SBI reduces charges for non-maintenance of balance in in savings accounts

Daniel Fowler
March 14, 2018

Stung by widespread public criticism, the State Bank of India (SBI) on Tuesday slashed the charges that penalised its customers for not keeping "minimum balance" in their saving accounts.

This choice takes extreme feedback that the bank earned strong pay of Rs 1,771 crore in only 8 months from contributors who neglected to keep up the balance in their bank accounts.

In April 2016, the SBI had re-introduced the penal charges on non-maintenance of average monthly balance after a gap of five years.

SBI reestablished (AMB) charges from April 2017, following a hole of 6 years and afterward amended it downwards in October after input from partners. There are different charges for Metro & Urban, semi-urban and rural villages with an additional tax of GST.

Furthermore, there is nil minimum balance amount in BSBD account, also there is no upper limit set for maintaining maximum balance. "Bank also offers its customers to shift from regular savings bank account to BSBD account on which no charges are levied", P.K. Gupta, managing director, SBI, said in a statement. The move will benefit almost 25 crore of the bank's customers.

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This report comes on a day when the SBI reduced the minimum balance charges for non-maintenance of average minimum balance by up to 75 percent. The charges at semi-urban and rural centres were also revised to Rs 20-40 from Rs 25-75, said an Economic Times report.

The lender has 41 crore savings bank accounts, out of which 16 crore accounts under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna or basic savings bank deposit account and of pensioners, minors, social security benefit holders are already exempted from charges on non-maintenance of minimum balance. The combined non-performing assets (NPAs) of 21 listed PSBs had risen to more than Rs 7 lakh crore at the end of September previous year. Besides, it has unveiled a Rs 2.11 lakh crore recapitalisation plan.

The penalty for non-maintenance of MAB is calculated on a staggered basis - depending on the shortfall - so be sure to go through your bank's website for the relevant details.

As on September 30, 2017, SBI has a deposit base of Rs 26.23 lakh crore with CASA ratio of 43.81% and advances of Rs 18.92 lakh crore.

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