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Starling Bank tops the tables for current account switching

Starling’s rival Monzo followed in second place and fellow challenger Triodos Bank followed in fifth place

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Anne Boden’sStarling Bank scored the largest net switching gain in the second quarter of 2020, with 12,786 people choosing to bank with the fintech and just 788 people closing their accounts, just over 16 accounts gained for every customer lost. 

During the period from April to June 2020, the second most switched to account was Starling’s biggest rival, Monzo. It added 12,788 new current accounts and lost 1,395 customers, nearly twice that of Starling.

The figures show a healthy jump for the two digital banks from the Q1 2020 switching figures when Monzo placed third and Starling came fifth. Over this period, while both have continued their growth strategies, boosting revenues have also leapt up in importance for the two banks. 

Closely following behind the two digital banking heavyweights came high street favourites Nationwide and NatWest and Bristol-based challenger Triodos Bank, which gained 14.2 accounts for every account it lost. 

Triodos, formed in the 1980s in the Netherlands, bills itself as a “sustainable bank.” 

Zoe Sear, head of marketing and communications at Triodos Bank UK, said: “The COVID-19 crisis has impacted the lives of people across the world and has highlighted many societal and environmental issues. During these challenging times, we have seen a rise in people switching banks to bring about the change they want to see in the world."

“Creating a better future after coronavirus means rebuilding our economy, creating a climate-friendly future and stabilising our natural world. At Triodos, we provide a positive opportunity for consumers to use money as a force for good – by changing your bank you really can make a difference and put people and the planet first.”

Shifting pandemic trends  

After current account switching nosedived in the midst of the pandemic in Q2, switching numbers have rallied once more, with 38,383 more switches happening last quarter, 136,575 in Q3 in total.  

The number of accounts switched each monthly consistently increased from July (29,895) to September when 62,511 accounts were switched using the Current Account Switch Service (CASS). 

Maha El Dimachki, chief payments officer at Pay.UK, owner and operator of the Current Account Switch Service, said: “The market changes we’ve seen this year are like nothing anyone anticipated a few short months ago and we’re now looking at a very different financial ecosystem.” 

“After a dip in switching figures earlier in the year, it’s encouraging to see month-on-month rises in switching numbers through the most recent quarter. Our focus is to ensure the Current Account Switch Service is available to those who wish to manage their finances more flexibly by switching their current account in a stress-free manner.”    

Of those who have used CASS, nearly three quarters (72 per cent) say they prefer their new account and 85 per cent of people would recommend the service. 

Since it was launched in 2013, 6.8m accounts have been switched through the Current Account Switch Service and more than 100m payments have been successfully redirected. 

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