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Mobile banking tools help Australians keep festive funds in check this Christmas

With Christmas less than two weeks away, Australians are proving to be a little ‘spend shy’ by making their Christmas lists and checking their bank balances more than twice, in a bid to keep track of their festive funds.

Research commissioned by Bank of Melbourne found three quarters of Australians (75%) check their bank account balance between one and five times a week to make sure they are spending within their means.

Furthermore, mobile and internet banking is the tool of choice for Australians wanting to stick to their savings plan, with 80% using mobile or internet banking to check their bank account balances before making purchases. Women (37%) were the most conscientious when checking their balances on their smartphones prior to purchasing compared with men (32%).

However, despite Aussies’ intention to prove themselves as savvy spenders, the report revealed almost half (46%) are unable to specifically state how much money is in their savings account at any given time, with 18-25 year olds the worst offenders (84%).

Bank of Melbourne Chief Executive Scott Tanner said Australians are working hard to make their funds stretch further this Christmas, with 85% saying they will spend ‘less or the same’ this Christmas as last year.

“Keeping track of spending can be difficult around this time of year and checking how much money is in your account can be time-consuming,” said Mr Tanner.

“We want to save our customers time and fit in with their needs and lifestyle. Our expanding branch network, extended opening hours in certain locations and friendly and helpful service is supported by leading edge online and mobile solutions that deliver a more convenient banking experience.”

Bank of Melbourne has just launched MoneyMeter, which enables customers to easily check their account balances with a simple swipe of a finger on their iPhone.

Account information is presented in a simple ‘gauge’ style format avoiding the need to log in and out of the Bank of Melbourne mobile banking app. Customers can also set and monitor savings goals through a graphical display, which shows whether their savings sit within a predetermined balance range.

Mr Tanner said this was important as more Australians are shifting their spending towards using only their savings, or at least a combination of credit and savings.

The research indicates almost half of Australians (45%) intend to make their Christmas purchases with ‘savings only’, while a further 38% plan to use a combination of savings and credit, further illustrating how critical it is to keep a close eye on your account balances. When asked ‘how much money do you need in your savings account to feel secure’ the most common response (30%) was between $500 and $2,500.

“Given 65% of log-ins to mobile banking are from customers who simply want to check their balance or look at their account, we know MoneyMeter will be a welcome addition to our collection of mobile tools that bring banking solutions to your fingertips,” Mr Tanner said.

About MoneyMeter

  • Provides customers with ability to easily view the balances of up to two accounts with a single swipe of their iPhone screen – savings, transaction or credit card accounts can be viewed.
  • 5 graphical ‘gauge’ formats to choose from – Amp Meter, Fuel Gauge, Speedometer, Thermometer and Battery.
  • Allows customers to set their own low and high dollar range for their gauge to graphically highlight where their balance is sitting within that range.
  • Customers can choose to hide or display their actual balance when swiping.
  • After registering once, there’s no need to log in to mobile banking to access MoneyMeter – customers can simply swipe their iPhone to see the balance of their chosen account in a ‘gauge’ style visual format.
  • MoneyMeter is available as part of the Bank of Melbourne banking app for iPhone.

The research was conducted nationally for St.George Banking Group and Bank of Melbourne earlier this month with 1,000 survey participants from across all States.

For more information please visit a Bank of Melbourne branch, contact 13 22 66 or visit