The idea of a free bank account seems to be just a myth, as the OFT release figures which show that the average customer is paying £152 to their bank account provider every year.
Annually, banks make £2.5 million from overdraft charges due to customers who have ‘insufficient funds’ in their current accounts, many of which are put down to easily made ‘customers mistakes’. This extra debt to your income has led the OFT (Office of Fair Trading) to challenge the banking industry to enforce stricter regulations and competition investigation.
Further findings included that poorer customers were subsidising the accounts of richer customers through the extra charges, which could lead many to seek additional help to manage debt as the credit crunch reduces the amount of disposable income available. A fifth of all customers were in the dark about bank charges until they had been incurred.