Passbooks .........

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Some people prefer them, eg pensioners ?
Abbey Branch Saver pays 3% gross on balances under 10,000 based on zero withdrawals in a year.
Or Nationwide Bonus Saver pays 4.25% gross including bonus. A passbook is provided. Any withdrawals results in loss of bonus so interest rate reduces to a rather insulting 1% gross.
Can anyone better that?
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Pog Mo Thoin wrote:

Can anyone "worse" that, do you mean? What use is a savings account to a pensioner if it doesn't allow withdrawals?
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is

I have visions of computer literate pensioners like myself pegging out and our widows having no idea where our cyberspace, electronic password protected assets are hidden. Derek.
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Thanks, Derek. You've just jabbed a hot needle into something that's been worrying me. I suppose I could write out full instructions, complete with customer refs, IB numbers, account nicknames (whatever they are) passwords etc. Risky! Jf
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writes

and

I jokingly recorded (many years ago) a tape to be played at my funeral and made references on it to offshore accounts. Now I should perhaps update it to include internet banking and my Betfair account:-) Seriously details of things like that should be included in wills. Derek.
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>I jokingly recorded (many years ago) a tape to be played at my funeral >and made references on it to offshore accounts. Now I should perhaps >update it to include internet banking and my Betfair account:-) >Seriously details of things like that should be included in wills.
Well... If you remember that solicitors are lawyers... Or think about a will reading and last one out of the office is a plonker... Jf
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james said

No not nicknames and passwords, just a list of the financial institutions and account numbers.
When someone dies you just write to the institutions with as much information as they will need to identify the account and go from there - the deceased name and address will possibly be enough so the key is knowing where the money is.
They certainly do not expect passwords, and it would be risky to send them.
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I'm a pensioner, drawing down from a SIPP and qualifying for the basic crumblies state pension in July. I've just opened an ING Direct account. Once the account was set up, I dumped a fairly large sum into it. ING Direct is a very much a no thrills operation which operates through a link to a proper bank account. No ATM cards, no postal statements, not even a paying-in book. Interest is calculated daily and credited to the account at the end of each month.
To open the account required a link to a normal bank account with a monthly savings direct debit from that account to the ING account. Their account set-up software didn't allow that bit to be circumvented. I suppose that now the account is set up, I can cancel the direct debit savings element. All I wanted was somewhere to dump some money.
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uk.finance on 04 Apr 2004 by announcing:

So which banks do you find thrilling?
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writes

Secluded, grassy ones, with a pretty teller who provides instant access, doesn't have a fixed endowment policy, and accepts deposits without proof of identity. Jf
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james wrote:

I think you mean no frills. If you want a thrill, I suppose you should invest in pork belly futures.

You are mistaken, and I know, because I have one too. You don't have to set up a monthly direct debit for a specified amount each month, though you may do if you wish. The basic requirement is for a variable open ended DD, which is for the purpose of making "on demand" transfers.
This is because the normal method of transferring a sum from the "real" bank account to ING savings account is not to push the money from the main bank account, but to ask ING to pull it, using the "move money" button on their menu.

You don't want to cancel it with your bank unless you want to lose the ability to dump more money into it should the opportunity arise. You want to cancel the regular pull instruction at ING's end.
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Many thanks for the enlightenment. It seemed when going through the on-line hurdles that a direct debit link was required.

That makes sense. I suppose their request to start the account by sending them a cheque meant that the cheque also served as an element in proof of identity.

Succinctly put. Your plain English 'push-pull' abilities are needed by the bank. None of the above was made that clear on their website.
As someone commented earlier, I await with interest (sic) to see if ING's rates have a 'honeymoon' period and are allowed to stagnate through several interest rate rises. One cannot help wondering how much they've soaked up from other banks.
NB: I needed to query by phone last week the non-appearance in the account of a cheque I'd posted to them. I got through to an extremely helpful, English-accented chap who said that they had suffered a slight hiccup and not to worry because "I have a scanned image of the cheque in front of me". From his comment, I presume that they scan cheques received by post for answering queries like mine. I can't believe that OCR has advanced sufficiently to be able to read some of the scrawled cheques I receive.
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james wrote:

It is. But it doesn't have to be for regular specified amounts.

Indeed. Oddly enough they don't seem to require anywhere near as much ID as a normal bank would. That's why, I reckon, they need this "link" to a "proper" bank account.

I had assumed that the *only* way to put money in was to ask them to pull it by DD from your proper account, and that they did not need the infrastructure to deal with postal deposits. Unfortunately it seems I was mistaken. It's fuddy-duddies like you who'll be responsible if rising costs force them to cut their honeymoon rate. Best stick with the High Street, old chap, with those well-endowed instant-access dolly birds.
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I don't understand. What's fuddy-duddish about paying cheques into a bank account?
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James Follett. Novelist. (G1LXP) http://www.jamesfollett.dswilliams.co.uk

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james wrote:

It's too traditional. With-it folk operate their fancy account by letting their finger dance across their keyboard, not by writing a cheque and posting it [and if it's someone else's cheque payable to them, they "launder" it through their trad account first].
As I said, I misunderstood and originally assumed the only way the ING account could be fed was by transfer from the linked "real" bank account, and that the consequent ability to dispense with the "traditional" cheques-and-cash-in processing facilities would help keep their costs down and depositor interest rates high.
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Traditional? Ah -- the English disease of fixing things that aren't broken?
Over the past few months I've made many EBay purchases by cheque without any problems. Judging by the correspondence in the EBay 'community' forums, Pay Pal and other weird methods of making payments seem fraught with trouble.
I rather like old-fashioned banking. Any dealing problems between HSBC Investment and myself are usually sorted out very smoothly in our local Godalming branch of the HSBC. Last time I was in there for a chat with their customer services manager, there was no end of hassle going on on the other side of the partition with a group of non-English-speaking Rumanians (or Latvians?) and their spokesman trying to sort out DSS housing benefit cheques from Waverley Borough Council with the CSM having to give decisions on cashing the cheques because the east European chappies didn't want to open bank accounts and Waverley council didn't want to pay in cash. The problems were eventually sorted out by HSBC staff and everyone was happy. A system that not broken and is therefore in urgent need of fixing.
On-line banking is okayish for just moving money about, and I might even use it to pay routine bills such my TV licence, but it seem unlikely to replace ordinary high street banking. That the main banks have got themselves saddled with the cost of two systems ain't my fault.
Besides, an old josser like me can't be expected to understand all this on-line nonsense. Took me ages to get the banking world to accept Opera as a respectable browser, and I rarely load Windows unless I have to!
By the way, there's a pensions office in Belfast that seems to be on the ball. Without any prompting from me, they've sussed that I'll be 65 in July, eligible for the state pension, and have even worked out my graduated pension entitlements from long-forgotten payments I made in the 1970s. Naturally there's a form to be completed and signed. No mention of doing anything on-line.
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[Text interleaved/in conversation order: read to end for all comments] begin quote from james in uk.finance about: Re: Passbooks .........

Indeed. :) I don't know how I ever survived without internet banking, now the only time I have to visit my branch is to pay in cheques, and I can setup and amend bill payments on a whim..

..or: the disease of remaining resolutely stuck in the past for no good reason when *proven* (not gimmicky) better technological advances exist. :-(
Sometimes (see below) we're too stuck in the mud for our own good.

Sure: but There Are Better Ways.

Indeed, I've heard much dodginess about PayPal, which is rather gimmicky.
The question is: why in the UK are we so reluctant to take the route that most of our continental neighbours use - namely direct credits to bank accounts? No gimmicks, it uses the _preexisting_ banking system, provides a means for online payment (no paper cheque needed) and doesn't resort to potentially-dodgy (and costly) third-party methods of payment.

It's just as easy to fire off a secure email at any time of day or night (although, I agree, sometimes the quality of response you get from whichever random droid answers can leave a little to be desired: the solution there is surely to have a consistent account representative for each person, rather than 'next-in-queue').

There is considerably less cost and risk in paying benefit payments into bank accounts than in cash (or cashable cheques), it's the right thing to do. I dare say it also reduces fraud.
This is actually an argument against going into the branch: with online transactions I don't have to worry about queues!

It's ideal for paying bills. I much prefer to pay bills by bill payment rather than having to traipse&queue to a PO/bank with a cheque, or entrust my life to direct debits destined to come out of my account just when I don't have any money :-(
The only need I have for local bank branches is for cash withdrawals (which are usually done by ATM, where finding 'my' branch is pretty irrelevant) or deposits (which could all be done via the Post Office if all banks agreed to adopt that system - this of course also supports the viability of local Post Offices).

Fair point, but that's where the friendly Post Office could come in. On the other hand, it seems that "old jossers" are one of the sectors of the population most enamoured with the internet! :-)

Plenty of people (and accessibility legislation) fighting the 'any browser' battle. Most banks seem pretty good now.

Luckily the form got to you in the post, otherwise you wouldn't have known! I'm not convinced that all of the Government agencies know where you are consistently, if you move relatively frequently.

The UK Govts ain't too good at that. Cluelessness for starters, and then getting duped with IE-only 'solutions' for seconds.. :-(
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David Marsh wrote:

You can send them your cheques by snail-mail, so you don't *have* to visit the branch at all. You might still prefer it, though.
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