Consumer Access: Financial Services — [Mr Charles Walker in the Chair]

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 1:30 pm on 6th June 2019.

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Photo of Nicky Morgan Nicky Morgan Chair, Treasury Committee 1:30 pm, 6th June 2019

I do. I think the FCA is very aware of that, and wants to do better. That is why it has published the consultation on the definition of vulnerability. The hon. Gentleman and I have had previous conversations about the Financial Ombudsman Service, and I have had correspondence with other Members of this House. We all know that the FOS can sometimes struggle to offer the remedies and the speedy service that people are looking for. The FOS performs an important function, and its new leadership is very aware of the challenges. In particular, more and more of us are aware of the ability to go to the Financial Ombudsman Service, which puts pressure on it. However, the basic conclusion of our report is that everybody involved in financial services could do more.

Financial exclusion is a broad issue that can and does affect us all in many different ways. The key areas that the Committee chose to look at were why financial inclusion matters, which I hope I have already captured in my earlier remarks; the many issues that vulnerable consumers face, such as being able to understand their bank statements and communicate with their service providers in the way that they want to; and the closure of local bank branches and the use of post offices as a replacement.