Skip to comments.HSBC Bank Blocking Large Withdrawals Without ‘Evidence’ Of Spending Need (UK)
Posted on 01/27/2014 7:44:07 AM PST by RetiredArmy
HSBC Bank Blocking Large Withdrawals Without Evidence Of Spending Need
It seems that the bank, HSBC, has been a little overzealous in the implementation of some new, well meaning regulations, and now has egg on its face. Recently, some HSBC customers were prevented from withdrawing large amounts of cash because they could not provide evidence of why they wanted it. Apparently, customers were prevented from withdrawing amounts ranging from £5,000 to £10,000.
HSBC admitted it has not informed customers of the change in policy, which was implemented in November, but the bank says it has now changed its guidance to staff.
Stephen Cotton went to his local HSBC branch this month to withdraw £7,000 from his instant access savings account to pay back a loan from his mother.
A year before, he had withdrawn a larger sum in cash from HSBC without a problem, but this time it was different. He told a reporter from Money Box: "When we presented them with the withdrawal slip, they declined to give us the money because we could not provide them with a satisfactory explanation for what the money was for. They wanted a letter from the person involved."
Mr Cotton says the staff refused to tell him how much he could have: "So I wrote out a few slips. I said, 'Can I have £5,000?' They said no. I said, 'Can I have £4,000?' They said no. And then I wrote one out for £3,000 and they said, 'OK, we'll give you that.' "
He asked if he could return later that day to withdraw another £3,000, but he was told he could not do the same thing twice in one day.
He promptly wrote a complaint to HSBC about the new rules and also that he had not been informed of any change, and was told by the bank that they were under no obligation to tell him, explaining that As this was not a change to the Terms and Conditions of your bank account, we had no need to pre-notify customers of the change.
Mr Cotton struggled to understand the banks attitude, and he was not alone. "I've been banking in that bank for 28 years. They all know me in there. You shouldn't have to explain to your bank why you want that money. It's not theirs, it's yours." He said of the incident.
Peter from Wiltshire, who asked that his surname be withheld, had an eerily similar experience. He wanted to take out £10 000 cash from HSBC, some to pay to his sons and some to fund his long-haul travel plans.
Peter called the bank the day before to let them know in advance, and everything seemed to be fine, but the next day he got a call from his local branch asking him to pay his sons via a bank payment and to provide booking receipts for his holidays. Peter did not have any booking receipts to show.
The following day he spoke to HSBC again and this time, having examined his account, it said he could withdraw the £10,000.
Two specific examples of a phenomenon that has been growing increasingly common.
HSBC has said that it was responding to the negative feedback about the new practice and evaluating how the policy was being implemented. "We ask our customers about the purpose of large cash withdrawals when they are unusual and out of keeping with the normal running of their account. Since last November, in some instances we may have also asked these customers to show us evidence of what the cash is required for."
Money Box asked other banks what their policy is on large cash withdrawals. All said they reserved the right to ask questions about large cash withdrawals, but none said they would require evidence of what the money was being used for before paying out.
Douglas Carswell, the Conservative MP for Clacton, is alarmed by the new HSBC policy: "All these regulations which have been imposed on banks allow enormous interpretation. It basically infantilizes the customer. In a sense your money becomes pocket money and the bank becomes your parent."
But Eric Leenders, head of retail at the British Bankers Association, said banks were sensible to ask questions of their customers: "I can understand it's frustrating for customers. But if you are making the occasional large cash withdrawal, the bank wants to make sure it's the right way to make the payment."
At the root is the question, What is driving this unusual policy? What could be happening behind the scenes to make something draconian and arbitrary like this seem like a good idea to the banks decision makers?
On the surface, there seems to be nothing, but a deeper look by people who would know, such as a group called Forensic Asia, which is a Hong-Kong based research firm, recently issued a sell recommendation for HSBC, on the basis of questionable assets on its balance sheet.
In a recent report by The Telegraph, the analysts involved actually worked at HSBC for some 15 years, and suggest that the giant bank could have overstated its assets by more than £50bn and ultimately need a capital injection of close to £70bn before the end of this decade.
They went on to say "HSBC has not made the necessary adjustments, during the quantitative easing reprieve...The result has been extreme earnings overstatement, causing HSBC to become one of the largest practitioners of capital forbearance globally... This charade appears to be ending."
SORRY FOR THE ALL BOLD. It simply would not correct. I used the </b> and it still did not work. So, sorry for the bright bold.
It’s a bank policy, not a governmental policy. If US banks wanted to, they could do it today. They don’t need an EO from anybody.
FDR did this to my great aunt during the Depression.
No doubt why the family found $30,000 stuffed in her mattress after she died.
Try that, and see what they say:
"May we please see the ransom note? No note? Sorry, no cash. It's bank policy. See if the kidnappers will take a bank check, or a wire transfer. And thank you for banking with HSBC, and have a really great day!!!"
OK, it's easier to read without those silly reading glasses!
This could actually protect the savers though.
A run on the bank and many would lose everything.
Happened here in 1929.
HSBC new feature ,holding your money for ransom
Such as they limit how many transfers per month you are allowed to make from savings to checking before you are assessed a fee. But you can make as many withdrawals from savings through an ATM with no fees. (USBank)
Brits should tell their bankers:
“I need to buy a TANK to protect myself from TYRANNY!!!!”
So, your okay with you go down to the bank. Say you have $100,000 in savings and want $15,000 to BLOW. You hand them the withdrawal slip and they say NO! You say I want my $15k to blow in Vegas. They say NO. You cannot have it. Go away. So your telling me your okay with this policy??? Really???
How about It's My ***king Money!!!???
In the case of the US the Fed creates new $$$ from nothing to handle bank runs, which pretty much prevents them,
But in England they cant just create the currency so if they don't prevent a bank run then many customers will be screwed for good. "So your telling me your okay with this policy??? Really???" HAHA
Banks make $$$ by loaning it out. They cant just call a homeowner and demand full payment on a mortgage on the spot.
None of their damn business.
Not their damn business.
Its not the banks business to take steps to make sure that their savers money that they took is not lost?
I am finding that a bit illogical especially given the theme of this thread.
No it is not.
The business of the bank is to take deposits, use those deposits to make loans, and to pay out drafts on those deposits.
It is NOT the business of the bank what you want cash for or what you intend to do with it.
You aren't big on freedom, are you?
So are you suggesting the bank send an armed guard to go along with you, when you make a sizeable withdrawal, just to they can take steps to make sure that their savers’ money is not lost? What do you see as the limit to the bank’s involvement in “protecting” the customer who makes a withdrawal?
No-one is talking about a bank run, and cash controls to mitigate a cash run.
This is every-day transaction kind of stuff. That is none of the bank's damn business.
Obviously, making sure you don't buy that bass boat that you don't really need....
“Banks make $$$ by loaning it out. They cant just call a homeowner and demand full payment on a mortgage on the spot.”
True - but that’s probably spelled out in a contract. If the bank changes the rules on me, without my agreeing to it...I’m upset.
You Don't Need That!
Further down in the article it talks about the banks solvency problems.
That ‘obligation means little if this happens:
“Sorry, all your savings $$$ are gone.
You got here too late to get it, if you were one of that first hundred you would have got it back. But now we must close this bank as its all gone.
BTW :If you owe us $$$ we will sell that loan, so you still owe it to the bank who buys it.
We feel as bad as you do even though we who work at the bank got ours out first. “
I think you are making a big leap...from ‘Hey I want to take out $10k’ to a ‘run on the bank’.
Banks fail ALL THE TIME. And the federal government steps in, and halts large withdrawals. In other words, they already have emergency powers to prevent a run on the banks...and new rules such as these would have no impact on bank runs. None whatsoever.
Just think how “safe” your IRA or 401K is now.
It's not your money if you can't access it when you want to.
How would it be anarchy for me to get my money out of my account?
Or more likely, the bank gets a loan using accounts receivable as collateral to repay the depositors.
I already made that point, but if you look closely this story is about England. They cant just make mo $$$. If they don't take steps their depositors really get screwed.
This isn't the UK.
In the US we create our own currency so saving accounts are not at risk the way those in the EU are.
So that is unlikely to happen here,
Not the way it worked in 1929.
Bank run and it closed, bank sold its loans to pay bondholders first. Those owing to the bank just owed it to the next bank.(in fact this happened to my GMAC home mortgage a few years ago here)
Savers and investors got nothing.
Probably what English banks are trying to avoid.
It’s not your money peasant! You live, work and die at the state’s pleasure. You didn’t build that, I mean make that money! ;-)
Maybe HSBC wouldn’t have to worry about if they had thrown top-executives in prison for LAUNDERING MONEY FOR THE DRUG CARTELS instead of making them just pay a $1 Billion “cost of doing business” fine.
This actually shows why the US is still the reserve currency even though the Fed creates lots of $$$.
EU banks are not safe, I know this sounds a bit funny, but here is an example.
Banks are not private institutions. They are quasi-governmental institutions. That’s why they are closed on all the same days.
I was once short on a mortgage payment because the escrow went up and I forgot to adjust. It was ~ $50 short.
The company tried to hit me with a late fee on the entire mortgage for that more than the amount I was short, but I gave them grief and they backed off.
A year later they went under and sold my loan to another mortgage comp.
If they called in the loan now I could just pay it.
I’m seeing the words “cash” withdrawal used there. So, are we to assume the policy applies only to cash transactions? If so, I would go online and electronically transfer all my deposits to another bank. Addios, baby!
I like my credit union. Its not in the UK.
This is not a governmental law, that was my point.
I have an uncle who got some inheritance money, probably $30-$40K range and he deposited it in his local bank in Georgia where he lived. After a month or so he went down and wanted to withdraw $24,000 cash. He intended to buy a new vehicle and wanted to pay cash for it. He is old and stubborn and wanted cash money in hand. The bank refused him, told him no more than a couple of thousand dollars each day. He was fit to be tied and eventually pulled every penny out of that bank. This was in the 1990’s.
I had a friend who was a WWI vet and something of a loan shark in our community from the 1920’s to the 1950’s. He went in to pay off his house loan late one Saturday afternoon right before the bank closed. He paid it in full and the banker was wanting to leave and my friend said I will pick up the receipt paid in full next week so you can get home.
My friend went down to collect his receipt the next week and the bank was packed, bank run, the beginning of the Great Depression. My friend saw the banker and went to his office and said I am here to get my receipt and lien released on my house and the banker started carrying on that he didn’t know what he was talking about and he owed so much on his house still etc...
My friend not having any of this whipped out his revolver and pointed it at the banker and said a few choice words followed by hand over my receipt of you ain’t going home, which will it be? The banker handed over the receipt marked paid in full. From that day on this old guy kept very little money in any of the local banks and packed a gun until the day he died, he was quiet a character.
Yeah, ‘cuz someone could lose all their guns at the bottom of the lake if out in an un-needed bass boat, right?? (WINK WINK)
Thanks for posting.