10 Commercial Banks Rake In N26.8bn As Account Maintenance Fee

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By Kayode Tokede, Lagos –

A total of 10 commercial banks that include Zenith Bank Plc, Access Bank Plc, United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA) have reported N26.8 billion on current account maintenance fee in six months.

Others are Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, First Bank of Nigeria Holdings Plc, Sterling Bank Plc, FCMB Group Plc, Diamond Bank Plc, Union Bank of Nigeria Plc and Unity Bank Plc.

The 10 commercial banks in half year of 2016 generated about N26.5 billion for maintaining customers’ current account.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had indirectly reintroduced Commission on Turnover (CoT) fee as Current Account Maintenance (CAM) Fee in 2013.

The apex bank in 2013 commenced reduction of CoT terminated with zero CoT charge by 2016.

Of the N26.8 billion generated from customers’ current account maintenance, Tier-one banks contributed about N21.99 billion in six months under consideration, a decline of 2.1 per cent from N22.46 billion recorded in six months of 2016.

Access Bank of the Tier-one bank under consideration recorded 54.4 per cent increase in account maintenance fee to N1.9 billion from N1.26  billion while Account maintenance fee of United Bank for Africa Plc rose by 34.4 per cent from N1.9 billion recorded in six months of 2016 to N2.6 billion in six months of 2017.

The likes of Zenith Bank and First Bank of Nigeria Holdings Plc announced 6.69 per cent and 34.2 per cent decline in account maintenance fees.

Zenith Bank’s account maintenance fee, moved from N8.9 billion to N8.3 billion while First Bank of Nigeria reported N4.2 billion account maintenance fee in six months of 2017 from N6.4 billion reported in prior six months of 2016.

Aside Sterling Bank that recorded decline in account maintenance fee, other Tier-two banks recorded significant increase in in account maintenance fee in the six months of 2017 under review.

Sterling Bank reported 4.5 per cent decline in account maintenance fee to N662 million as against N693 million reported in six months of 2016.

Diamond Bank reported 27 per cent increase in current account maintenance fee from N1.8 billion to N2.3billion while Union Bank of Nigeria reported 19.3 per cent increase in account maintenance fee to N712 million as against N597 million in prior six months of 2016.

FCMB group reported N738 million in current account maintenance fee, an increase of 16.6 per cent from N633 million reported in six months of 2016 while Unity Bank’ s  current account maintenance fee rose marginally by 5.7 per cent to N369 million from N349 million in six months of 2016.

However, the Director, Financial Policy & Regulation Department,  Mr. Kevin Amugo,  in a circular replaced the CoT with CAM  but subject to maximum of N1 per N1000 (Mille).

The circular was titled, “Introduction of Negotiable Current Account Maintenance Fee Not Exceeding N1/Mille.

It stated, “The Revised Guide to Bank Charges (RGBC) which came into effect on April 1, 2013 provides for   a phased elimination of COT charges in the Nigerian banking Industry. Under the Guidelines, a zero COT regime was to come into effect from January 2016.