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HSBC hikes interest-free overdraft buffer from £25 to £300

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HSBC is increasing the interest free buffer on overdrafts from £25 to £300 for a three-month period to help customers affected by the coronavirus outbreak.

The increase comes into force on Thursday 26 March and is available to customers with HSBC bank and Advance accounts.

The £25 buffer was introduced as part of the bank’s overhauled overdraft fee structure, which recently came into effect. As part of the changes, the bank hiked its overdraft interest rate to 39.9% from 9.9%.

The changes were in response to new overdraft charging rules from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) that apply to all banks and building societies.

HSBC has already announced a package of measures to help customers during the current crisis.

These include deferred payments for mortgages and allowing early access to fixed rate savings accounts without closure charges.

Customers also have the option to temporarily increase their credit card and overdraft limits.

Tracie Pearce, HSBC UK’s director of retail banking, said: “We are here for our customers in these truly extraordinary times.

“While we put in place a package of support for customers across a number of product areas, we recently added the option of a mortgage payment holiday, which we had not previously offered, and now we are providing additional relief on overdrafts for millions of our current account customers. This will provide some welcome short term cashflow support at this crucial time.”

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