HSBC: Crash Worry Fracas

28 January 2014

HSBC Rumours ahoy bounded around the financial world that HSBC may be heading towards a bit of a crash, after the bank refused to let their customers take out more than £3000. However calm down everyone, they just changed the rules and failed to tell, well, everyone.

Reports flooded in to BBC Radio 4’s Moneybox programme of branches demanding actual evidence of what the customer plans to use the money for, when they’ve requested amounts from £5000 upwards. With one listener in particular refused £7000, even when he said he was paying a loan back to his mum* (*planning to blow it all on drink, more like).

The bank has defended its actions and admitted it made a change to its policy in November without informing customers. They also admit they may not have communicated the rules properly to members of staff. Which is quite comforting news for everyone there.

In a copied and pasted statement, the bank said: "We ask our customers about the purpose of large cash withdrawals when they are unusual and out of keeping with the normal running of their account.

"Since last November, in some instances we may have also asked these customers to show us evidence of what the cash is required for. The reason being we have an obligation to protect our customers, and to minimise the opportunity for financial crime."

"However, following feedback, we are immediately updating guidance to our customer facing staff to reiterate that it is not mandatory for customers to provide documentary evidence for large cash withdrawals, and on its own, failure to show evidence is not a reason to refuse a withdrawal."

"We are writing to apologise to any customer who has been given incorrect information and inconvenienced."

Well that’s okay then. Perhaps some sort of ‘writing to customers’ situation could’ve prevented all this HYSTERIA.


  • Mr G.
    This is nothing new. Back in 2005 I withdrew £3000 for a car. Before the cashier would hand my money over she asked me what it was for. I told her that I was buying a car and she handed the money over. Still it is my money and I should be able to withdraw how much I want and when I want. I will admit that when I make a new card transaction for a couple of hundred pound or more, the bank immediately cancel the transaction, then call me and ask if I made the transaction and if I did then they allow it to go through, so at least the security is good.
  • HaydoS
    Remember the good old days, say early 1980's, when Banks actually respected their customers? When service was more important than profit? When banks gave you freebies, like money boxes etc., instead of outrageous fees? It's time banks remembered they need us, not vice-versa.

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