National Savings & Investments (NS&I) today announced the latest stage in its programme to simplify and modernise its savings range and will no longer offer accounts through the Post Office.
From 2013, NS&I’s range of savings and investments will only be available direct from NS&I (via post, phone or online), apart from Premium Bonds which will continue to be offered through the Post Office.
Over the next year NS&I’s Investment Account will become a postal only savings account with statements replacing the current passbook, and offering an improved interest rate.
NS&I’s Easy Access Savings Account will close to all customers – instead customers will be offered the NS&I Direct Saver account or the postal Investment Account. New applications for the Investment Account and the Easy Access Savings Account will cease from 28 November 2011.
Post Office becomes a competitor
Jane Platt, chief executive, NS&I, said of the move: ‘Since 2007 we have been working to simplify and modernise our range of savings and to encourage our customers to invest with us directly. At the same time the Post Office has grown its own range of savings products.
‘We’re very proud of the service we deliver to savers by post, online and, in particular, via our UK call centres where staff have an average of over 24 years’ experience and are available seven days a week, 365 days a year.
‘We believe their expert knowledge of NS&I’s savings and investments will help our customers transfer to dealing with NS&I directly and we will work with our colleagues at the Post Office to support our customers through the changes.’
Move to direct sales
Paul Davies, analyst at Which?, added: ‘NS&I is using the modernisation programme to cut costs by 10%, and this is good news for taxpayers. Some customers will miss going into the Post Office to manage their accounts, but most people are happy to deal with their accounts by post, phone or online these days.
‘NS&I nows sees the Post Office as a competitor in the savings sector and this move will clarify the difference between the product portfolios of the respective organisations. The arrangement was beneficial for a long time and NS&I now wants to deal with customers directly.’
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