Are there enough ATMs near you?

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The number of ATMs continues to decline in France, especially in large cities. In the United Kingdom, the market policeman will be able to impose a fine on banks if they do not maintain local access to cash.

With a drop of 3.4% in 2022, to 46,249 ATMs, according to a report published on July 24 by the Banque de France, the decline in the number of ATMs has accelerated compared to the 2% decrease recorded in 2021. Down by more than 12% since 2018, the trend should not be reversed with the project to pool the ATMs of three major French banks, BNP Paribas, Crédit Mutuel Federal Alliance (which also owns the CIC network) and Société General.

At the end of 2025, around 7,000 contact points will remain (which may have one or more automatic machines), compared to 15,000 distributors currently in service for these four networks. “The decrease in the number of distributors is concentrated in the most populated and best equipped cities, reflecting an optimization of the installations in order to guarantee in particular a better territorial network”, indicates however the central bank.

New UK Legislation

And this decrease “is not likely to alter the accessibility indicators”. Last year, the number of municipalities equipped with “at least one ATM” thus increased by 15 (+0.2%). In addition, 79.2% of the population is less than five minutes by car from the nearest distributor, and 98.9% within 15 minutes, “stable” rates compared to 2021.

In the UK, new guidelines, published last week by the Department of Finance, state that “the vast majority of people and businesses (in the UK) should not be more than three miles (4.8 km ) a possibility of cash withdrawal”. The FCA, the market watchdog, will be able to “impose a fine” on banks that do not comply with the standards.

Agencies are closing with a vengeance

Today, a large majority of people living in urban areas in the UK are within a mile (1.6 km) of a cash pick-up and deposit service, but this distance is approximately three miles in the countryside. Faced with the migration of their customers to online banking, British establishments are closing branches with a vengeance and are accused of creating “banking deserts”, which force their customers to have to go further and further to withdraw cash or do certain transactions in person.

The consumer association Which! estimates that more than half of the UK’s 10,000 branches have disappeared or are on the verge of closing since 2015. But, while the proportion of online payments “has risen from 45% to 85% in the last ten years, cash is still an integral part of the lives of many businesses and people,” the government says.

This article is originally published on /actu.orange.fr

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