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Ombudsman applauds CBA’s move to lower costs on small businesses

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) has applauded the decision by the Commonwealth Bank (CBA) to lower costs incurred by small businesses and family enterprises with a turnover of less than $250,000.

The big four bank announced its move to act on lower-cost routing on Thursday, which will see customers offered 1.1 per cent for all in-store card transactions and 1.5 per cent online transactions, regardless of the type of card or interchange rate starting, from next month.

“The use of cashless transactions, particularly tap-and-go payments, has dramatically increased due to COVID-19, and it is vital to ensure that all small businesses are being offered the lowest-cost options from their service provider or financial institution,” ASBFEO Bruce Billson said.

Meanwhile, CBA will automatically waive three months of merchant fees for small businesses impacted by the recent COVID-19 lockdowns which the bank said equates to over $7 million back into their pockets.

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“Many small businesses and family enterprises already operating on tight margins and battling the disruption to their businesses caused by COVID-19 can’t afford the added burden of paying higher than necessary fees for their financial transactions,” the bank said.

“The cost of these higher and hidden charges across the economy is many millions of dollars — money that could be better put to work to grow business and employment prospects.”

CBA’s executive general manager, Everyday Business Banking, James Fowle, said the decision came on the back of overwhelming feedback from its merchant customers.

Ombudsman applauds CBA’s move to lower costs on small businesses
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