Monday 10 December 2018

Ulster Bank increases fees for business customers

Quarterly maintenance fees on current accounts will jump 180pc
Quarterly maintenance fees on current accounts will jump 180pc
Charlie Weston

Charlie Weston

ULSTER Bank has written to its business customers to tell them it is increasing its banking fees.

ULSTER Bank has written to its business customers to tell them it is increasing its banking fees.

The move will see quarterly maintenance fees on current accounts shoot up by 180pc, with rises in a string of other charges.

However, there will be lower fees for automated transactions in a move designed to encourage more electronic banking by businesses.

The rises only apply to business customers on standard tariffs, and not to those on the likes of negotiated fees or those that have special arrangements.

Ulster Bank argues it is the first time in 10 years it has increased its business banking charges, with some fees going up for the first time in 16 years.

It also argues that other banks have since raised their fees.

An Ulster Bank spokesperson said it has written to standard tariff business customers to inform them of changes to business current account fees.

"These changes are the first that Ulster Bank has made to business fees in at least ten years and brings these charges into line with the market," the spokesperson added.

The bank pointed out that it has reduced the fees for automated transactions such as service and debit card transactions. This is in response to changing customer behaviour and a move toward digital and cashless transactions, the bank said.

The changes will come into effect on May 19 next, with the first charges leaving customer accounts on September 7.

This is because the fees are charged quarterly in arrears.

Customers have been written to give them 60 days' notice of the changes.

Ulster Bank, whose chief executive Gerry Mallon has announced his departure, has reduced the fee for automated transactions such as service and debit card transactions to 10c from 22c. All customers, including those on negotiated fees, will benefit from this from May.

The changes will see the account maintenance fee almost triple, as it goes from €5.08 a quarter to €14.25.

Bank/An Post manual transaction fee goes from 40c to 55pc per transaction, with the fee for cheques lodged in branches or post offices doubling from 24c to 55c.

The percentage fees for cash paid in at branches and paid out at branches rise from 0.5pc to 0.6pc.

Ulster Bank declined to say how many of its business customers will be impacted by the higher fees.

Irish Independent

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