Cash savings market study

Published: 31/10/2013   Last Modified : 31/10/2013
82% of adults in the UK have a savings account and household cash holdings amount to £1.2 trillion. In 2012, more than six million adults opened a new savings account.

We are conducting a study into cash savings to see whether competition in this market is working well for consumers. Our study will examine competition in the market and any obstacles to consumers switching their savings between accounts, including the information available to them.

We will look at:

  • cash savings accounts for UK consumers, focusing on household savings
  • products that may be linked to providing a cash savings account
  • all providers in the market, whether or not we regulate them

We will look at consumer behaviour, including:

  • which consumers switch accounts and how often
  • why there appear to be low switching rates, including consumer inertia, actual and perceived switching costs, and benefits from switching
  • whether the information available to new and existing customers allows them to make informed choices
  • how complex products are and how well consumers understand the products

We will also examine supplier conduct, including:

  • the number and variety of accounts available
  • the terms of those accounts, including the interest rates offered and any eligibility requirements
  • the channels through which accounts are sold (for example, in branch, online, by telephone)
  • the information suppliers provide to their existing and potential customers.

For more information on what this study will cover and our procedure, see our terms of reference and how we carry out market studies.

Next steps

We expect to publish a statement of our preliminary findings in spring 2014 and publish our final report in autumn 2014.

We will engage with market participants, consumer bodies and other interested parties through interviews, roundtables, surveys and information requests over the coming months.

We would also like your views or evidence on the matters covered by the study. We are particularly interested in whether competition in the household cash savings market is working in the interests of consumers. If not, what are the main obstacles?

Send us your comments to cashsavings@fca.org.uk by 6 December 2013, or in writing to:

Cash savings market study team
Competition Department
Policy, Risk and Research Division
Financial Conduct Authority
25 The North Colonnade
Canary Wharf
London 
E14 5HS

We will not be able to address individual complaints about products or services you have received. If you have an individual complaint that has not been satisfactorily resolved with your provider, please contact the Financial Ombudsman Service.

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