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Is my money safe in banks?

At the present moment many Banks have exposure to Ireland, Portugal, Greece and Spain which means that they could have problems building up for the future. If any Banks go bust – how safe is your money?

An interesting fact for you: 

Approximately 2 million people in the UK have savings with the Post Office, but did you know that these deposits are not guaranteed by the UK Financial Services Compensation Scheme.  They are in fact guaranteed by the Irish government.  But don’t panic the good news is that the Bank of Ireland (who operates the Post Office accounts) has begun the process of transferring its Post Office depositor base to fully fall under the UK regulator and compensation scheme.

This illustrated why savers like you need to be aware of the risks and make appropriate contingency plans.

UK Savers Emergency Plan:

  • Ensure that you have at least 2 current accounts across different banking groups
  • That you have procedures in place to ensure that you can act fast to initiate transfer of funds from instant access savings accounts, especially if your total funds with a particular banking group exceeds £50k / £83k (1st Jan 2011).The best strategy is to limit exposure per banking group to the limit of £50k
  • Do not have ANY savings are fixed deposit exposure to banks that do not fall under the UK Financials Services Compensation Scheme
  • Limit exposure to PIIGS banks, that is Greece, Ireland, Spain, Portugal and Italy as these are at the most risk of going bust thus triggering a lengthy process of Savers having to wait for compensation.

The following list represents Britians’ largest deposit taking banking groups and the banks that fall under each.

Banking groups have multiple licences as a consequence of mergers and takeovers, and may be in the process of merging licences so for ultimate safety one should remain focused on banking groups.

LLOYDS BANKING GROUP

  • Lloyds TSB Bank
  • AA Savings
  • Bank of Scotland / HBOS
  • Birmingham Midshires
  • Capital Bank
  • Cheltenham & Gloucester Savings
  • Halifax
  • Intelligent Finance
  • Saga

SANTANDER GROUP

  • Santander bank
  • Abbey National
  • Asda Savings
  • Alliance and Leicester
  • Bradford and Bingley
  • Cahoot
  • Moneyback
  • Honycomb

NATIONWIDE BUILDING SOCIETY

  • Nationwide Building Society
  • Cheshire Building Society
  • Derbyshire Building Society
  • Dunfermline Building Society

BARCLAYS GROUP

  • Barclays Bank
  • Standardlife Bank

HSBC GROUP

  • HSBC Bank
  • First Direct
  • Marks and Spencer Financial

ALLIED IRISH GROUP

  • Allied Irish Bank
  • First Trust

CITI GROUP

  • Citibank
  • Egg

 CO-OPERATIVE GROUP

  • Co-operative Bank
  • Britannia
  • Smile
  • Unity Trust Bank

RBS Group

  • Royal Bank of Scotland
  • Nat West Bank
  • Direct Line Savings
  • Lombard
  • The One Account
  • Drummonds
  • Ulster Bank

Additional comments

Foreign Banks covered under the UK FSCS Scheme

  • ICICI (India),
  • First Save (Nigeria)

Small business are covered by the FSCS on the basis of 2 of following 3 conditions – up to a turnover of 6.5 million, less than 50 employees, balance sheet total not more than £3.26 million

 Banks not under the UK FSCS.

  •  Post Office (as detailed above)
  • ING Direct
  • Tridos – Dutch
  • Anglo Irish,
  • Bank of Ireland – Ireland

Don’t delay! Act today to form a quick personal savings protection contingency plan, otherwise you may wake up one day to find yourselves locked out of your funds Iceland style!

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