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Steam Banking

Community Veteran
Posts: 5,322
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Registered: 21-03-2011

Steam Banking

I've been a NatWest customer for over 40 years and haven't seen such chaos as has been produced by their recent bungled software upgrade. Thank heavens I use good old style steam railway banking (alongside internet banking). Wherever possible I pay in full in cash. It is a tried and tested system which doesn't go wrong when a geek somewhere does something stupid. My back-up system is a substantial steel security safe with a large canine defence system. The safe always holds at least one month's spending money so any temporary banking glitch only affects those organisations hooked on electronic funds.
I've often dreamed about paying my rates bill (sorry Council Tax) in cash too, using one pound coins which are legal tender in any amount.
Who else still uses steam banking with real money? If the general public knew how close the banking system came to collapse a couple of years ago I think they might be more cautious. The inside information I got was that we were at one point 48 hours from the ATM's not producing cash on demand.

ps: The canine defence system saves money on me paying gym fees.
Now Zen, but a +Net residue.
12 REPLIES
Community Veteran
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Registered: 02-08-2007

Re: Steam Banking

Some interesting point there !
Surely all coins are legal tender, what would happen if you turned up with a sack of pennies, could they refuse it ? Would it be legal for them to refuse it ?
Looks like Natwest customers didn't even get any notice, wages were not paid or card payments were refused, sure Natwest will eventually compensate everyone so they are not out of pocket BUT what compensation will be paid for the time wasted in going into a branch which could be miles away.
In addition to all the customers who have had problems I also feel sorry for counter staff who are not only having to put in extra hours at minimum notice but will no doubt get a lot of abuse from some customers for the inconvenience caused. The top bosses of these banks should be made to forgo any bonuses this year and any planned bonus shared between the counter staff.
I Can see a number of customers moving accounts,
Lets hope the problem was due to a system upgrade and nothing more sinister............ enough said.
James
Grafter
Posts: 21,036
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Steam Banking

Quote from: gleneagles
Surely all coins are legal tender, what would happen if you turned up with a sack of pennies, could they refuse it ? Would it be legal for them to refuse it ?

There are some coins whereby you can only use x amount of them to make a payment.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legal_tender#United_Kingdom
Community Veteran
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Re: Steam Banking

Most cashiers depts in Councils will have access to an automatic coin counting device, so a single person turning up to pay rates would not cause a lot of problems to count the 13 kilograms of coins, but if a large group of people turned up bearing canvas bags loaded with one pound coins ...!
Now Zen, but a +Net residue.
Community Veteran
Posts: 7,928
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Registered: 02-08-2007

Re: Steam Banking

That's interesting, I never knew that but it does make sense.
Community Veteran
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Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: Steam Banking

I guess Nat West together with RBS and Ulster Bank will be facing some hefty claims for compensation Undecided
Community Veteran
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Registered: 30-08-2007

Re: Steam Banking

Strangely, so far (as a NatWest customer) I've mostly had no problems at all, all of my Sainsbury/Tesco purchases have been taken normally (I use self-service) and I used pay-at-pump for fuel as usual yesterday evening without incident -although that is pre-pay rather than post, but the machine reported I had my usual £89 limit. Only my boss was on patrol this morning explaining to those staff (including me) who are paid by BACS he had been unable to process wages this week so far, and offering cash to those who wanted it (I didn't as it happens) I haven't checked online banking so far.
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Community Veteran
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Registered: 24-09-2008

Re: Steam Banking

We've just switched from RBS to NatWest for our 'paying in household account', the RBS branch was one of those taken over by Santander, didn't like the idea of being with Santander Undecided
SWMBO is paranoid about banking, so operates 2 household accounts, one a 'paying in account' where all funds are deposited, this has no dr or cr card, no cheque book, no internet banking, just a simple once/twice a month telephone transfer to another High Street bank which operates the 'paying out account', which has DD, credit /debit cards, S/O, Internet banking and cheque book. The 'paying out account' always has a minimal balance

I use to think it a bit odd, but over the years have just got used to it.
Community Veteran
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Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: Steam Banking

@journeys - thats actually a good way of doing things and I used to do it myself years ago as it made things much securer from scammers etc.
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
Community Veteran
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Re: Steam Banking

..and now a report in The Register it was the India Offshore team who dunnit.  I don't know if it's true, but it would be great to read the autopsy of the inquisition that follows.
Maybe a demonstration of the true cost of outsourcing.
Now Zen, but a +Net residue.
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Re: Steam Banking

Quote from: gleneagles
Surely all coins are legal tender, what would happen if you turned up with a sack of pennies, could they refuse it ? Would it be legal for them to refuse it ?

Yes they could refuse and it would be perfectly legal of them to do so if the council tax bill is for more than 20p!
http://www.royalmint.com/aboutus/policies-and-guidelines/legal-tender-guidelines
An interesting additional point in there is
Quote
In order to comply with the very strict rules governing an actual legal tender it is necessary, for example, actually to offer the exact amount due because no change can be demanded.
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
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Community Veteran
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Registered: 24-09-2008

Re: Steam Banking

I have just been listening to Iplayer Moneybox with Paul Lewis, about the hard done by guy who said he has so little money that he has been "reduced to eating sandwiches. "
Nearly choked on my coffee, half the population of Africa would give anything to be "reduced to eating sandwiches"
Community Veteran
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Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: Steam Banking

Have to agree with you there Wink