Switch advertised in banking services



Bank Discount, Bank HaPoalim and Bank Leumi side by side in central Tel Aviv. (Miriam Alster / FLASH90)

A new user-friendly system that makes it easier for Israelis to switch banks will be launched on Wednesday, the Jerusalem Post reported.

Customers will be able to transfer their accounts from one bank to another online, free of charge in a process that promises to take no more than seven days.

Called a “follow me” service, any fees or deposits reaching the old account will automatically flow to the new one within two years of the change. So far, all debits or credits from a closed account are returned and it is the customer’s responsibility to arrange the transaction.

The new system, which has been developed over more than three years, is part of a series of measures led by the Bank of Israel and the Ministry of Finance to strengthen competition in the banking sector.

Although many Israelis express their dissatisfaction with the services offered by their current bank, very few do business elsewhere, due to the high cost and inconvenience involved.

“Completing this step is another step on the road to an open, transparent and more competitive financial system that we are promoting on several fronts and which will allow customers to easily and conveniently choose the providers of the different financial services they use” a said the Governor of the Bank of Israel, Professor Amir Yaron. “

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