Wealth Design News

An inquiry into consumers' access to financial services has been launched by MPs amid concerns some vulnerable customers are finding it increasingly difficult to access the supports and services that they need. The Treasury Committee will scrutinise whether certain groups of people are excluded from obtaining a basic level of service from providers. It will also examine whether vulnerable consumers pay more for financial services products. This is in the face of new data that shows that just a third of the UK’s bank branch network remains compared with three decades ago, meaning people have further to go to access basic financial services. There were 20,583 bank branches in 1988 but today, there are just 7,586, according to research by campaign group Which? This means 19% of the population now have to travel more than 3km to their nearest branch while one in 10 have to travel more than 5km.