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Clare Burnett

Member Article

Difficult year for Yorkshire Building Society after fines and ‘frustrating’ lack of competition

Yorkshire Building Society has reported that despite fines and a “frustrating” marketplace, they have hit a pre-tax profit of £188.2 million.

This was much better than expected, though less than the £199.3 million in pretax profit that was hit last year.

Chris Pilling, Yorkshire Building Society Group’s chief executive, said: “I am delighted to report another set of strong financial results for the Group.

“We must acknowledge that, as well as delivering excellent products and service in 2014, we were fined twice by our regulator for previously letting customers down.

“We have apologised for our errors, taken action to fix those problems swiftly and decisively and reimbursed those affected, which demonstrates our absolute commitment to fair outcomes for customers.

“It is our customer-focussed approach that offers a real difference to consumers in a more competitive and diverse financial services market.

“However, we are frustrated that despite broad consensus on encouraging challenger institutions, there is little evidence of meaningful progress.

“The ongoing reviews into the current account market represent a unique opportunity to overcome the big banks’ self-interested resistance to change.

“The existing current account switching service has failed to tackle the dominance of the big banks and raise the quality of the current account market. The banks’ self-interested opposition to greater reform resulted in a seven-day switching service and since its introduction we believe only 3% [6] of accounts have been switched.

“Switching your current account provider should be as easy as downloading an app to your phone. We urge the FCA and the new Payments Regulator to make this a top priority and commit within the next year to implementing full current account portability. Only then will consumers be able to benefit from a truly diverse financial services sector.”

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Clare Burnett .

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