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NAB:Banks take Wholseale Finan. mrkts Online-AusMarkets.com

Document date:  Mon 06 Nov 2000
Published:  Mon 06 Nov 2000 11:39:31
Document No:  169657
Document part:  A
Market Flag:  N
Classification:  Other

NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED               2000-11-06  ASX-SIGNAL-G

HOMEX - Melbourne                                                     

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A consortium of Australia's banks have announced their intention to
form an electronic portal for the online distribution of wholesale
financial products and services.

Australia & New Zealand Banking Group, Commonwealth Bank of
Australia, National Australia Bank and Westpac Banking Corporation
will establish an independent company which will operate and manage
the multi-contributor, multi-product platform to be known as
AusMarkets.com.

AusMarkets.com will provide large institutional and corporate clients
with a single access point for transacting wholesale financial market
products offered by each participant. AusMarkets.com will also
deliver information and risk management content such as research,
news, rates and portfolio analytics. This one access point will reach
across a broad range of wholesale financial products within financial
markets.

While the initial shareholders will be the four major Australian
banks, it is intended to be an open and inclusive platform for other
market participants.

The range of products and services initially offered will be
introduced in 2001. The initial focus of product delivery will be on
money market and debt securities. This will be followed by a full
suite of interest rate derivatives and foreign exchange products.

The establishment of AusMarkets.com is in recognition of client
feedback and research that confirms that some client segments are
seeking a multi-contributor or aggregated portal in which to transact
and manage their treasury operations. By having a critical mass of
financial institutions represented, clients are afforded an efficient
price comparison and information platform which is better suited to
meet their online information and transaction needs.

The initial focus of AusMarkets.com will be the Australian
marketplace, although it is also intended to offer this platform to
clients and market participants outside Australia shortly thereafter.

While each participating bank has its own e-commerce strategic
initiatives, the establishment of AusMarkets.com is targeted at those
clients with multiple banking relationships that are seeking to
access their entire financial markets product range through one
central trading platform. The portal provides a more efficient
delivery channel of products and services than those offered by
single product/participant sites. Importantly, it also offers a deep
source of liquidity to clients through the participation of the major
trading banks and a heightened level of price transparency.

Preliminary discussions have been held with various regulatory
bodies.

For further information please contact: David Hornery on (02) 9227
1932 or visit the website at www.ausmarkets.com.au