There are more and more Portuguese with “low cost” bank accounts

Have you ever heard of “low cost” accounts or minimum bank service accounts? The number of minimum bank service accounts increased by 16.1% in 2021 to reach 150,405, year-on-year, the Bank of Portugal (BoP) announced today.

The BoP recalled that the “minimum account for banking services can, as a general rule, only be held by individuals without other current accounts. The use of statutory exceptions is relatively limited”.

There are already more than 150 thousand Portuguese with SMB

According to a BoP note on its official website, during the year 25,935 SME accounts were created [serviços mínimos bancários], 74% by converting an existing current account in the establishment and closing 5,110 accounts, 83% of which at the request of the customer. Most accounts were made up of people between the ages of 45 and 65 (33.0%) and those aged 65 or older (35.2%),” according to the institution, with “only 3% of SME accounts were opened by customers under the age of 25".

The institution revealed that at the end of last year, "76% of SME accounts had only one holder" and that "only 4.7% of SME accounts were held by people who had other current accounts, because they were co-holders of a person". over 65 or a degree of disability equal to or greater than 60%.

In contrast, “in only 1.3% of existing accounts at the end of the year, the SME account was held by people who also co-owned another SME account with someone over the age of 65 or 'a graduate degree'. invalidity equal to or greater than 60%.

According to the BoP, last year "the percentage of SME account holders with other banking products in the same establishment has increased".

The BdP recalled that "the SMB account is a current account which allows its respective holder to access a set of banking services considered essential at a reduced cost", and that, "in addition to opening and maintaining the minimum account banking services, this includes the provision of a debit card and access to "home banking", as well as the execution of withdrawals at the counter, direct debits, national intra-bank transfers and transfers to other banks, through home banking.

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