Leave My Bank Alone!

Since the Government brought in its guarantee scheme under which it can force mergers, there has been talks of consolidation in the baking sector. Their has also been talks that the only two major banks that will be left will Bank of Ireland and AIB. I personally hope not.

I have been a customer of Permanent TSB (and TSB before that) for as long as I can remember and I must say the service there is excellent. I have never had an issue with them. They also are not exposed as much as BOI and AIB to bad debts from developers. So I was delighted to read a post over on Turbulence Ahead which points out the folly of merging to many banks in our sector. He points to an interview with Nassim Nicholas Taleb (embed below). In the interview he points out difference between big banks and small banks and the importance of diversity in the banking sector as when banks “fails then it isn’t catastrophic for the rest of the system.” I have to agree with Gerard when he says “we need to let weaker banks fail – though protecting savers – whilst maintaining low barriers to entry for new banks to ensure diversity: and less vulnerability to shocks.”

There is room for some consolidation in the way the EBS and Irish Nationwide could be merged with one of the major players in the market without losing too much of the diversity in the system. According to finfacts.ie there are 14 commercial banks in Ireland. So the loss of two banks through merger or acquisition will still leave us with a healthy banking sector that would be able to absorb shocks. Exactly what we need.

Skimmer Update

Well following may last post on skimmers it was on the front page of the Evening Echo (Im the Bank Customer) but it seams the Ulster Bank on Patrick St was also hit by the same people and people have been caught by that one.

So people beware

UPDATE: Front Page (PDF)

Skimmers, Skype and other S’s I think of!

Well on the 6th of October I twitted about this incident, but i think it deserves a blog post also, mixed in with a few other things.

I was on delivery at work (Boots Patrick St, Shameless plug I know) but I noticed 3 people at the ATMs at BOI on Patrick St, not taking much notice as we had a huge delivery.

But on my breakfast break (I started work at 6:45am!) I was hungry and didnt have money on me, so had to go to the ATM, now I am not a BOI customer (I’m Permanent TSB but they are at the other end of Patrick St), but I use that one out of conveninece, but I noticed something strange where the cards went it. It was slightly the wrong colour and there were prongs were tehre normally wasn’t so I didn’t use it. (Went to centra got brekkie using ATM in the shop) SO i said it to the girls inside in work describing it and they agreed it didn’t look right. so I rang the Gardaí, as you do, first time ever. So i waited with one of the other girls for them to arrive.

She decided she should warn people (I’m shy, really I am…) so she was and the Gardaí arrived who told us two foreign nationals (I had identified the people at the ATM as being from Eastern Europe) where watching us from Argos, we were freaked!

Afterwards while I ws at work a Garda came in and told me what was in the device, a card reader, a camera and a TV Screen. Thankfully there was no transmitter so if anyone used said ATMs, its okay. Waiting on the Gardaí now to contact me about goving a statement and that.

But be careful when using ATMs!

Now I downloaded Skype last night (about time I know), but I must say it is fantastic soft ware, why I didn’t download it before I do not know. All I know is that it will make calling Kerry cheaper 😀

Im really hard to think of other S’s but someone has sent me a very interesting link which I must now blog about!!

So this post has been brought to you by the letter S

That so reminds me of Sesame Street!!!!