Free banking services may be withdrawn

Free banking facilities in the UK could end up being withdrawn if regulatory bodies continue to criticise banks, an industry body has warned.

Angela Knight, chief executive of the British Bankers’ Association (BBA) said banks in the UK provided many services, such as standing orders, for free in contrast to their European counterparts.

Speaking to the Today programme in response to allegations that banks are ripping off customers with penalty charges, she said that such charges were part of a “delicate” business model and that any additional regulation could be bad for customers.

“There are always consequences of change,” Ms Knight said. “If the regulators do just take a very narrow view and they start to try and change the business model then clearly there are going to be consequences.”

This morning’s bank charges debate was sparked by a record profits announcement from Barclays, which said it made more than £7 billion last year, up 35 per cent on 2005.

© Adfero Ltd

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