Banking on access

Think tank: Social Market Foundation

Author(s): Scott Corfe; Richard Hyde; Bill Anderson-Samways

June 22, 2022

This report from UK think tank the Social Market Foundation looks at ensuring access to banking in a digital age.

This report from Social Market Foundation think-tank examines the future of banking and accessing it in a digital age.

Nearly 40% of UK current account holders are using online banking more since the pandemic. But 7% of the population still cannot access digital banking at all, and that’s unlikely to change soon. How do we deal with such a balance of opportunities and risks? Our latest report presents some innovative solutions. Our recommendations for ensuring that all can benefit from this evolving banking landscape, and that no one is left behind:

  1. Government should establish a “digital economy preparedness” commission, to ensure the UK in general and consumers in particular, are appropriately prepared to navigate the technological changes
  2. Government should convene a taskforce with the banking industry, relevant UK authorities, and civil society groups to urgently review the banking requirements of the UK population.
  3. Public sector real estate, including libraries and council buildings, should be used to house “banking hubs”.
  4. Policymakers must ensure any shift away from free-if-in-credit (FIIC) banking, or the continuation of FIIC, provides value-for-money for consumers.