Well now, this week saw the bank chiefs receive a real grilling in London. Are we all feeling mildly curious to see the boot on the other foot? With many of us having been on the end of a bank branch manager grilling about overdrafts, etc over the years, it is ironic seeing their top bosses squirm under the spotlight currently on their own financial management.
This has hit the headlines at the same time as research results from a survey carried out by Money Dashboard amongst UK consumers showed that of the 1800+ initial respondents, 53% of UK consumers were more likely now to gain financial/ product information via the internet, with only 41% getting information from their bank. With all the adverse publicity it could be we may now see a further shift in this trend if bank trust is further eroded. Other sources of financial information such as Family 22% and Friends 18% are running roughly equal to (professional) Independent Financial Advice at 20%. It is possible that more people would prefer the IFA route if they could find a way to access it.
Furthermore, 70% of respondents were internet banking users - with 58% of these returning with great regularity, so the banks are clearly doing something right. Perhaps internet banking is creating a separation from the branch and underpins the trend away from using face to face meetings with bank managers. Financial management software will give users access to a wide variety of financial information, bringing their various internet banking accounts together, helping them with accurate budgeting, managing debts, teaching them how to save and providing a range of saving tips and wizards.
People are clearly not getting financial info from their branch for technical reasons, but the question that must now be asked is quite simply - Do you still trust your Bank Branch to give you advice that is in your favour? If you would like to "take the survey" you can help to answer this question.