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Savings accounts with branch access in decline

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Rachel Springall, Press Officer
Rachel Springall, Press Officer / Finance Expert T: 01603 476210 E: Email Rachel
29/01/2024

Savings accounts with branch access in decline

A growing proportion of easy access accounts do not offer branch access, according to the latest research by Moneyfactscompare.co.uk. As banks continue to close branches, accessibility to cash for those who prefer to manage their overall day-to-day banking needs in person is becoming increasingly scarce.

Savings accounts with branch access in decline

A growing proportion of easy access accounts do not offer branch access, according to the latest research by Moneyfactscompare.co.uk. As banks continue to close branches, accessibility to cash for those who prefer to manage their overall day-to-day banking needs in person is becoming increasingly scarce.

  • Moneyfacts’ analysis of the live easy access market reveals more than a third (40%) of accounts do not offer branch access. This has risen from 33% in the past five years, and is up from 29% a decade ago.
  • Easy access accounts that offer online access are on the rise. More than two thirds (69%) offer online access, up from 60% five years ago, and 54% a decade ago.
  • According to a recent survey from Yorkshire Building Society, over a fifth of UK consumers prefer in-branch service for their day-to-day banking needs, and over a quarter visit their local branch at least once a month.

 

  • Moneyfacts’ analysis of the live easy access market reveals more than a third (40%) of accounts do not offer branch access. This has risen from 33% in the past five years, and is up from 29% a decade ago.
  • Easy access accounts that offer online access are on the rise. More than two thirds (69%) offer online access, up from 60% five years ago, and 54% a decade ago.
  • According to a recent survey from Yorkshire Building Society, over a fifth of UK consumers prefer in-branch service for their day-to-day banking needs, and over a quarter visit their local branch at least once a month.

 

Savings market analysis

Easy access accounts

Jan-14

Jan-19

Jan-23

Now

% of deals without branch access

29%

33%

37%

40%

Top rate from one of the biggest high street banks which offers branch access £10,000 gross

Halifax - 1.00%

TSB - 0.50%

HSBC - 2.96%

Halifax - 4.12%

% of deals with internet access

54%

60%

60%

69%

Top rate in the market overall which has internet access £10,000 gross

Coventry BS - 1.60%

Virgin Money - 1.50%

HSBC - 2.96%

Ulster Bank - 5.20%

Top rate deals selected are those available to new customers, or those that require a linked account without funding. Data shown is based on the channel of access, not account opening. Deals may have more than one specific access method. Source: Moneyfactscompare.co.uk

 

Savings market analysis

Easy access accounts

Jan-14

Jan-19

Jan-23

Now

% of deals without branch access

29%

33%

37%

40%

Top rate from one of the biggest high street banks which offers branch access £10,000 gross

Halifax - 1.00%

TSB - 0.50%

HSBC - 2.96%

Halifax - 4.12%

% of deals with internet access

54%

60%

60%

69%

Top rate in the market overall which has internet access £10,000 gross

Coventry BS - 1.60%

Virgin Money - 1.50%

HSBC - 2.96%

Ulster Bank - 5.20%

Top rate deals selected are those available to new customers, or those that require a linked account without funding. Data shown is based on the channel of access, not account opening. Deals may have more than one specific access method. Source: Moneyfactscompare.co.uk

 

Rachel Springall, Finance Expert at Moneyfactscompare.co.uk, said:

“Savers looking for an easy access account will find most options offer online access, but there is a decline in accounts that allow branch access. This has been a growing trend over the years, and in fact the percentage of easy access accounts that do not offer branch access has now grown to 40%, up from 29% a decade ago. Those savers who prefer to manage their account in branch and save their money with one of the biggest high street banks will be sacrificing the interest they earn on their savings. Indeed, savers could be earning as little as 1%, or on average 3%, but in fact they could earn around 5% on the top easy access accounts. Older savers might prefer to manage their finances in branch for accessibility reasons, but it is clear to see how they could be missing out on a better return if they are not able to manage an account online. A saver earning just 1% for a year on a £20,000 pot would take home £200 in interest, whereas earning 5% would result in £1,000.

“Consumers may wish to have the option of managing their finances in branches, but it will be more time-efficient for savers to shop around online to find the best interest rates. A recent survey from Yorkshire Building Society highlighted demand for branches; it found a quarter of consumers still visit their local branch at least once a month and that a fifth of those questioned preferred an in-branch service for their day-to-day banking needs. However, there are savings providers who do not offer any branch access, such as some challenger banks who prefer to digitise their offers to streamline retail banking, and in fact a few institutions only offer online access.

“Aside from savers who prefer to manage their account in branch, consumers will no doubt have noticed concerns raised about the overall accessibility to cash, which is under scrutiny by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The FCA’s new rules will not be finalised until later this year, but it is worth noting they do not have the power to prevent bank branches from closing. Consumers concerned about the loss of their local branches would be wise to speak to their provider to discuss other locations or consider moving their accounts to an alternative brand that can cater for their day-to-day banking needs.”

Rachel Springall, Finance Expert at Moneyfactscompare.co.uk, said:

“Savers looking for an easy access account will find most options offer online access, but there is a decline in accounts that allow branch access. This has been a growing trend over the years, and in fact the percentage of easy access accounts that do not offer branch access has now grown to 40%, up from 29% a decade ago. Those savers who prefer to manage their account in branch and save their money with one of the biggest high street banks will be sacrificing the interest they earn on their savings. Indeed, savers could be earning as little as 1%, or on average 3%, but in fact they could earn around 5% on the top easy access accounts. Older savers might prefer to manage their finances in branch for accessibility reasons, but it is clear to see how they could be missing out on a better return if they are not able to manage an account online. A saver earning just 1% for a year on a £20,000 pot would take home £200 in interest, whereas earning 5% would result in £1,000.

“Consumers may wish to have the option of managing their finances in branches, but it will be more time-efficient for savers to shop around online to find the best interest rates. A recent survey from Yorkshire Building Society highlighted demand for branches; it found a quarter of consumers still visit their local branch at least once a month and that a fifth of those questioned preferred an in-branch service for their day-to-day banking needs. However, there are savings providers who do not offer any branch access, such as some challenger banks who prefer to digitise their offers to streamline retail banking, and in fact a few institutions only offer online access.

“Aside from savers who prefer to manage their account in branch, consumers will no doubt have noticed concerns raised about the overall accessibility to cash, which is under scrutiny by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The FCA’s new rules will not be finalised until later this year, but it is worth noting they do not have the power to prevent bank branches from closing. Consumers concerned about the loss of their local branches would be wise to speak to their provider to discuss other locations or consider moving their accounts to an alternative brand that can cater for their day-to-day banking needs.”

Notes to editors

Pioneering financial comparison technology for over 35 years.

Moneyfacts Group plc is the UK’s leading provider of retail financial product data. Used by virtually every bank and building society in the UK, and supplied to the Bank of England, Financial Conduct Authority, Financial Ombudsman Service, HM Treasury, Prudential Regulatory Authority and UK Finance.

Our expert research team monitors the thousands of mortgages, savings, credit card, personal loan, business banking, life, pension and investment products in the UK.

Moneyfactscompare.co.uk is the financial product price comparison site, launched as Moneyfacts.co.uk in 2000 and rebranded to Moneyfactscompare.co.uk in 2023, which helps consumers compare thousands of financial products, including credit cards, savings, mortgages and many more. Unlike other comparison sites, Moneyfactscompare.co.uk shows whole of market data regardless of commercial bias, showing consumers a true picture of the best products based on the criteria they select.

We hope you find this press release insightful. We would appreciate a link back to Moneyfactscompare.co.uk if you decide to source this information.

For more information about us please see our key facts.

Broadcast

Our broadcast suite enables our finance experts to appear in-vision for television, and we regularly comment live on national and regional radio.

To arrange an interview for radio or television, please contact our press department. We have an in-house broadcast room.

 

Notes to editors

Pioneering financial comparison technology for over 35 years.

Moneyfacts Group plc is the UK’s leading provider of retail financial product data. Used by virtually every bank and building society in the UK, and supplied to the Bank of England, Financial Conduct Authority, Financial Ombudsman Service, HM Treasury, Prudential Regulatory Authority and UK Finance.

Our expert research team monitors the thousands of mortgages, savings, credit card, personal loan, business banking, life, pension and investment products in the UK.

Moneyfactscompare.co.uk is the financial product price comparison site, launched as Moneyfacts.co.uk in 2000 and rebranded to Moneyfactscompare.co.uk in 2023, which helps consumers compare thousands of financial products, including credit cards, savings, mortgages and many more. Unlike other comparison sites, Moneyfactscompare.co.uk shows whole of market data regardless of commercial bias, showing consumers a true picture of the best products based on the criteria they select.

We hope you find this press release insightful. We would appreciate a link back to Moneyfactscompare.co.uk if you decide to source this information.

For more information about us please see our key facts.

Broadcast

Our broadcast suite enables our finance experts to appear in-vision for television, and we regularly comment live on national and regional radio.

To arrange an interview for radio or television, please contact our press department. We have an in-house broadcast room.

 

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James Hyde Press & PR Manager
Rachel Springall Press Officer / Finance Expert
Caitlyn Eastell Apprentice Press & PR Assistant