Would you park up your shopping trolley and nip into a little booth for financial advice? No? Us neither. It just doesn’t feel right that at all does it?
Yet that could be the future for customers of Barclays Bank.
Barclays plan to cut hundreds of jobs in its investment banking division, and is also considering closing branches and replacing them with smaller outlets inside supermarkets.
The feeling among the Barclays ‘big wigs’ is that their future services have to reflect the fact that more customers are now accessing financial services online and via mobile devices.
Yet it is also becoming abundantly clear that there is a clear vacumn when it comes to financial advice. With the number of banks and building societies shrinking seemingly by the month, the ‘ordinary man/woman in the street’ are struggling to get answers to their important financial questions.
Barclays has denied reports that it would close as many as 400 branches, but the hundreds of proposed job cuts come on top of 3,700 lay-offs announced early last year.
Chief executive Antony Jenkins is also expected to unveil new five-year financial targets next month. He has been looking to improve profitability in the face of falling trading revenues and tougher regulations.
The big sweep of bank closures began in the 1990s. In 1990, there were 17,637 branches – today there are 9,500.
But while the banks and building societies are cutting back, our financial management company here at Lifetime continues to grow.
We now have two buildings at Great Cliffe Court, Dodworth – and the downstairs at Lifetime House has been transformed into a wonderful area to meet and discuss matters with clients.