than 9 million
in the uk
Access to appropriate bank accounts is central to enabling financial inclusion. Banking services play a key role in enabling people to find work, budget securely and pay for goods and services. While the number of adults without access to a transactional (current or basic) bank account fell from 1.92 million in 2006/07 to 1.75 million in 2007/08, considerable work remains to be done. The current ‘free if in credit’ banking model in the UK, does not meet the needs of consumers on low incomes or with poor financial management skills who struggle to avoid penalty fees and unauthorised overdraft charges. Social Finance is working with HM Treasury to assess and develop commercially viable business models for supported budgeting accounts (aka ‘Jam Jar Accounts’) for consumers that are not benefiting from the current banking system. The aim is to create better access to products that would support them to meet their regular bill commitments. Our research involves the evaluation of existing budgeting products in addition to an assessment of the need for and design of new products. We reported to the Financial Inclusion Task Force in April 2011. Our report can be found here.