Switching banks should be easier, says report
Post by Kelly Swift
on 12 April 2011 in Family & Finance
People should be able to switch their banks more quickly and
easily, the Independent Banking Commission (IBC) has said.
The banking crisis of recent years has led to competition in
the sector being “seriously weakened”, the Commission has concluded in its
interim report, with the leading player in the sector now having about 30 per
cent of all the UK’s current accounts.
“Increased willingness to switch would put greater pressure
on banks to offer good products and services,” the IBC believes.
Just as is now possible with mobile phones, it says that
people should be able to keep their account numbers when they transfer to
another bank, thus greatly simplifying the process of transferring direct debits
and standing orders.
While there should be no technical obstacles to such a step,
the IBC says that it could take a couple of years to introduce.
The Commission also calls on banks to be more transparent
over their charges, and show more clearly the rates of interest which are paid
on in-credit balances, which would again allow customers to compare these
figures more readily.