The Real Wage, Inflation & The Falling Pound; Are Brits getting Poorer?

Unemployment rates in Britain are lower than at any time since the 1970s, and according to a survey conducted by recruitment agency Adecco, employers plan to hike wages by 1% over the next year, after a 1.5% increase in the first half of this year.

But despite this, British workers are likely to become worse off, because inflation rates are stubbornly refusing to come down, and the Bank of England have no immediate plans to increase interest rates. Read more

Should The Bank of England Bite The Bullet & Finally Hike Interest Rates?

It’s amazing to think that the Bank of England has not raised interest rates for more than a decade, but then nobody expected the credit crunch, quantitative easing, or indeed the “age of austerity” that George Osborne introduced during his time as chancellor.

That’s a lot of jargon to digest, but digest it we have, with the result that most of us have tightened the purse strings and tried to take a more frugal approach to our finances.

The big question now is, how much longer will we have to endure this financial stasis? Read more

Are Heavily In Debt Brits Flirting With Financial Disaster? 5 Tips To Help You Survive

Britain in Debt? The signs are not good. According to an article in today’s Times, the balance of Britain’s credit cards as a whole is closing in on £70 billion pounds, unsecured credit lending is increasing year on year, and the rise of concepts like payday loans and un-arranged overdrafts are causing consumers to fall further and further into debt. Read more

I’m Moving Abroad – Should I Open A Local Bank Account?

A local bank account can be a lifesaver when relocating abroad.

Relocating abroad is something that many people will do at least once in their lives, and generally speaking, it is a valuable life experience that allows you to experience a new culture, enhance your career prospects and even make you a more well-rounded person.

Even in today’s modern, digitalised world, however, there are certain hurdles that you must jump through and rules to comply with that you must understand if your stay abroad is to be a success. Read more

Is Santander’s 100% Digital Openbank A Template For The Bank Of The Future?

Santander launched its latest product, the “100% digital” OpenBank last week amidst much fanfare and some bold new features and promises. Currently it is only available in Spain, but is expected to be rolled out internationally soon.

So, after 15 months in the making, and having been re-built from scratch, can this re-launched product of Santander’s be seen as a blueprint for the way the bank accounts of the future will operate? Read more

Hidden Fees & Unfair Exchange Rates; Why Do Bank’s Charge So Much For Sending Your Money Abroad?

Banks and wire transfer services charge too much in fees and offer the least favourable exchange rates

If you are a follower of the financial news media, you are probably aware that how people are sending money abroad is changing.

The most common ways to send money abroad at the turn of the decade would have been to either use a money transfer agency like Western Union or Ria, or to visit your high-street bank.

But what many people don’t realise is that because of the monopoly that the banks, and these two transfer agencies had on the market, they were able to charge unnecessarily high fees, as well as offering you a price that did not accurately reflect the current value of a currency.

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Top 5 Reasons Why You Should Stop Using Your Bank for Transferring Money Abroad

Here at The Money Cloud, we were shocked to see research carried out by the Bank of International Settlements, that 85% of retail transfers are made through banks globally. There are many reasons why you shouldn’t use you bank for transferring money abroad and in this post, we have put together what we think are the 5 top reasons you should stop using your bank for international money transfers in comparison to the services The Money Cloud promote; Read more

The Big 4 Fintech Challenger Banks Changing The Way We Think About Personal Finance

The “Big 4” Challenger Banks

London may not be the world’s biggest FinTech hub, but there is an argument that says it is the most disruptive, and especially within the retail banking space.

There are no fewer than 5 recognised “Challenger banks” in operation currently, 4 based in London, and one in Durham. All have attracted significant funding, target millennials with mobile apps, instant spending reports and clever features, yet all face different challenges and issues as they battle to uproot the “big 4” high street banks; Lloyds, HSBC, Barclays and Natwest. Let’s have a look at 5 of the so-called challengers – in no particular order. Read more

Sending Money Abroad – Top 5 Things To Check Before You Click Send

There are all sorts of reasons to send money overseas, but whether it’s for business reasons; paying the wages of an overseas employee, for example; personal, buying a property or sending money to a new country before relocating there; or family, paying for a son’s or daughter’s education perhaps; the same rules apply when searching for the right service.

Let’s take a look at the 5 things to look out for before making a transfer. It pays, literally, to plan in advance, take your time, and consider all the options available to you. You might be surprised how many there are. Read more

Introducing Selfie Pay: An Unusual Use For Self-portraits

It started as a niche interest of tech-loving teens but soon grew into a social phenomenon. By the end of 2013, the Oxford Dictionaries named selfie ‘word of the year’, which wasn’t surprising given over a million selfies are taken every day. Now, the selfie has grown up and is getting a job in finance. Here’s the breakdown on how your next self-portrait could lead to a legitimate money transfer.

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Paying With Your Mobile: How It Works

66% of Brits know they can pay using a smartphone, and in the US 53% of shoppers want more stores to accept payments via mobile. Despite the enthusiasm for this growing technology, many of us still aren’t completely clear on how it works. That’s why we’ve put together this quick guide to mobile payments, which takes you through the three main approaches. Read more