TSB swings to first-half loss but grows online activity
The bank – which is behind a major tech hub in Edinburgh – took a £111 million impairment across the six months as the economic outlook weakened. It pushed TSB to a pre-tax loss of £65.5m for the half, a year after making a £21.1m profit. TSB flagged the slow housing market and rising unemployment as two major threats.
However, as people switched to doing things from home, they also helped accelerate TSB’s online growth. Nearly three times as many customers are signing up for its mobile bank app every day than before lockdown. More than nine in ten transactions were processed through digital or automated channels in June, while more than 70 per cent of sales were online.
Around 3,500 TSB employees have been working from home during lockdown, and the company has filled 80 of its 100 new roles at the IT department in the Scottish capital. TSB has been pushing to improve its IT systems after a 2018 outage that locked two million people out of their accounts and damaged confidence in the lender.
Crosbie, the bank’s chief executive, said: “We had a strong start to the year, but the external environment changed significantly when Covid-19 struck. We’ve benefited hugely from the technology platform we now have in place at TSB, enabling us to accelerate our digital offer for customers when they needed us most.”
She added: “Despite the challenging context, our balance sheet and capital position remain strong, we have improved efficiency in our operations, and our purpose to help people increase their money confidence has never been more relevant.”
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