ANZ says Gonski to take over as chairman

SYDNEY, April 30 Wed Apr 30, 2014 2:47am EDT

SYDNEY, April 30 (Reuters) - David Gonski will take over as chairman of Australia and New Zealand Banking Group from retiring John Morschel, effective May 1, the bank said in a statement.

Gonski, who has been working closely with Morschel to enable a "smooth transition", served as a director at Australia's third-biggest bank for five years from 2002.

Gonski was on the committee that appointed CEO Mike Smith, with a mandate to chart out an Asia-focused strategy for the bank.

That strategy has helped it grow the proportion of earnings it gets outside Australia, while its rivals focus on cost cuts.

ANZ will post half-yearly results on Thursday. It is expected to post a 5 percent rise in net profit, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. It sees bad loan provisions falling about 10 percent in the year to September 2014.

(Reporting by Swati Pandey; Editing by Stephen Coates)