Well fingers crossed I’ve achieved my goal for March’s project. Ok, I’ve left it right to the last minute, like this week, but still. With a bit of luck (because I’m still waiting to be approved) I will be switching to the Co-operative Bank. I’ve thought several times in the past about joining them and leaving my big 4 bank but have been put off by the fact there is no branch local to me. It turns out now you can do any over the counter stuff via the Post Office. I’ve got 3 accounts to sort out, 2 business and 1 personal, so the phone calls to kick start the process were pretty tiring. However, they will do all the switching of standing orders and direct debits for me, so that will be a big help. I have to admit I am really nervous. What if something goes wrong in the process? But they’ve got a great reputation for customer service and we already use them for several other financial things, without any hassle, so I’m pretty confident it will go smoothly.
The Ethical Consumer March/April 2012 magazine was very helpful in deepening my understanding around ethical finance. Once I’ve got the big stuff sorted I might check out a few of the savings accounts they mention. – Charity Bank, Ecology Building Society and Triodos Bank are their top 3 along with the Co-op.
The types of issues highlighted include not only the nature of banks’ corporate clients and investments, but also the use of tax havens to avoid paying tax. However, the thing that shocked me the most was a piece from the World Development Movement about speculation by banks leading to increased food prices and a contribution to global hunger. If you want to read more about it and join me in adding your voice to the Real George Osborne campaign, go to: http://therealgeorgeosborne.com/.
That’s all for March. Next month is all about Energy.