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

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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