Banks and their customers don't exactly see eye to eye when it comes to consumers' attitudes about banks' reputation and trustworthiness. That's the key finding of one recent survey on the subject.
The difference between consumers' and bankers' impressions was a matter of 44 points on the most recent biannual Index of Bank Sentiment, created by banking consultants BAI & Finacle and based on surveys of bankers and 2,500 U.S. bank customers.
The index consists of a consumer portion, on which the reading came in at 77 points, and a banker portion, on which the tally was 121 points, suggesting that bankers have much greater faith in their customers' positive attitudes than reality indicates. The baseline of 100 was established in August 2009.
The researchers attributed the gap to the bankers' greater emphasis on how much progress they think they've made in the past year. Consumers seemingly aren't nearly as impressed as bankers believe they should be.
Bank reputation and image
- 64 percent of respondents said their primary bank has a good image and reputation.
- 62 percent said they trust their primary bank.
- 40 percent said they feel their bank doesn't look out for their interests.
- 37 percent said banks generally are trustworthy.
Bank services and fees
- 85 percent of respondents said they expect to pay no fees for a checking account.
- 68 percent choose online banking as their most frequently used banking option.
- 52 percent said they're very knowledgeable about the fees their bank charges.
- 44 percent said banks' fees are reasonable.
- 42 percent are neutral on the subject of bank fees.
- 55 percent of respondents said they intend to pay off some or all of their credit card debt.
- 51 percent said paying off their credit card in full was a priority.
- 45 percent said they're saving money each month for the future.
- 24 percent believe U.S. economic conditions will improve in the next six months.
Show of hands, please: Is your bank trustworthy?