Australians lack free money: banking tool helps you find it

Australians are missing out on thousands of free perks they don’t know they are entitled to, but a practical app is changing that.

Australians are pocketing millions of dollars they may not have previously realized they were entitled to after being enticed by a bank’s handy new tool.

In almost every developed economy in the world, 10 to 30 percent of government benefits and discounts go unclaimed each year.

This is one of the reasons the Commonwealth Bank has developed the “Benefits Finder” in its app, which it launched in 2019, with a sharp increase in recent usage.

Customers have filed over 1.5 million complaints, up from over one million in February this year.

Andrew McMullan, director of data and analytics at CBA, said the increase came after the bank began tapping into its data and analytics capabilities, as well as artificial intelligence and machine learning , to contact customers potentially affected by various lockdown states and provide assistance.

“We recently sent over 66 million localized and personalized in-app messages to affected customers,” he said.

“We regularly contact customers within 24 hours, and sometimes the same day, following any government announcement indicating additional support available. “

So far this year, New South Wales customers have accounted for over 50% of all claims started in Australia, followed by Victoria with almost 20% and Queensland with over 10%.

Comparing June to July as the Delta variant of Covid-19 wreaked havoc, the number of claims started in Victoria and South Australia more than doubled, while NSW spiked nearly 60%, reported Dr McMullan said.

“We quickly saw the Covid-19 disaster payment become one of the most popular benefits since it was recently added to Benefits Finder,” he said.

“This is no surprise to us, given that this particular benefit supports workers adversely affected by a state public health order.”

The other two most common types of benefits that were launched by customers using the tool in the first six months of this year were ASIC and unclaimed money such as money in bank accounts and unaffected or claimed life insurance policies for some time. , and NSW Dine & Discover vouchers.

According to the ABC, Benefits Finder saved clients more than $ 481 million in utility bills and additional government payments between July 2019 and August 2020, with many clients able to experience cost savings each year.

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