Welcome to the final pick of the blogs for 2019. I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you all a lovely Christmas break and to say thanks for supporting the Networking and Information Sharing project throughout the year.
This month’s pick of the blogs is from FCA Insight. In today’s busy society many people may find time slipping away and forget to pay a bill that has fallen due, or losing track of spending. My bank sends me a text alert to remind me to pay my credit card, and it has saved me from a default fee at least once this year.
This article looks at the new rules from the FCA requiring banks to issue alerts when a customer enters into an unauthorised overdraft. The rule changes have been made following research into text alerts including an hour-by-hour analysis on how customers react to alerts sent via text message to their phones.
The article provides an overview into how “just in time” text alerts can be useful, why the FCA chose to make these text alerts opt-out rather than opt-in, and also has diagrams detailing the research findings showing how quickly people resolved their overdraft following a text alert and at what time of day. Fascinating.
Read the full article here: https://www.fca.org.uk/insight/paying-attention-or-paying-charges-its-all-timing
In other blogs:
Staying with the theme of overdrafts, if you haven’t had time to absorb the changes to overdrafts, check out Sara from Debt Camel’s blog on overdraft fees.
Sara explains what changes will be implemented and how this may affect customers. She quite rightly anticipates that overdraft charges will increase for the majority of people, and details which banks have already announced their revised charges.
The debt advice sector had hoped that a cap would be placed on charges that could be made by the banks, but the FCA were concerned about fettering choice and competition. They have therefore opted for a simpler charging system, intended to allow customers to compare banks and their charges. I share Sara’s scepticism about customers changing banks on the basis of overdraft charges, but we will see. Read more about the new changes here:
Every year some advisers will be contacted by local press to write about how to save money at Christmas, for headlines such as “10 steps to cutting the cost of Christmas.”
In a recent article Stepchange recognise these common messages about how Christmas is not about getting yourself into debt, but also looks at the influence and impact of consumerism and the role of social media in thwarting the message. Social media now plays a large part in influencing customers into believing the myth of the “perfect Christmas.” Stepchange have made their own Christmas list, and policies that reflect a more understanding and empathetic approach to people that have been swept up by the social media dream are right at the top. Wouldn’t that be nice…
Have you read any good blogs recently? Let us know in our discussion forum.
In other news
Did you know that each region has their own discussion forum? You can chat to colleagues from your local area, discuss money advice group arrangements or social policy issues that you are seeing. Check out your area forum below
More blogs next year.