Darlington Building Society says it has witnessed a measurable rise in business as people desert banks following ongoing their bad press.
In recent weeks, the mutual has seen an increase in the number of people applying for savings accounts and a rise in mortgage applications.
“All of the publicity about banks is having a positive effect on business,” explained the Darlington’s chief executive David Dodd. “At our half year end we are ahead of target.
“Mortgage lending has been strong and we have been pleased with the popularity of our mortgage products. At the same time we are noticing a good performance with our savings products.
“We recently launched a special corporate deposit account for example and the response from local businesses has been incredible. People are now seeing the real value of having their own local building society; it’s about the whole package.”
Dodd stressed that no building societies were ever involved in setting LIBOR rates: “At Darlington Building Society we just concentrate on what we do best: looking after local interests.”
He argues current news headlines about banks also back up research that reveals that when it comes to financial institutions building societies are the ones that people trust.
In a recent GfK NOP study, customers rated mutuals more highly than financial institutions in all important areas such as value for money, being open and honest, treating customers fairly, looking after their communities, being supportive when customers get into difficulty and valuing their custom.