The financial regulator is calling on major UK banks to address the issue of rewarding savings

Madrid, July 4 (European Press) –

The UK's Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) on Thursday called a meeting of key executives of Britain's four biggest banks to address concerns about the growing gap between rewards offered for citizens' savings and the interest applied on loans.

According to the British press, the British regulatory body is expected to hold a meeting tomorrow with senior executives from HSBC, NatWest, Lloyds and Barclays, after the Treasury Committee of the House of Commons in the United Kingdom Parliament questioned the… “miserable” returns. Offered to savers on their deposits in the context of sharp increases in interest rates.

In this way, the financial watchdog and executives will discuss the performance of cash savings and how banks communicate with their customers about rates, sources familiar with the meeting agenda told the Financial Times, which could lead to “savings”. Charter” or set of sector-specific commitments.

“We believe there is more value to be offered to consumers,” he said. “We are not happy with some of the low savings rates we are seeing, and we want banks to support customers… and for people to be able to make informed decisions.” A person familiar with the position of the Financial Supervision Authority.

However, a banker contacted by the newspaper noted that the sector had already signed a “mortgage letter” last week in a move organized by the Treasury to help homeowners cope with the rising cost of their loans, adding that “it now appears they are considering it”. Something similar with regard to saving.”

The average five-year fixed mortgage rate today exceeded the 6% interest rate for the first time since November, after the Bank of England raised interest rates to 5%, their highest level, at its June 2018 meeting. Counter Inflation.

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Specifically, the average five-year fixed mortgage rate was 6.01% on Tuesday, according to financial information service Moneyfacts.

This is the highest cost of mortgages since November last year, when interest rates rose sharply in the wake of then-Finance Minister Kwasi Kwarteng's mini-budget fiasco.

On Monday, the Treasury Committee of the House of Commons of the United Kingdom Parliament questioned several of the country's major banks, as well as the British financial sector regulator, over the “miserable” returns offered to savers for their deposits in the context of the financial crisis. Sharp increases in interest rates.

In letters to Barclays, HSBC UK, Lloyds Banking Group, NatWest and the Financial Conduct Authority, the parliamentary committee expressed concern that banks' savings rates “remain too low”, especially on instant access savings accounts. Despite continuous increases in interest rates, with a reference rate of 5%.

Likewise, in the communications sent, the Treasury Committee also noted that major UK banks reported strong growth in their profits and net interest margins in the first quarter.

In this way, in its correspondence with the authorities, the Commission asked whether banks considered their savings rates to provide “fair value” to customers and whether users’ inertia would be exploited.

Mortgage deferral.

At the end of June, the UK government announced an agreement with major banks and building societies to provide citizens with a series of relief measures and facilitate the repayment of their mortgage loans in the face of the increasing impact of rising prices. , including imposing a moratorium of at least 12 months before foreclosures can be carried out for non-payment of a mortgage.

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The head of the British Treasury and UK Finance Minister, Jeremy Hunt, explained at the time that “anyone will be able to talk to their bank or mortgage lender without any impact on their credit history.”

Likewise, Hunt stated that those people “harmed” by their inability to pay their mortgage will be able to change the loan to pay interest only or extend the term of the loan “and, if they wish, return to their original mortgage agreement within (the next) six months.” .

“I think it will give people a lot of comfort and prevent them from having to worry about having to deal with their banks when they're worried about their financial situation,” he said.

Finally, the UK Finance Minister announced that people at risk of losing their homes will be able to take advantage of a period of at least 12 months before entities foreclose on their mortgage due to non-payment of the mortgage.

“Banks and mortgage lenders have a number of alternatives. The last thing they want to do is repossess a house,” Hunt emphasized when making the announcement. Forced restoration.”

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Bank of England decided, at its meeting held in June, to raise the reference interest rate for its operations by 50 basis points, to 5%, its highest level since September 2008, in another decision that is bolder than expected, which is Which means extending the current sequence of increases in money prices to thirteen consecutive meetings.

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