SBI slashes charges on minimum balance in accounts

State Bank of India- File

The State Bank of India (SBI) announced a substantial reduction of charges for non-maintenance of Average Monthly Balance (AMB) in savings accounts, effective April 1.

Between April 2017 and November 2017, SBI had collected Rs1,771.67 crore from customers on account of non-maintenance of AMB, according to a response that the Ministry of Finance gave in Lok Sabha in February 2018 (read it here).

The charges for non-maintenance of AMB for customers in Metro and Urban centres have been reduced from a maximum of Rs 50 per month to Rs 15 per month.

Now after applying the new rule from 1 April for SBI customers in metro and urban areas, there will be a penalty of Rs 15 penalty and at the same time, for the semi-urban and rural areas, the penalty has been reduced from Rs 40 per GST to Rs 12 and Rs 10 plus GST.

P.K. Gupta, managing director, retail and digital banking at SBI, said the bank has reduced the charges on the basis of customer feedback.

SBI's current minimum balance for urban areas is Rs 3,000, while for semi-urban and rural areas it is Rs 2,000 and Rs 1,000, respectively.

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Jan Dhan Yojana accounts, basic savings bank deposits accounts (BSBD), pensioners, beneficiaries of social benefits from the government and accounts of minors are exempted from complying with the minimum balance requirement. The above revision in AMB will benefit 25 crore customers.

The move will benefit 25 crore customers of the bank. However, the minimum amount to be maintained in the account remains the same. The Bank has an exceptionally solid store establishment having 41 crores Savings Bank accounts out of which 16 crore accounts under PMJDY/BSBD and of beneficiary/minors/standardized savings advantage holders were at that point exempted.

Last month, Kumar had said savings accounts are a product in which it is expected that some money would be available and transactions will take place.

In this case, the SBI Bank has replaced the penalty again. The amount was more than SBI's July-September quarter net profit of Rs 1,581.55 crore and almost half of the Rs 3,586 crore it earned as net profit April-September.

However, it needs to be noted that, the customer can not have any other Savings Bank Account, if he/she has a BSBD Account. Currently, the charges are in the range of Rs20-40.

"We all, including myself, want a first class service, but want everything free.I also like it".

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