New current accounts open up banking accessibility
As part of a review of the voluntary banking code, banks have agreed to develop basic bank accounts designed for the poor and those on social security
10:26 12 November 2004
As part of a review of the voluntary banking code, banks have agreed to develop basic bank accounts designed for the poor and those on social security.
Professor Elaine Kempson of Bristol University conducted the independent review of the code.
It included a number of suggestions which will be adopted by the banking sector by March 2005, including provisions for better access to basic accounts.
The move to basic accounts follows pressure from groups such as the Citizens' Advice Bureau (CAB) which said: "In our response to the 2002 banking code review, we highlighted that many CAB clients experienced extreme difficulties in trying to open a basic bank account."
Commenting on the 2004 review, Ian Mullen, chief executive of the British Bankers' Association, said: "Customers quite rightly expect the highest levels of service and professionalism from their financial services provider and they want transparency and openness too."
Among other recommendations made by Professor Kempson were for "health warnings" on credit card statements and a commitment to informing customers of possible delays in clearing funds.