Deathwatch: Free banking?
According to a report from PriceWaterHouseCooper, they think that free banking could be dead within 10 years of you reading these words. They think that banks will see free banking as 'unsustainable' with customers being asked to pay subscriptions of £10 per month instead.
If you're thinking of refusing to pay the charges, then it is assumed that banks would then place restrictions on withdrawals and using branches, and the like.
Steve Davies, the retail banking leader at PwC, thinks that paying for current accounts as standard could get rid of the control the big banks currently have on the market in the UK and bring about a more transparent and better service.
He says: "UK current accounts are not free at all and are paid for through overdraft charges, penalty fees and uncompetitive or zero rates of interest. The free banking model stifles innovation and competition."
"It requires new challenger banks to achieve scale very quickly if they are to survive and it fails to reward banks that come up with new ideas as costs cannot be recovered," he added
And the Competition & Markets Authority have said that most people can't be bothered to change banks because it is too difficult to work out which is offering the best deals.
Andrew Bailey, head of the Bank of England's Prudential Regulation Authority, is on record as referring to free banking as a 'dangerous myth'.