The ASC Blog

Sale of Lloyds and RBS branches - has anyone asked the clients?

Published 08/03/2012 00:00:00

You may know that both Lloyds Bank and RBS have been forced to sell several hundred branches. That was decided by the Government and the European Commission. I am not getting involved in the political discussion but I have a question. Has anybody asked the clients whether they want to be transferred? The reason why this is an important question is because any transfer from one bank to another is quite a troublesome affair. It is difficult enough for personal bank accounts. However, what about business accounts? What about businesses with substantial standing order or direct debit income? I will not be convinced that any transfer will be easy and it will thus involve a lot of cost and effort for individual businesses…and who will compensate for the additional expense?

So what appears to be a “reasonable” political decision (again I am not prepared to enter the political debate) will create additional red tape for individual businesses. I understand that the total number of branches involved is 932 and that means that the total number of customer affected is over 7 million. Add the wasted time and effort from the individual businesses – remember there is no evidence that the transfer of the branch will be of benefit to the individual account/business - and you will see then that this is a serious issue. A unilateral decision has been made but I suspect that many businesses would not wish to change their bank accounts just because the Government and European Commission have decided that this is a good idea.

What is your opinion?

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