IanCP - 10:46 pm on Feb 22, 2013 (gmt 0)
Out of interest, I checked back through last year for "payment issued" dates. The great majority were all 25th [OZ time], two were 27th and December was 21st.
All were MIB before month end. I don't know the experience of other Australians.
Certainly our payments are not arriving earlier.
Perhaps the US banking system has had some improvements made in recent months?