RBS May Charge to Hold Cash Deposits if Bank of England Takes Rates Below Zero

Only business customers would be affected

by Sara Sjolin
Market Watch

Royal Bank of Scotland and Natwest could become the first U.K. banks to charge customers to hold their cash if the Bank of England yanks benchmark interest rates below zero in wake of the Brexit vote.

In a letter to about 1.3 million customers, RBS — which also owns Natwest — warned that with global interest rates at “very low levels” the bank could be forced to start “charging interest on credit balances” dependent on future market conditions. The letter was sent only to business and commercial customers and not to private clients.

“We will consider any necessary action in the event of the Bank of England base rate falling below zero, but will do our utmost to protect our customers from any impacts,” an RBS spokesman said in a statement.

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