The Murray Inquiry asserts that Australia’s financial system has performed well since the Wallis Inquiry and has many strong characteristics. But it also has a number of weaknesses: taxation and regulatory settings distort the flow of funding to the real economy; it remains susceptible to financial shocks; superannuation is not delivering retirement incomes efficiently; unfair consumer outcomes remain prevalent; and policy settings do not focus on the benefits of competition and innovation. As a result, the system is prone to calls for more regulation.
The Final Report focuses on seven primary themes:
- Funding the Australian economy: reduce distortions that impede the efficient market allocation of financial resources like taxation, information imbalances and unnecessary regulation.
- Competition: strengthen competition by removing impediments to its development.
- Resilience: strengthen the economy by making the financial system more resilient.
- Superannuation and retirement incomes: lift the value of the superannuation system and retirement incomes.
- Innovation: drive economic growth and productivity through settings that promote innovation.
- Consumer outcomes: enhance confidence and trust by creating an environment in which financial firms treat customers fairly.
- Regulatory system: enhance regulator independence and accountability, and minimise the need for future regulation.
The Final Report states that its recommendations seek to improve efficiency, resilience and fair treatment in the Australian financial system, to allow it to achieve its potential in supporting economic growth and enhancing standards of living for current and future generations.