FCA publishes proposals to help customers compare current account providers 

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has today published a consultation on objective service quality metrics for current account providers. The consultation follows from the Competition and Markets Authority’s (CMA) recent investigation of Retail Banking. One of the areas of concern in that investigation was a limited comparability between current account providers for customers. As a result, the CMA requested from FCA to ask providers to publish consistent, objective metrics of different aspects of their performance to help customers choose the right provider for their needs.

In the present consultation the FCA has put together a short-list of such metrics. Current accounts have a number of different aspects of service quality that are likely to be important to customers. The metrics proposed by the FCA cover various areas of quality and include:

  • What is required and how long it takes to open an account;
  • When services are available to customers, especially out of hours;
  • The extent to which the provider experiences major service failures (such as unplanned mobile banking failures), and
  • The time taken to perform functions like replacing a card or providing power of attorney

Paul Cullum, Manager in Frontier’s Financial Service team said “Creating objective and consistent metrics could help deliver a step change in how customers choose their current account provider. Most customers don’t think there are differences between providers; objective metrics can help open their eyes to real differences. 

Frontier advises Lloyds Banking Group on regulatory strategy, including throughout the CMA investigation and the development of the service metrics.

For more information, please contact Saskia Nett on s.nett@frontier-economics.com, or call +44 (0)20 7031 7000.

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