Australia is one of the biggest and most profitable markets for financial gains in the entire Asia-Pacific region. In 2003-04, the total turnover in Australian financial market crossed AUS$68,900 billion, a total of 20.4% increase from the previous year. The stock market of Australia experiences a regular flow of money transactions and is the largest in the entire Asia-Pacific region. The free floating stock in the Australian capital market is so high that it equals to the combined stock of Korea and Taiwan and is almost twice than that of Hong Kong. The liquidity of stocks and depth of the Australian financial services market is a great attraction for all investors.
The status of Australia as the leading centre for fund regulation since the mid 1990’s, with ample opportunities in private banking and as a beneficial location for back and middle-office processing has attracted investors from all over the world. Moreover, Australia’s investment fund asset is the largest in Asia and fourth largest in the whole world. The growth of this investment asset pool provides ample business opportunities to financial corporations and at the same time provides stability against the instability in the world economic market.
The Australian financial services sector has provided the right kind of environment needed for the growth of indigenous foreign exchange market in the last few decades. From April 1995 to April 2004, Australia became the fastest-growing foreign exchange market in the whole Asia-Pacific region with an increase of 103% in terms of total turnover. As a result of this stupendous growth, many renowned financial corporations like Deutsche Bank, Citigroup and Morgan Stanley Group have their leading Asia-Pacific processing hubs and back-offices in Australia.
Australian financial services market provides a unique environment for the growth of business. Australia has a very strong global ranking in the financial market of the world. Australia has the seventh biggest foreign exchange market, ninth largest stock market exchange, fourth largest investment fund asset pool, AU$ is the sixth most traded currency, eleventh largest international debt securities market and US$/AU$ is the fourth most widely used traded currency pair. Apart from these, new financial reforms introduced under the Financial Services Reform Act, like transparency and integrity and maintaining high standards of prudential stability have earned a great repute for the Australian financial services market.
Australia also enjoys a favourable geographical location which further facilitates the Australian financial market as it is the first leading financial market which operates in the Asian time zone. This allows better trade relation with China, Japan and other Asian markets to be served at a much faster rate. Another significant advantage is the skilled Australian workforce. Australia has about 350,000 people working in the finance sector itself. Australia also offers a competitive price for office buildings with all the modern amenities.
The two major government organisations which promote financial activities in Australia are Axiss Australia and Invest Australia. While Axiss Australia is an inward investment agency, the later promotes Australia as a lucrative investment hub. All these factors combine together to promote Australia as one of the most profitable financial services sector and one of the most powerful economies.