Hate for banks does not translate into love for fintech

By David Tuckwell on Wednesday 24 May 2017

Alternative LendingSavings and Investment

Transferwise has published a major study on attitudes to banks and fintech

Study finds disaffection with banks does not equate to a willingness to switch over to fintech

It is said that the British are more likely to change their wife than change their bank. But is it only the British?

According to a new study by Transferwise, savers globally “are in long-term relationships with their banks”, with 70 percent of those polled saying they’d been with their current bank for more than five years. The Dutch were particularly loyal, with 80 percent having stayed with their banks for five years or more.

Savers’ fierce loyalty comes despite the fact that 50 percent of global respondents believe their bank puts profits over customer satisfaction, and only 15 percent believed their bank offered a fair deal. 

“The overall picture is one of disillusionment among consumers,” the report concluded. 

“People across the world have come to expect the worst from banks; they believe that the banks’ only motivation is profit with no thought for customers. While people may trust banks with their money, they don’t trust them to do the right thing.”

Examining what opportunities for fintech companies may fall out of this, the researchers found that disaffection with traditional banking did not translate into support for fintech. 

Only in South Korea and Brazil did the majority of respondents see themselves making the switch to tech companies in the next five years. In some countries, such as Japan and Singapore, fewer than 20 percent saw themselves making the move. 

Answering why savers were begrudgingly loyal to banks, the research found that it was that banks were believed to be more tightly regulated and safer than tech alternatives. 

Sign up for our newsletters

Your daily 7am download of all things alternative finance and fintech.

Fintech and alternative finance headlines with an exclusive Editor's Note each week. Delivered Monday at midday.

AltFi's new weekly US newsletter breaking down the ins and outs of America's burgeoning fintech sector. Delivered Monday 9am EST/ 6am PST.