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Customers demand bank account portability to aid switching

Written on:September 13, 2023
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Bank account portability…first on customers’ wish list

Owing to the plethora of banking scandals, customers now feel the want to switch their bank if they are allowed to retain their bank account numbers, a survey has found.

The survey, conducted by consumer watchdog ‘Which?’, questioned 2,057 adults between August 31 and September 2, revealed that around 63% of people were in favour of introduction of portable account numbers, while 59% showed more likelihood to move to other banks if they did not have to change their banking details.

76% people felt that facilitating this change would make the process easier. Around 55% of people confessed to have never switched their current account.

At an event hosted by ‘Which?’, the findings were revealed in front of banking fraternity which included representatives from Lloyds, RBS, Barclays, HSBC, Virgin Money and Metro Bank, along with members of the Treasury Select Committee and the British Bankers’ Association. The meeting was held to encourage bankers to introduce portable account numbers.

‘Which?’ said that portable account numbers would make life as easy for consumers as changing their mobile phone providers. The change would help remove the need for people to change existing direct debits and standing orders, leading to greater competition, better product delivery and improved customer service.

The introduction of portable account numbers would also enable changes to clearing service which would help smaller banks in starting up their businesses. It would also minimise the chances of the taxpayer having to bail out banks again, as the regulator can then shut down the bankrupt bank and shift the customer accounts to another bank.

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