Halifax leads the current account switching battle
A total of 273,470 current accounts were switched between 1 January and 31 March 2018, according to Bacs.
This is the highest quarterly total for two years and a 10% increase from the figures recorded a year earlier.
In the past 12 months (1 April 2017 to 31 March 2018) there were 957,124 switches, reoresenting a 1% increase compared to the previous 12 months when 949,047 switches took place.
Since the Current Account Switch Service (CASS) was launched in September 2013, more than 4.7 million switches have been processed.
A total of 46 banking brands are now under the switch scheme and 99.2% of switches were completed within the seven working day timescale.
Where are savers moving to?
The latest data available from Q3 2017 (published six months in arrears) revealed that Halifax was a winner in the switching battle.
For switches completing 1 July and 30 September 2017, Halifax gained 53,422 accounts but it lost 24,214, leaving it with a net gain of 29,208.
In second place was Nationwide which reported 37,101 gains, but 11,098 losses, meaning a net gain of 26,003 accounts.
At the other end of the spectrum, NatWest gained 9,584 accounts in the quarter but it lost 26,167, leaving it with a net loss of 16,583.
Following closely behind is Barclays which reported a net loss of 15,252, after gaining 7,268 but it lost 22,520 accounts.
Of note is HSBC which gained an impressive 29,504 accounts, but saw 29,974, leaving it with a net loss of 470.
Sally Francis, money expert at MoneySuperMarket, said: “With current account offers of up to £200 to switch, 2018 started with some strong incentives from some of the leading high street banks. The latest current account switching stats from Bacs show more consumers are starting to take heed of these offers and the switching service.
“It could well be an indication that attitudes are changing for the better. People are realising that loyalty doesn’t pay and are taking action to move to better offers that give something back.”
Francis said for those looking to switch now, M&S Bank is one for consideration. It’s offering £185 in vouchers if you switch and stay for a year. First Direct has also just launched a raft of new switching incentives, including a £150 Expedia voucher.