Is George Osborne about to hit the UK banking industry?
Many believe that George Osborne will use his Mansion House speech this evening to launch a number of new initiatives aimed at the UK banking arena. He will warn them that they need to pay for the damage which "they inflicted" on the UK economy and indeed there will be talk of new banking taxes and a banking levy discussed.
It is also believed that many Liberal Democrat politicians are pushing George Osborne to instigate an investigation into integrated banking arrangements such as Barclays Bank, which operate both commercial banking activities and investment banking operations. Some of the more radical moves discussed include splitting commercial banking and investment banking into two separate entities thereby reducing the risk to an overall company from any one of these operations. This is not something which will go down well in the City where the likes of Barclays Bank, one of the integrated banking giants, has operated relatively successfully for many years.
Even though it may seem like a knee-jerk reaction to a once-in-a-lifetime event, i.e. the credit crunch, the UK banking arena could be about to change forever with many people concerned that the financial industry has become too powerful and too influential.
NatWest Customers affected by another System failure
Customers of Natwest, the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and Ulster Bank have been hot by another system failure which left them without access to their money. Online and telephone banking systems were affected as well as customers’ ability to withdraw cash and make payments using their cards. This comes less than a year after a more major failure in NatWest banking systems, which led to a wide...Read More
MPs to probe banking practices
An influential group of MPs is to investigate claims the country's banking sector is overcharging consumers. The Treasury committee plans to probe competition in the industry as well as the perceived end of 'free' banking. Last year First Direct became the first bank to announced fees for its current accounts. There have been suggestions that banks are looking to new ways to charge customers to co...Read More
Citigroup looking to offload Egg
US financial giant Citigroup is reported to be looking for buyers for its Egg Internet banking operation which was acquired back in 2007 for over £500 million. The operation, which was originally part of the Prudential Group, has been hit by the difficult trading climate in the UK and posted a loss of £106 million in the six months to June 2009. However, it is the underlying financial strength o...Read More
Leeds building society announces record savings
At a time when the UK banking sector, and the building society sector especially, is under pressure, today saw the Leeds building society announce record savings and more than 71,000 new customers over the year. This now takes the building society's membership number to 680,000 with savings now standing at £6.8 billion, an increase of £225 million over the period in question. Profits at the buil...Read More
Financial Services Compensation Scheme pays out £21 billion
It has been revealed that the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) has paid out an incredible £21 billion in the first six months of 2009. When you consider the scheme has only paid out £1 billion in the seven years prior to the current financial crisis it puts into perspective the seriousness of the collapse in the UK financial system.
The vast majority of the claims re...