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Current Accounts - Ireland - February 2009

The financial services authorities in Ireland have responded to concerns regarding a lack of transparency in overdraft charges and account switching by altering the banking codes in both NI and RoI, and in turn heightening customer protection.

Advances in technology are bringing the Irish current accounts market further into the 21st Century, and account management is now even easier and more accessible through the development of mobile phone banking. Meanwhile, current account providers are diversifying their product offerings and have intensified their customer acquisition tactics.

Key report themes
  • To what extent have changes in the Banking Code and Consumer Protection Code impacted on the activity in the current accounts market?

  • What role does new technology play in the current accounts market?

  • What are the current and potential effects of the credit crunch on the current accounts market?

  • What are financial services providers in Ireland doing to increase current account ownership?

  • What are the important factors for consumers when choosing a current account provider?

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Table of contents

  1. Issues in the Market

      • Key themes in the report
        • Report definition
          • Consumer section
            • Abbreviations
            • Insights and Opportunities

              • Talking money
                • A little help from my friend
                  • The big freeze
                  • Market in Brief

                    • Finance consumers given a voice
                      • Technology paving the way for better current account management
                        • Credit crunch’s effects felt in current accounts market
                          • Consumers cash in on aggressive switching tactics
                            • Increased competition and changes in banking codes driving current account uptake
                              • Interest rates remain the top factor when choosing current accounts
                                • A nation of technophiles and demanding divas
                                • Fast Forward Trends

                                    • Trend 1: Consumer as Detective
                                      • What’s it about?
                                        • What we’ve seen
                                          • What next?
                                            • Trend 2: Mood from Food
                                              • What’s it about?
                                                • What we’ve seen
                                                  • What next?
                                                  • Internal Market Environment

                                                    • Key points
                                                      • Payment Services Directive set to ease the burden of cashless transfers
                                                        • The results so far...
                                                          • Calls for industry changes as OFT slams financial services providers
                                                            • The banks fight back
                                                              • ‘Free banking’ likely to be a credit crunch casualty
                                                                • Recent developments
                                                                  • 2008 UK Banking Code living up to its expectations
                                                                    • IBF Personal Account Switching Code – three years on
                                                                      • Heightened protection for RoI consumers
                                                                        • Stamp duty slash a welcome relief
                                                                          • Interest rate cuts fuelling consumer anger
                                                                            • Online banking going from strength to strength
                                                                              • Figure 1: Percentage of respondents who carry out online banking as an internet activity, NI and RoI, 2003-07
                                                                            • Key players note online banking success
                                                                              • Growth in number of non-nationals sustaining account uptake
                                                                                • Figure 2: Estimated number of immigrants to RoI, 2000-08
                                                                                • Figure 3: Estimated international migration inflows, NI, 2000/01-2006/07
                                                                                • Figure 4: Number of births and birth rate, NI and RoI, 2002-07
                                                                            • Impact of the Credit Crunch

                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                • The recession at a glance
                                                                                  • Figure 5: Overview of downturn in global economy, 2008
                                                                                • Changes afoot in UK and Irish financial institutions
                                                                                  • Nationalisation
                                                                                    • Figure 6: Bank ownership, UK, 2008
                                                                                  • Northern Rock
                                                                                    • Bradford & Bingley
                                                                                      • Acquisitions and mergers
                                                                                        • Alliance & Leicester
                                                                                          • HBOS and Lloyds TSB
                                                                                            • Barclays and Lehman Brothers
                                                                                              • Government intervention
                                                                                                • Latest developments in the recession
                                                                                                  • The effects on Irish soil
                                                                                                    • Figure 7: Economic outlook for NI and RoI, 2007-09
                                                                                                  • Implications
                                                                                                      • Figure 8: Number of repossessions on mortgaged properties, UK, 2001-Q3 2008
                                                                                                    • Interest rate cuts a relief for homeowners and a worry for savers
                                                                                                      • Figure 9: Average annual UK and eurozone interest rates, 2003-Jan 2009
                                                                                                  • Overcoming Financial Exclusion

                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                      • ‘Unbanked’ statistics reflect success of financial inclusion strategies
                                                                                                        • Barriers to current account uptake
                                                                                                            • Figure 10: Banks that offer basic current accounts, NI and RoI, 2008
                                                                                                            • Figure 11: Total number of basic bank accounts opened, net of closures, UK, April 2004-April 2008
                                                                                                          • Basic bank accounts – opening the gateway to cross-selling
                                                                                                          • Strengths and Weaknesses

                                                                                                            • Strengths
                                                                                                              • Weaknesses
                                                                                                              • Who’s Innovating?

                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                  • Big bucks for ‘Big Switch’
                                                                                                                    • Other banks offering financial benefits
                                                                                                                      • Rewards for sensible spenders with AIB
                                                                                                                        • ‘Vantage’ for the advantaged
                                                                                                                          • Technology paving the way further
                                                                                                                            • Mobile phone banking
                                                                                                                              • Contactless cards
                                                                                                                                • Faster payments quicken payment process
                                                                                                                                  • Makeovers to enhance brand identity
                                                                                                                                    • Funds when you need them most
                                                                                                                                      • Increasing product offerings for the youth market
                                                                                                                                        • New product offerings for 2009
                                                                                                                                        • Market Value and Forecast

                                                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                                                            • Competition in the marketplace fuelling current account uptake
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 12: Number of current accounts in issue, IoI, NI and RoI, 2004-13
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 13: Number of current accounts in issue, IoI, NI and RoI, 2004-13
                                                                                                                                            • Future growth driven by the credit crunch?
                                                                                                                                              • Fall in account values reflective of global economic climate
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 14: 12-month averages of amounts held in Irish residents’ current accounts, NI and RoI, 2006-08
                                                                                                                                            • Companies and Products

                                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                                • An Post
                                                                                                                                                  • Abbey National plc
                                                                                                                                                    • Alliance & Leicester
                                                                                                                                                      • Allied Irish Bank (AIB)
                                                                                                                                                        • Bank of Ireland Group
                                                                                                                                                          • Halifax (Bank of Scotland Ireland Limited)
                                                                                                                                                            • Halifax (Bank of Scotland plc)
                                                                                                                                                              • HSBC Bank plc
                                                                                                                                                                • Nationwide
                                                                                                                                                                  • National Irish Bank (NIB) and Northern Bank
                                                                                                                                                                    • Permanent TSB
                                                                                                                                                                      • Post Office
                                                                                                                                                                        • Ulster Bank Group
                                                                                                                                                                        • The Consumer – Current Account Ownership

                                                                                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                            • Current account ownership in RoI playing catch-up to NI
                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 15: Current account ownership, NI and RoI, 2007 and 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 16: Breakdown of consumers with no current account, by age and socio-economic group, NI and RoI, 2008
                                                                                                                                                                              • Females getting to grips with finances
                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 17: Current account ownership, by gender, NI and RoI, 2008
                                                                                                                                                                              • Premium and packaged accounts reach their peak?
                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 18: Percentage point growth of current account ownership (only or main account), by type of account, NI and RoI, 2007-08
                                                                                                                                                                              • Interest rates remain a key factor in current account choice
                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 19: Top five most important factors when choosing a current account, NI and RoI, 2006 and 2008
                                                                                                                                                                              • Locality a new concern for consumers
                                                                                                                                                                                • Corporate identity and reputation increasingly important
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 20: Top five most important factors when choosing a current account provider, NI, 2003-08
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 21: Top five most important factors when choosing a current account provider, RoI, 2003-08
                                                                                                                                                                                • Interest in telephone and internet banking continues to flourish
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 22: Agreement with ‘telephone/internet banking facilities’ as an important factor when choosing a current account, NI and RoI, 2003-08
                                                                                                                                                                              • Consumer Typologies

                                                                                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                  • NI target groups
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 23: Consumer typologies based on aspects that would improve a consumer’s banking experience, NI, 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Opportunists
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Technophiles
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Relationship Seekers
                                                                                                                                                                                        • RoI target groups
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 24: Consumer typologies based on aspects that would improve a consumer’s banking experience, RoI, 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Solo Financers
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Finance Divas
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Technophiles
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Neglected Bankers
                                                                                                                                                                                                • Untapped Financers
                                                                                                                                                                                                • Appendix

                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 25: Top five activities carried out online, NI, and RoI, 2007
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 26: Number of current accounts in issue, IoI, NI and RoI, 2004-13
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 27: Number of respondents with a current account, by demographic breakdown, NI and RoI, 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 28: Type of current account owned (only or main account), NI, 2007 and 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 29: Type of current account owned (only or main account), RoI, 2007 and 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 30: Important factors when choosing a current account provider, NI, 2003-08
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 31: Important factors when choosing a current account provider, RoI, 2003-08
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 32: Number of current accounts owned, by demographic breakdown, NI and RoI, 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 33: Consumer typologies based on aspects that would improve a consumer’s banking experience, NI, 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 34: Consumer typologies based on aspects that would improve a consumer’s banking experience, RoI, 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 35: NI clusters, by demographic breakdown, 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 36: RoI clusters, by demographic breakdown, 2008

                                                                                                                                                                                                Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                                                                                To learn more about the companies covered in this report please contact us.

                                                                                                                                                                                                Current Accounts - Ireland - February 2009

                                                                                                                                                                                                £1,095.00 (Excl.Tax)