First Direct to start charging for current accounts

My bank, First Direct, have announced today that they are going to start charging certain customers for their current accounts.

To paraphrase First Direct… ‘Provided you credit your Bank Account or Cheque Account with at least £1,500 each month (internal transfers from first direct accounts excluded), keep an average monthly balance in excess of £1,500 or have an additional product (a loan, mortgage, credit card, savings account, insurance) with first direct you will not incur our banking fee.’

That’s big of them! Guess what – HSBC have got our money, are investing it in God knows what and are not exactly paupers. Any pathetic public relations attempt to dress this up as beneficial to its customers will be worth reading and will certainly make good comedy.

Whilst I won’t be affected by the fee (because I have a savings account with them), this speaks volumes about the bank itself. I feel sorry for those who will be affected or are being coerced by stealth into taking up one of First Direct’s other services, and as such, to coin an old phrase, will be looking at taking my services elsewhere – ideally a bank with a social conscience.