Australia's big four lenders have long dominated the country's A$4.7 trillion ($4.9t) banking sector. But as they struggle to rebuild their reputation after a Royal Commission inquiry that exposed widespread misconduct, they face an unusual threat to their cosy oligopoly: cashed-up foreign rivals.

HSBC, which is traditionally viewed in Australia as a bank for expatriates, is one of a number of overseas rivals investing and winning share among locals in one of the world's most profitable banking markets.

Following an aggressive push into retail banking, the UK-listed lender expanded its mortgage book by 37 per cent to A$17.9 billion in

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Asian banks seek slice of Australia profits