Bendigo Bank sets aside more money as it gazes into coronavirus crystal ball

Picture: NONI HYETT
Picture: NONI HYETT

THE Bendigo and Adelaide Bank has set aside extra millions to guard itself from any more economic pain.

It has earmarked an extra $148 million to help it through any future issues the pandemic brings, the bank told the Australian Stock Exchange on Thursday.

The money is part of a range of measures the nation's fourth largest bank has taken as the economy reopens following months-long lock downs.

Bendigo Bank is assuming the recovery will be slow, in part because of concerns about lower GDP, falls in property prices and higher unemployment.

That said, it is still too early to say with certainty what the future could bring in the "unprecedented" economic downturn, the bank told the ASX.

Its head of economic & market research David Robertson has previously said the sensible approach is to prepare for a range of scenarios, including "V" shaped events in which the economy crashes and rebounds quickly.

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The bank on Thursday told the ASX it remains in a strong financial position.

Loan repayments from customers have remained broadly stable, though bankers are seeing a slight increase in late payments from business and agribusiness clients.

Managing director Marnie Baker said the group remains "fully committed" customers and communities during the pandemic.

"We have provided more than 20,000 personal and business accounts with dedicated support to give them the best possible opportunity to weather the COVID-19 impacts," she told the ASX.

"COVID-19 has demonstrated the flexibility of our organisation to adapt at scale in how we do business in line with our vision to be Australia's bank of choice."

This story Bendigo Bank braces for new, unpredictable COVID-19 pain first appeared on Bendigo Advertiser.