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Satisfaction with New Zealand banks down from a year ago

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (New Zealand), 12 months to Sep. 2018, n = 6,243; 12 months to Sep. 2019, n = 6,328. Base: New Zealanders 14+. 1 Based on customer numbers. *Includes banks not shown.
New research from Roy Morgan shows that consumer satisfaction with banks overall in New Zealand has declined to 75.6% in the 12 months to September 2019, a drop of 3.5% points from 79.1% a year ago. 

Seven of the nine largest banks showed declines in satisfaction. Just two major banks bucked the broader trend and improved: Rabobank up 5.1% points and SBS Bank up 7.2% points.

These results are from Roy Morgan’s Single Source (New Zealand) survey, which includes interviews with over 6,000 banking and finance consumers throughout New Zealand per annum.

TSB is the lone bank to top 80% customer satisfaction 

TSB is now the only bank with customer satisfaction above 80%. Its market-leading 81.3% puts it ahead of Kiwibank on 78.5% and the improving Rabobank on 77.9%. ANZ in fourth position on 75.8% is the only other major bank above the market average of 75.6%.

Several banks are clustered just below this average mark, including The Co-operative Bank (75.4%), Westpac (75.4%), BNZ (75.3%), ASB (74.9%) and SBS Bank (74.6%). Despite ranking ahead of many of its peers, the major bank that had the largest decline in satisfaction in the last year was Kiwibank, down 6.2% points over that period.

Roy Morgan CEO Michele Levine says changes to the capital requirements for New Zealand banks are set to keep the pressure on: “Customer satisfaction ratings for New Zealand’s major banks are down by 3.5% points to 75.6%, with seven out of nine of the largest banks experiencing a drop in satisfaction compared to a year ago.

“This decline came before the findings of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand’s capital adequacy framework review were released earlier this month. The RBNZ has mandated that banks operating in New Zealand must start to increase their capital ratio to 16% of ‘risk-weighted assets’ from the present minimum requirement of 10.5% starting from July 2020. For the big four Australian-owned banks (ANZ, ASB, BNZ & Westpac) this capital ratio requirement is set even higher at 18%.” 

Increasing the capital ratio requirements will have a significant impact explained Ms Levine: “The increase in minimum capital ratios is set to create a tightening in financial conditions and a likely increase in borrowing costs. In turn, this will lead to a reduction in profitability for the banks, and has raised questions about whether Australian banks might prefer to sell their New Zealand subsidiaries rather than be subjected to a tighter regulatory regime than they’ve been accustomed to.”

“The new requirements would appear to provide a further advantage to second-tier banks such as TSB and Rabobank, which already lead the sector in customer satisfaction. Roy Morgan will be keeping a close eye on the satisfaction with banks on both sides of the Tasman as they face significant challenges in both markets over the coming year.” 

New Zealand Consumer Banking Satisfaction - Largest Consumer Banks1

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (New Zealand), 12 months to Sep. 2018, n = 6,243; 12 months to Sep. 2019, n = 6,328. Base: New Zealanders 14+.  1 Based on customer numbers. *Includes banks not shown.

View the Consumer Banking in New Zealand Customer Satisfaction Report.

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About Roy Morgan

Roy Morgan is the largest independent Australian research company, with offices throughout Australia, as well as in Indonesia, the United States and the United Kingdom. A full service research organisation specialising in omnibus and syndicated data, Roy Morgan has over 70 years’ experience in collecting objective, independent information on consumers.

Margin of Error

The margin of error to be allowed for in any estimate depends mainly on the number of interviews on which it is based. Margin of error gives indications of the likely range within which estimates would be 95% likely to fall, expressed as the number of percentage points above or below the actual estimate. Allowance for design effects (such as stratification and weighting) should be made as appropriate.

Sample Size

Percentage Estimate


25% or 75%

10% or 90%

5% or 95%