Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the author(s) do not represent the official position of Barbados TODAY.
by W. Willock
I write today because I am fed up, dismayed and appalled at what the Banks in this little Barbados have been able to perpetrate and continue so to do for years and years. And it is getting even worse.
Do you know that the banks achieved increased profits during this pandemic? Who is supposed to deal with these people? Central Bank? So, what is happening? There is a slew of disturbing issues which we have to suffer every single day. Small businesses are probably the worse off since they are forced to operate mainly on a cash flow basis given a climate of economic pressure and recovery. Has the SBA tried to deal with this? Okay, so a person receives a cheque, whether crossed or not and goes to the same bank as marked on the cheque to hear that he must have an account at that bank in order to receive any funds.
This should be an illegal act. It is happening across the board. So we pay for cheques, then we pay each time one is used.
The person receiving the cheque has to pay if deposited at the counter or pay by waiting up to 10 days for the cheque to clear. This is one area with which I have MAJOR problems.
Even if you do a transfer online it costs $5 or much more for each transfer. And what about getting an overdraft facility to ease the money flow? It takes ages to get one where you have to spill your guts if it is a business and the owner has to give all of their personal information for such an overdraft. And then, there are the monthly charges. And worse yet, if it is not being used for a period of time they want to reduce it or take it away, even during the pandemic. Why? No interest fees coming in.
I deposited a cheque written from Bank A at Bank A on Saturday January 15 via the ATM, which is what the banks are touting to be the best way.
Today, Friday January 21, that cheque has not cleared. What is the real issue with clearing cheques? It is ridiculous and unproductive to have persons, especially Small Businesses, waiting for more than 2 days for clearance.
So only the banks are to make money? It seems to be a malicious act. What happens to the money while we are waiting? Is it used on short term investments? Am
I to believe that in all of this technology there is no faster way of determining if the funds are available, not only at the same bank but even at a different bank? It is happening as well, with Government-issued cheques.
I find this hard to believe. But in all of this, nothing is being done to restrict any of these activities. Is this what Small Businesses and entrepreneurs have to experience and endure during a pandemic and attempts to revive the economy? I hereby send out a plea on their behalf for these matters to be urgently addressed by those who have the power to do so.
Do the banks control the flow of money in this Republic? Now that credit unions are on the same card platform as the banks, I suggest an exodus to these institutions. Help! Help!