Press release

Open Banking transformation moves a step closer

The CMA is today taking the next step towards introducing Open Banking.

Written message: 'Making banks work harder for you'.

The development of Open Banking – the use of technology to provide customers with more control over their accounts and financial services – is one of 17 CMA-imposed changes that will make banks work harder for their customers.

Other changes, on which the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is opening a consultation today, will require banks to cap their monthly unarranged overdraft charges, help customers avoid unarranged overdraft charges by making banks text them when they are at risk of going overdrawn, and also help customers compare the service they get from their bank with other banks.

Alasdair Smith, Chairman of the retail banking market investigation, said:

These reforms will fundamentally transform banking for personal customers and small businesses. They will break down barriers, increase competition and give customers control over their own money.

Taken together we expect our remedies to deliver direct benefits to customers of between £700 million and £1 billion.

In its final report published in August this year, the CMA announced measures aimed at ensuring that customers benefit from technological advances, and that new entrants and smaller providers can compete more fairly.

Further measures in today’s consultation include requiring banks to publish rates for small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) lending products and to develop tools to allow for easier comparison of SME banking products.

Responses on the 17 measures in the draft order are invited by 5pm on 23 December by email to retailbanking@cma.gsi.gov.uk or by post to:

Project Manager
Retail banking market investigation
Competition and Markets Authority
Victoria House
Southampton Row
London WC1A 4AD

Notes for editors

  1. The CMA is the UK’s primary competition and consumer authority. It is an independent non-ministerial government department with responsibility for carrying out investigations into mergers, markets and the regulated industries and enforcing competition and consumer law. For more information on the CMA see our homepage or follow us on Twitter @CMAgovuk, Flickr and LinkedIn.
  2. The members of the retail banking market investigation group are: Alasdair Smith (Chair), Tom Hoehn, Philip Marsden, Jill May, and Ed Smith.
  3. The CMA will open a separate consultation on draft undertakings from Bacs next week.
  4. Media enquiries should be directed to Simon Belgard (simon.belgard@cma.gsi.gov.uk, 020 3738 6472).
Published 23 November 2016