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New Century Bank targets UK

US-based financial group New Century Bank has confirmed an application for a UK banking licence has been lodged with the Financial Services Authority (FSA). It is believed the company has around £200 million into invest this new venture which will be targeted at rural areas of the UK where many customers have become disgruntled by their treatment at the hands of the high street giants.

New Century Bank is well-known in the US and offers services such as mortgages, loans and personal accounts which it hopes to replicate in the UK. It is hoped the company will be able to fill a void in the UK loan marketplace which many of the largest UK banks have neglected. It should also inject further competition into the UK banking arena which has for many years been dominated by a small band of banks.

We await confirmation as to whether the application has been successful, although there are no reasons to suggest it won't be rubber stamped, at which point New Century Bank will join a growing list of foreign operations looking to make a play on the UK market. This will be music to the ears of the UK government, whoever that may be in due course, and should at least shave the influence of the UK's larger banks.

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