A quarter of Britons have as little as £1 in their bank account by pay day – and HALF have NO savings at all
A quarter of Britons have as little as £1 in their bank account by pay day, alarming new research reveals.
And half of us have been stung by hefty bank charges – sometimes as high as £10 a day – after going overdrawn without permission in the last 12 months.
For some, this amounted to a staggering £750 in charges over the year.
Terrible financial news in the Mail, as they reveal that one in four people in the country have less than £1 in the bank, and no savings at all. That the article goes on to highlight the amount of money that banks make from overdraft fees only slightly undermines the neutrality of this finding, given the source of the press release which announced this ‘research’:
The new research was commissioned by U Account – a new current account where customers can never go overdrawn.
Is this a genuine tale of financial woe in modern Britain? Or just a bank highlighting their unique selling point via some specifically-designed-and-sculpted PR survey data? Unfortunately, given the proliferation of Bad PR stories based on spurious surveys, there’s no way of being sure. The evangelical tone of the spokesperson quoted in the article does nothing to assuage concerns, either:
Alex Letts, founder of U, said: ‘The dirtiest secret in the UK banking sector is with the way people are charged
‘Banks can only provide a free service for the minority of wealthier customers because of the fees and penalty charges paid by millions of normal households battling with incredibly tight budgets. Those costs are mainly for unplanned and exceeded overdrafts.
‘We are disrupting that old banking order by saying ‘relying on people’s misfortune, debt or mistakes is no longer good enough’.
So, U offer a revolutionary bank account that doesn’t survive on charging fees for services? Well that’s good to hear at least no wait a minute what is this in the very next sentence?
Like a traditional high street bank, the U Account lets customers pay in, make payments with a contactless MasterCard debit card, pay their bills through direct debits or standing order and make same day payments.
But unlike these banks, which make money by charging hefty fees for unauthorised overdrafts, U customers pay a nominal fee —never more than £10 a month — for the services they use.
Not only does U charge fees just like any other bank account, but the tone of the article’s conclusion, which is not a continuation of a quote and therefore has no legitimate excuse for the brand evangelicism, shows that this whole story is nothing but a transparent PR puff-piece.