July 26 2014 Latest news:


Adam Aiken

ICB report spells good news for consumers

At last, there could be some good news for bank customers.

The big lines that emerged from the Independent Commission on Banking’s report concerned the ringfencing of the banks’ retail operations, and the call for extra funds they would need to hold as a buffer in case of a future financial crisis.

But there were also a number of other ideas put forward that should help improve our overall high-street banking experience.

One of these is the ICB’s desire to open up the market to greater competition.

The likes of NBNK have been looking to get a piece of the action for some time, and the commission’s report has confirmed its view that Lloyds Banking Group should sell more of more of its branches than the 632 it is already planning to dispose of.

The ICB wants a new player on the high street to have a market share of at least 6pc of the current-account market, taking the number of major retail banks to six.

On the face of it, having six major players instead of five might not seem like a huge leap forward...

Peter Sharkey

Years of hurt set to continue for savers

Is it really seven years? The credit crunch had hardly been heard of seven years ago, let alone identified as an impending financial disaster that would change the world and obliterate great swaths of individual, governmental and corporate wealth.

In June 2007, savers and investors could still bask in the fading warmth of a seemingly endless sunshine which, economically-speaking, had shone since the century’s start, blissfully unaware of what was to come...

Robert Clarke

Advice is better when face to face

Technology, of the type with which we’ve become remarkably familiar over the past two decades, can be absolutely wonderful when it works, although it becomes a nightmare when it doesn’t...