5 min read.
Question your bank

Why can’t your bank help you stay on budget?

12 February 2019

Avocado toast. Flat whites. Online shopping. These innocuous everyday things are often cited as reasons for our overspending.

It’s a convenient explanation isn’t it? Putting the blame purely on our lifestyle and breakfast choices. It absolves the institutions around us of any responsibility to help us.

Even though everyone knows budgeting is really hard. It’s not something we’re ever really taught. Many of us try our best with spreadsheets and apps, but the daily maths is still left to us to work out. Are we all expected to be walking calculators? Running the numbers in our heads at every checkout?

Guess what, there is ‘someone’ who knows the ins and outs of your financial life, perhaps even better than you do. Your bank.

Just think about the constant feed of data it has about your money – your salary, bills, daily commute, late night taxis, etc. Add to this, the great digital and computing capabilities available today. Couldn’t these come together to help you manage your spending more easily?

So what’s stopping the high street banks from investing in the tech needed to do that? And what’s stopping the new, digital banks to make smarter algorithms to calculate what you could spend every day?

Is the real reason that banks profit when you struggle with your finances? Overdraft fees, credit card charges, high interest loans, these are all big sources of profit for the banks. So, perhaps it’s not in their interest to help you budget or save.