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Metro Bank scraps overdraft fees

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Metro Bank has temporarily waived overdraft fees for personal current account customers in a bid to help those financially hit by the coronavirus outbreak.

From 1 March to 30 June 2020, new and existing customers will not be charged any interest for using their overdraft. The change will occur automatically, so customers do not need to contact the bank.

Metro Bank had been due to hike the interest rate on overdrafts from 15% to 34% from 25 April. This was in response to new rules from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) aimed at making overdraft charges clearer and easier to compare.

Kat Robinson, director of bank accounts at Metro Bank, said: “We’re mindful of the uncertainty caused by coronavirus and are committed to supporting our customers whose personal finances may be impacted at such a challenging time.”

Metro Bank is the latest bank to waive interest on overdrafts in response to the global pandemic.

Barclays has scrapped overdraft charges until the end of April, while Nationwide said it would not charge overdraft interest from 20 April until 1 July for customers financially impacted by coronavirus.

HSBC has increased the interest free buffer on overdrafts from £25 to £300 for a three-month period and Lloyds, Halifax and Bank of Scotland is offering customers a £300 interest-free overdraft buffer for three months from 6 April.

Santander has introduced a £350 interest free overdraft buffer for three months from 6 April and Virgin Money, Clydesdale Bank, Yorkshire Bank are offering a £500 buffer from 1 April.

First Direct and M&S offer a £250 buffer – but they did this even before the crisis.

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