Click here for video transcript
Elliott said “sadly” banks were used to crises. But that meant the system was also well prepared, particularly following the rebuilding following the 2008 financial crisis. It also meant ANZ could draw on the experience of veteran bankers – even some who had retired.
“ANZ - and the banks in Australia as an industry - have never had more capital,” he said. “Never in our history have we had more capital, we've never had more liquidity… and we've never had lower credit losses.
“What that means is that not only are we willing to assist, we are able to assist and we have the resources."
That combination of more capital, historically good credit quality, sufficient liquidity coupled with official support mean banks were more than able to continue to function as an essential service in the community and withstand the earnings impact of lower interest rates and even extraordinary monetary policy.
Elliott also stressed the emphasis ANZ had on supporting customers and encouraged them to communicate regularly with the bank about any issues.
“If you have issues, if you're worried, if you've lost your job, if your business is suffering. The best thing you can do is talk to your banker,” he said.
“Don't wait, don't be shy, don't be fearful. We are here to help and we have the ability and willingness to do so. But we can only help if we know about the trouble you're in and the earlier we act together, the better will be for everybody.”
Andrew Cornell is managing editor of bluenotes
To see the full interview, watch the video above