Financial Inclusion: Improving the Financial Health of the Nation

Paper
Date Published: 
Mar 2015
Author: 
Agar, J.

Examining the level of financial inclusion in the United Kingdom

This report evaluates the financial inclusion landscape in the United Kingdom (UK) and provides recommendations to develop a financially inclusive UK where every adult and child can enjoy decent financial health. It states that nearly two million adults do not have a bank account and about 8.8 million citizens in the country are over-indebted. The report also highlights the main challenges in furthering financial inclusion which include the lack of a national financial inclusion strategy, lack of financial resilience, irrelevant and unaffordable insurance products, and the need for better financial skills. It provides a number of recommendations to solve these challenges including:

  • Designate a senior minister as the government lead on financial inclusion, and financial capability;
  • Ensure payment mechanisms are responsive to the needs of all consumers;
  • Promote greater consistency and accessibility in identity requirements for opening a bank account;
  • Enable the use of public sector and non-traditional data in credit scoring, with safeguards, to make access to financial services easier for excluded groups;
  • Promote a more coherent approach to customer-focused debt advice through better coordination and clear regulatory guidance;
  • Provide financial skills training from primary school through to retirement, including at key life stages and events.
Type: 
Paper
Country: 
United Kingdom