Santander confirms Royal Bank of Scotland branch offer
Spanish giant Santander has today confirmed a potential £1.8 billion for the 318 Royal Bank of Scotland branches which are up for auction. It is believed that Santander is the only firm bidder for the branches despite the fact that a number of parties came forward when the auction process began. The branches are being sold because of an EU ruling in relation to state aid for Royal Bank of Scotland when the company was on the verge of collapse.
Santander has been picking up UK assets for some time now having bought Abbey, Alliance & Leicester and the savings arm of Bradford & Bingley. If the Royal Bank of Scotland offer is successful, as seems likely, the company will have a 14% share of the UK mortgage market and 10% share of the retail savings market. In many ways Santander has been ahead of the game having changed a number of well-known UK brands to the "Santander" brand thereby escaping some of the growing consumer disdain aimed at the UK banking arena.
Many people expect further consolidation in the UK banking sector with the potential for retail banking and investment banking arms to be separated at companies such as Barclays bank.
JC Flowers attacks UK mutual sector
JC Flowers, the massive US private equity company, has set aside EUR1 billion to attack the UK mutual sector after agreeing a deal with Kent Reliance which will see the company inject around £50 million into the UK mutual society. It has also been revealed that JC Flowers is in talks regarding a potential EUR450 million investment in Spain's Banca Civica which is run in the same manner as UK mutu...Read More
HBOS reduces overdraft fee to just five pounds a day
As we covered in one of our earlier post, more and more banks in the UK are reducing their overdraft charges as we await the announcement of a legal challenge to historic overdraft fees. HBOS, via its subsidiary Halifax, is the latest such bank to reduce its charge to just five pounds a day for those making use of unauthorised overdrafts.
Previously Halifax had charge £35 for refu...
Barclays hints at Account Charges
Plans from one of the UK’s leading banks, Barclays, to start charging customers for the privilege of banking with them has sparked fury among customers. Sir David Walker, new boss of the bank after being made chairman in early August, said the plans to charge customer and get rid of free banking were ‘in principle’. This will no doubt come as a blow to many families, who have already had...Read More
RBS customers experience cash machine problems
Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has experienced cash machine problems which have left customers unable to draw out money. Natwest, which is owned by RBS, has also been affected by the issue. Millions of RBS and Natwest customers have been unable to access cash from ATM machines after technical problems. Cashpoints, online banking and telephone banking systems have crashed, leaving customers unable...Read More
Lloyds TSB confirms it will retain the Bank of Scotland and Halifax brands
As the potential merger of Lloyds TSB and HBOS continues to draw ever nearer the bank has today suggested that Lloyds TSB, Bank of Scotland and Halifax will remain as separate brand names throughout the group. There had been some concern that the Lloyds TSB name will be pushed to the fore at the expense of Halifax and Bank of Scotland but this does not appear to be the case.