Current account switching – high street rivals benefit from increase in Santander 123 current account monthly fee

  • Santander net new switcher figures fall off a cliff  in Q4 2015 – could explain the introduction of the new Santander 123 lite current account
  • Halifax, Nationwide and TSB all benefit with upsurge in new accounts

Andrew Hagger of Moneycomms.co.uk comments on the latest participant current account switching data for the final quarter of 2015.

Although the increase in the Santander 123 current account fee from £2 per month to £5 per month didn’t take effect until 11th January 2016, details of the intended price hike first came to light on 14th September 2015 and it appears to have had a dramatic impact on the net number of new accounts opened.

The spread sheet belo shows the net switching figures for the banks for each quarter over the last two years.

Over the first seven quarters (from the start of 2014) Santander averaged a net 52,504 new customers per quarter however for the final quarter of 2015 this figure slumped to a net influx of just 3,592 new switches.

Whilst the Santander figures nosedived other brands benefited with Halifax (31,181 net new customers), Nationwide (26,150) and TSB (9,604) showing a marked uplift in the final three months of 2015.

Whether the Santander numbers will show a similar slowdown for 2016 we will have to wait for the official figures to be released, however the launch of a 123 lite current account from Santander (announced today 19/7 with £1 monthly fee and no credit interest) makes me wonder whether the bank realised that it needed an alternative product for those with a smaller credit balance where the credit interest is currently being severely eroded by the higher £5 monthly fee.

 

Current Account Switching Net Movement – Q1 2014 to Q4 2015
Brand Q1 2014 Q2 2014 Q3 2014 Q4 2014 Q1 2015 Q2 2015 Q3 2015 Q4 2015 Net Total – last 2 years
Santander 37,316 59,922 43,312 45,633 64,203 66,145 51,002 3,592 371125
Halifax 41,558 15,125 53,624 40,094 32,533 34,363 11,177 31,181 259655
Nationwide Building Society 11,680 14,860 6,608 4,157 4,012 2,356 15,192 26,150 85015
Tesco Bank 0 0 2,467 2,017 378 667 623 301 6453
TSB 0 0 -4150 -2697 -1,878 -2,729 3,380 9,604 1530
Low volume recipients 191 190 -25 -9 -8 31 157 148 675
Danske Bank -365 -369 -506 -440 -587 -683 -466 -477 -3893
Bank of Ireland 528 -487 -711 -529 -621 -535 -353 -330 -4094
AIB Group (UK) plc -835 -797 -724 -1002 -724 -771 -701 -779 -6333
Bank of Scotland -85 -303 -568 -797 -2,505 -1,745 -1,245 -1,179 -8427
Ulster Bank -1,535 -1,335 -1,430 -1,362 -1,601 -1,428 -1,365 -1,299 -11355
Clydesdale Bank -6,871 -7,838 -8,191 -4,829 7,167 -3,898 -3,291 1,770 -25981
Co-operative Bank -7,852 -19,103 -8,994 -6,233 -8,467 -6,246 -4,952 -6,115 -67962
HSBC -15,429 -11,133 -10,647 -7,744 -13,529 -13,403 -8,683 -1,982 -82550
RBS -9,971 -8,523 -9,634 -11,293 -13,529 -15,700 -11,484 -11,430 -91564
Lloyds Bank -15,202 -6,316 -10,402 -13,199 -15,314 -15,353 -10,198 -11,015 -96999
NatWest -18,258 -14,868 -21,743 -16,171 -21,544 -16,279 -15,788 -13,928 -138579
Barclays -16,467 -22,119 -31,331 -28,483 -30,582 -27,116 -25,577 -27,064 -208739
Amalgamation of quarterly data (Payments council/BACS) by Moneycomms.co.uk 19.07.2016

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