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How to slow down Faster Payments

In a last-ditch effort to avoid incurring another exorbitant penalty fee at my bank for (once again) overstepping my overdraft limits I authorised a transfer from my Internet-based savings account with Egg to my current account. Problem solved? Er, no. it seems that the payment will take three working days to clear, (ie five days if you count the weekend).

I asked Egg why they weren't compliant with the Faster Payments programme, the OFT-mandated scheme for delivering near real-time transfers for Internet-based payments that was introduced with great fanfare by the industry in May.

This is Egg's reply: "Like many other banks, Egg have chosen to phase in the faster payments service, offering inbound capability in time to meet the industry launch date. We will be working towards enhancing our services so that we will be able to send transfers as Faster Payments too. Unfortunately, dates for this are not yet confirmed."

How convenient is that?

Magically, my account has been instantaneously debited for the full amount. The missing funds are presumably earning interest for Egg in some faster processing parallel universe known only to the banking industry.


Comments: (4)

Stanley Epstein
Stanley Epstein - Citadel Advantage Ltd - Modiin 07 September, 2008, 17:06Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

My sympathies Paul. Isn’t it amazing how banks always seem to get it right with this immediate debit thing while the corresponding credit never ever works the same way? That part of the transaction always goes on a “Cook's Tour” of the banking world’s superhighways. Imagine if the poor credit could speak what an amazing tale it would tell.  And to add insult to injury this happens virtually everywhere from Albania to Zanzibar.  

Dave Barnes
Dave Barnes - . - Edinburgh 08 September, 2008, 11:55Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

Only RBS has fully implemented the Faster Payments scheme rules at the present time. The others will only catch up if enough people complain, or indeed, move to an RBS account and tell them why!


Paul Seagrove
Paul Seagrove - Seagrove Associates - London 09 September, 2008, 08:20Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

I recently had a very different experience with "Faster Payments".  I used Barclay's Internet Banking on a Saturday afternoon to send money to a chap who banks with HBOS.  I didn't expect the transfer to even begin until the following Monday.  I was somewhat surprised when the other guy emailed me a few hours later to say the money had already arrived in his account!  Faster Payments sometimes really do work, just not when you need them to!

A Finextra member
A Finextra member 27 November, 2008, 17:05Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

I work with we're taking a very close look at how the scheme has developed since 'go-live'.

We would be very interested in your views- especially if you work for a bank in the industry or a corporate considering the commercial value of FP.

Very interesting blog piece, thanks.