Jenny Ross, Which? Money Editor, said:
“With banks continuing to close branches at a rapid pace, it’s disappointing that the FCA has found that some banks have fallen short of its expectations in how they assess how closures will affect their customers and the alternative services they may require. It is therefore right that the FCA is seeking to clarify its guidance about what banks should do when they look to close a branch.
“While digital payment methods are growing in popularity, there remains a significant minority who still rely on cash for everyday essentials and to help keep track of their spending amid the soaring cost of living, and they must be protected.
“A full consideration of a local community’s cash needs, taking account of a wide range of factors, including geographic distances and population density, must be in place before bank branches or ATMs are allowed to close. The forthcoming legislation to protect access to cash announced in the Queen’s Speech should strengthen the FCA’s powers to ensure that it can hold banks to account.”