News

Lloyds Banking Group is ramping up plans to float more than 600 of its branches as a new bank on the stock exchange if prices offered by bidders are too low.

Questions Of Cash: 'How can I recoup my missing wages?'

Q. I am owed £1,200 in wages from a security company, LGS (Lawful Guarding Services) Group that I worked for in early 2009. I never received pay for March and April and obtained a court judgment against them. I checked on the website of the body that security firms must register with, the Security Industry Authority, and the company is no longer listed. But I found a nearby company which provides similar services and has offices close by. I have a newly born son and debts, so I need the money. AA, Birmingham.

Santander in talks with Treasury over lending

Santander is holding direct talks with the Treasury after walking out on collective industry negotiations over bonuses and lending targets.

Questions of Cash: 'Lead passenger' ousted my daughter from flight

Q. My daughter booked a holiday with a group of six friends through First Choice. All six paid individually: my daughter used her debit card.

Santander in shock profits warning amid pain in Spain

Santander, the Spanish banking giant that owns Abbey and Alliance & Leicester, shocked the market yesterday by warning that annual profit would fall short of its forecasts.

Market jitters force delay to Santander flotation plan

Hopes that Banco Santander will kick off a rush of autumn flotations with a partial sell-off of its UK arm are set to be dashed, it has emerged.

Santander boosts mortgage share

Spanish banking giant Santander today said UK profits increased by more 15% after it lifted its share of the mortgage market to 20% in the first three months of the year.

Banks still levy big overdraft fees

Bank customers are still being hit with high overdraft fees.

Questions Of Cash: 'Discount on windows ended up costing me'

Q. In December 2008 I took out a finance agreement with Barclays Finance for two UPVC windows I ordered from Zenith Staybrite. I could afford to pay in cash, but the salesman said credit was cheaper – the finance company gave Zenith an "incentive" payment, called the "lifestyle subsidy", for £204, which Zenith passed on to its customers. I was told to obtain a settlement figure after seven months of payments and pay off the debt. But the settlement figure I was given was £976.36, which added to my £100 deposit and seven monthly payments of £17.04 made the total figure I paid £1,195.64 – £65.64 more than the "cash" figure of £1,130. In December I received a goodwill payment of £75 from Zenith, with a letter saying it did not accept responsibility for any problem. JG, Winchester.

David Prosser: Where are the new banks?

Outlook: The whole idea was to promote new competition in a market that is sorely lacking in exactly that

Spotlight: Santander's 3.5% cash ISA

Questions Of Cash: 'Santander compensation over error was pitiful'

Q. I have banked with Abbey – now Santander – for over 14 years, but recently transferred to NatWest using a switching service which made contact with all my direct debits including, they claimed, for my Santander loans. But Santander wrote to me saying it had not received loan repayments. NatWest said it had written to Santander and received no reply. I contacted Santander's loans division to arrange to pay the outstanding balance on two loans and on the 21 December it took £223 and £292.97 from my account for loan repayments. Santander then took a further £2,992.97 from my account. As a consequence I received numerous warnings of failed direct debit payments and incurred costs, which Santander has eventually covered. But I had no funds available to me over Christmas to buy gifts or pay for travel. The funds were only repaid to my account on 5 January 2010 and even then the repayment was £292 short. I have been promised the other £292, but still not received it. JA, West Sussex.

Spotlight: Lloyds’ 1.99% tracker mortgage

The deal

Questions Of Cash: 'I didn't pay enough interest to account small-print'

Q. A year and a half ago I responded to a promotional interest rate offer from Alliance & Leicester, investing £75,000 in its online saver account. After six months I received my first interest payment, which was only on £25,000. It emerged the maximum investment was £75,000. I am not normally careless, but I obviously did not read the small print. Alliance & Leicester refuses to pay the extra interest. MG, London.

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