With the big capital review behind us and the big four Australian banks promising to be on their best behaviour, what should we do now to further shore up the financial sector?
How about giving Kiwibank a fuel injection so it can offer the Aussies some real competition in the New Zealand market?
When you consider that about 90 per cent of the market is controlled by the four Australian giants, it's hard to see how a serious local player would be a bad thing.
The most logical way to get Kiwibank up to a meaningful competitive scale would be by partially floating it on the NZX, retaining control but taking some cash which could be reinvested in the business.
That would also give the NZX a much needed boost, and open Kiwibank up to direct investment by local KiwiSaver funds and local institutions.
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Yes, that would mean a small percentage of foreign ownership and it would certainly be politically unpalatable with this Coalition Government, which maintains an ideological opposition to state assets sales.
Despite that opposition, the Government has never contemplated nationalising any of its current mixed-model ownership companies - presumably because they have all been unmitigated success stories.
If parties like New Zealand First and the Greens are serious about lessening foreign corporate dominance in this country, they should be open to unshackling Kiwibank.
To be fair, both these parties would likely be okay with scaling Kiwibank up, they'd just prefer to do it directly with taxpayer money to retain 100 per cent control.
The more centrist Labour Party seems a bit caught between not wanting to sell down and not wanting to nationalise.
But if they stay in power they may need to act on Kiwibank.
The sale of 47 per cent to the NZ Super Fund and ACC in 2017 helped put the ownership structure on a slightly more commercial footing but was really a stop-gap measure.
If we want Kiwibank to grow materially it makes no sense for it to retain NZ Post - increasingly a beleaguered courier - as its parent.
Kiwibank has certainly made a big impact with the public since it launched in 2002 but largely only at the lower-value, retail end of the market.
Meanwhile, the Australian end of the banking sector has hardly been out of the headlines this year.
Whether we are dealing with leadership scandals, regulatory breaches or just the earnest and complex debate about capital ratios - 2019 has been a shocker.
Hopefully the big four Australian Banks will - as they've promised - lift their game in 2020.
Perhaps the tighter capital rules, a tougher regulatory environment and a genuine attitude shift from the leadership will quietly usher in an era of more moderate profits, and a more modest executive culture.
Or maybe that sentence would look better on a Tui beer billboard.
Regardless, the turmoil spilling across the Tasman has provided a reminder of just how imbalanced the New Zealand banking sector is.
Kiwibank still has a market share of not much more than 4 per cent by value of assets.
The more business-minded brains in this government must see that mixed-model ownership has proved to be an overwhelming success for every organisation it has been applied to.
Air New Zealand has thrived since the government took a controlling stake in 2001.
Port of Tauranga has thrived as a listed company, majority owned by the Bay of Plenty Regional council.
The listing and partial sell down of Meridian, Mighty River and Genesis raised five billion dollars in selling almost half of each these assets.
The remaining taxpayer-owned 50 per cent shareholdings now being worth more than the original 100 per cent shareholdings, presale.
More importantly, shareholder returns are 70 per cent higher than when the businesses were run as state-owned enterprises.
What could Kiwibank be worth?
Well, certainly more than $1 billion and probably more like $1.5b if it was listed on the stock exchange.
In September 2016, NZ Super paid $263 million to take a 25 per cent stake in Kiwi Group Holdings, while ACC has paid $231m for a 22 per cent stake.
The valuation done at the time valued Kiwibank at $1.1b.
A back-of-the-envelope valuation, using a PE (price to earnings) multiple based on similar other second-tier banks in Australia, would give it a value of up to $1.4b.
It would be a sizeable float by New Zealand standards, attracting plenty of investor attention.
A percentage could be set aside for local retail investors to ensure a high percentage of Kiwi uptake.
Once listed, Kiwibank could put the foot down on organic growth plans or it could raise capital to buy up some of the opposition - local minnows or potentially parts of the Aussie bank business.
Let's not forget that at least two of the big Australian banks this year threatened to retreat from parts of their New Zealand business if the Reserve Bank's new capital rules put too much of a dampener on their profits.
Were they serious? Probably not.
But if the heat stays on in Australia then we may see them look to streamline. There have already been some big sell downs of Asian assets by Australian banks.
And if they do decide to cut their losses then it makes sense for a New Zealand business to be ready step in.