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Theherald

KBC Bank set to spark price war

CORMAC MURPHY

KBC bank is to go against recent trends by opening eight new hubs and sparking a possible price war with rivals.

The bank is launching a new current account that offers free ATM and cheque processing for those who maintain their balance at €2,000 or more.

The account also features free online, mobile and point-of-sale transactions for all customers, the bank said.

It is the latest step by KBC in offering "a full suite of personal banking products" for consumers.

Simon Moynihan of price-comparison website bonkers.ie hailed the move as good news for people looking for an alternative to AIB and Bank of Ireland.

But he does not believe it will tempt existing account holders away from the pillar banks.

"People still don't switch current accounts in any great numbers.

"It does not look like (KBC) is really going after Bank of Ireland and AIB's existing customers," he told the Herald.

John Reynolds, KBC Bank Ireland chief executive, said: "We offer a comprehensive range of competitive personal banking products . . . We also plan to open eight more banking hubs nationwide over the next 18 months, starting with Limerick next week."

KBC's launch came only days after increased banking charges were imposed by AIB and Bank of Ireland.

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