narev-apologises-to-customers/news-story/496bdd1c966dbf8e1ff87f91d97b961d
[3] http://www.afr.com/brand/chanticleer/cbas-comminsure-fails-the-compassion-test-20160310-gnfrcq
[4] http://www.smh.com.au/business/banking-and-finance/commonwealth-bank-staff-implicated-in-alleged-76m-fraud-20160204-gmllia.html
[5] http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-04-06/asic-hauls-westpac-into-court-on-rate-rigging-regulations/7302340
[6] http://www.abc.net.au/7.30/content/2015/s4438502.htm
[7] http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-02-01/political-donations-parties-data-search/7129064

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