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Sunday 13th of June 2010

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June 10, 2010

Almost a million UK adults without bank accounts

by Gill Montia

Story link: Almost a million UK adults without bank accounts

Nearly a million adults in the UK are living almost entirely in the cash economy because they don’t have even the most basic of bank accounts.

A new report from Consumer Focus claims some of the most vulnerable individuals in the country make up this group, and is demanding that the problem is addressed in any reforms to the banking sector.

The government-sponsored watchdog’s “On the Margins” report points out that those without bank accounts face increased living costs because they can’t use direct debits to pay household bills, or buy goods and services on the Internet.

In addition, they have difficulties accessing mainstream credit and increasingly, paid work.

Consumer focus would like to see Post Office banking services developed to help those without bank accounts, explaining: “Often this group will mistrust the banking sector … the Post Office is a trusted brand with as many branches as all of the UK banks and building societies combined.”

The organisation’s chief executive, Mike O’Connor, comments: “If the current reform agenda does not take proper account of those on the margins of our banking system, it will have failed those consumers who need the most help.”

 

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