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Wednesday, 26 September 2007

Trust after Northern Rock

Jo Parker

The ‘Financial Services Trust Index’* commissioned by us, over the weekend shows that less than half (46%) of the general public considers high street banks to be trustworthy.

After days of customers struggling to withdraw funds via Northern Rock’s website, faith in direct and online banks is also low, with only one in four (25%) of those questioned declaring confidence in the Internet banking system.

The current volatility in the UK’s financial sector has also left levels of trust low across the industry, with credit card companies (22%), insurance companies (20%) and investment companies (7%) all scoring low. Building societies are shown to be the most trusted product provider, with a score of 48%.

The Northern Rock situation has contributed to the low levels of trust that the British public has in companies that look after their money.

But, with the UK having one of the most regulated financial services markets in the world, our industry offers customers a great deal of choice and flexibility. What we could see is an increase in consumers visiting firms with a reputation for being open and transparent and treating their customers fairly such as Lloyds TSB and Britannia Building Society to name but two.

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