Banking statistics UK

What are the biggest banks? Which banks are winning and losing customers? How are opinions about banks changing? Find the latest UK banking statistics here.

The UK banking sector is the largest in Europe and one of the most prominent globally. 97% of the UK population have a day-to-day bank account, making them an inevitable part of our everyday life. We gathered the latest banking statistics on the biggest and best banks in the UK, along with carrying out our own research revealing how often people are switching their accounts, their opinions on well-established banks and digital banks as well as the most common reasons why users feel negative about their bank.


  • 61% of Brits said they have switched banks at some point in their life.
  • Over a quarter of Brits (26%) switch every three to five years.
  • However, a fifth of consumers stay with their bank for up to 20 years.
  • Generation Z is the least likely generation so far to stick with the same bank, with 57% switching their main account with two years of turning 18
  • For the high-street bank customers, the main reasons for feeling negative about their bank were savings rates (29%)

What are the biggest banks in the UK?

Out of the hundreds of banks operating in the UK, we analysed the top five banks that are currently the market leaders in terms of size (using market capitalisation) in 2020.

Back in 2020, HSBC was the largest bank in the UK, with a market cap of $161 billion. This was well over double the next biggest bank, Lloyds Banking Group, with a market cap of $61 billion. Barclays was the third biggest bank ($41 billion), followed by NatWest ($39 billion) and Standard Chartered ($30 billion).

Bank Market cap ($ billion)
HSBC Holdings 161.35
Lloyds Banking Group 60.95
Barclays 41.23
Natwest 38.94
Standard Chartered 30.23

Switching bank accounts: The latest statistics

According to our latest survey, 61% of Brits said they have switched banks at some point in their life. Out of those switching, 44% switch at least once every five years. The most common (26%) switching period was every three to five years. However, some consumers stay loyal to their banks for far longer, with a fifth of consumers staying with their bank for up to 20 years.

Of the 61% who said they do switch banks, we analysed their survey responses to reveal a breakdown of how frequently they switch. Find the breakdown of those figures in the data visualisation and table below.

How often do Brits switch banks? Percentage
More than once a year 4.15%
Once every 1–2 years 13.70%
Once every 3–5 years 25.66%
Once every 6–9 years 18.69%
Once every 10–19 years 18.11%
Once every 20+ years 19.68%

Generational differences: Younger generations are switching banks more often

Generation Z is the least likely generation so far to stick with the same bank, according to a Finder survey in 2020.

We found that 57% of gen Z adults switched their main account within two years of turning 18. By comparison, only 26% of millennials and 19% of generation X moved bank within two years of turning 18. The generation most likely to stick with their banks early into adulthood were baby boomers, with only 16% moving banks in the two years after they turned 18.

How many adults switched their main account within two years of turning 18?
How many adults switched their main account within two years of turning 18? Percentage
Gen Z 57%
Millennials 26%
Gen X 19%
Baby boomers 16%

UK current account switches (January to March 2020): Which banks are winning and losing?

Looking at 2020’s third quarter (1 July – 30 September), Starling Bank and Monzo made net gains of 12,652 and 9,157 customers respectively, while Barclays, HSBC, NatWest and Santander all made net losses.

Halifax had the highest overall increase in customers, with a net gain of 22,742 customers. However, Halifax was offering a switch deal during this period and was the only high-street bank to make considerable gains.

The data shows a 65% drop in total switches during lockdown vs the first three months of 2020, which reflects a decline in the number of switching incentives while banks seemed to focus on their existing customers.

Brand Gains Losses Net Gains
Halifax 33,327 10,585 22,742
Starling Bank 14148 1496 12,652
Monzo Bank 12451 3294 9,157
Lloyds Bank 18,081 9,746 8,335
Bank of Scotland 2,513 1,846 667
Triodos Bank 736 70 666
Ulster Bank 337 398 -61
Danske 151 302 -151
AIB Group (UK) 44 304 -260
Bank of Ireland 57 331 -274
Clydesdale Bank 3,296 3,622 -326
Nationwide 9670 10598 -928
Co-operative 1,803 3,433 -1,630
Tesco Bank 55 2004 -1,949
Barclays 5,572 9,067 -3,495
RBS 3476 7171 -3,695
TSB 3512 8517 -5,005
NatWest 5904 15621 -9,717
Santander 11018 21047 -10,029
HSBC 5,998 20,861 -14,863

What are the most famous consumer banks in the UK?

Some banks have developed strong brands over many years of operating, while others (such as digital banks) have become known for being disrupters. Here we analyse which banking brands are the top 50 most well-known in the UK in 2020.

Overall, in the UK, Barclays is the most famous bank, followed by Nationwide Building Society, HSBC and Santander. All of these banks have been operating for over 100 years, slowly building their brand presence and dominance in the banking sector.

However, a few digital banks have managed to break into the top 50 most well-known banks without operating for such a long time. For example, Monzo (34th), Starling Bank (39th) and Revolut (49th) all broke into the top 50 most famous banks despite only being founded in the last 10 years.

Name Rank (ALL)
Barclays 1
Nationwide Building Society 2
Santander 4
Barclaycard 5
Halifax 6
NatWest 7
Royal Bank of Scotland 8
Lloyds Bank 10
Bank of Scotland 11
Co-operative Bank 12
Tesco Bank 13
Virgin Money 14
First Direct 15 16
M&S Bank 17
Yorkshire Building Society 18
Cheltenham & Gloucester 19
Clydesdale Bank 20
National Savings and Investments 21
Yorkshire Bank 22
Metro Bank 23
Citibank 24
Britannia 25
Skipton Building Society 26
118 118 Money 27
Coventry Building Society 30
Park Christmas Savings 31
Nutmeg 32
Vanquis 33
Monzo 34
ING Direct 35
Ocean Finance 36
Coutts 37
Lombard Direct 38
Starling Bank 39
Cahoot 40
West Bromwich Building Society 41
Smile 42
Norwich and Peterborough 43
Hitachi Personal Finance 44
Abbey 45
TotallyMoney 46
Lex Autolease 47
Zopa 48
Revolut 49
Atom 50

Generational differences: The rising fame of digital banks for younger generations

Digital banks seem to have found particular fame with younger generations. For example, for millennials, Monzo was ranked the 19th most well-known bank and Starling Bank was the 23rd most famous bank. In comparison, Monzo ranked 44th for gen X and 46th for baby boomers, while Starling Bank ranked 39th for gen X and 42nd for baby boomers.

However, the most well-known bank among millennials was still Barclays. Lloyds Bank was the most famous among gen X and Halifax was the most famous among baby boomers.

Name Rank (Millennials) Rank (Gen X) Rank (Baby boomers)
Barclays 1 4 3
Santander 2 7 10
Lloyds Bank 3 1 5
Barclaycard 4 5 7
NatWest 5 2 2
Halifax 6 3 1
HSBC UK 7 6 11
Nationwide Building Society 8 9 6
Co-operative Bank 9 11 12
Tesco Bank 10 13 14
Royal Bank of Scotland 11 12 4
Bank of Scotland 12 8 8
TSB 13 10 9
Virgin Money 14 14 13
M&S Bank 15 17 17 16 16 21
Metro Bank 17 27 28
First Direct 18 15 16
Monzo 19 44 46
118 118 Money 20 26 31
Yorkshire Building Society 21 18 15
Yorkshire Bank 22 20 20
Starling Bank 23 39 42
National Savings and Investments 24 24 19
Citibank 25 25 26
Britannia 26 21 24
Clydesdale Bank 27 22 22
Vanquis 28 31 35
Nutmeg 29 38 39
ING Direct 30 32 33
Park Christmas Savings 31 30 34
Ocean Finance 32 33 38
Skipton Building Society 33 28 23
Cheltenham & Gloucester 34 19 18
MBNA 35 23 27
Hitachi Personal Finance 36 41 44
Revolut 37 - -
Coventry Building Society 38 36 29
HBOS 39 29 25
Smile 40 42 45
Lombard Direct 41 37 32
TotallyMoney 42 45 49
Cahoot 43 35 37
West Bromwich Building Society 44 40 36
Coutts 45 34 30
Norwich and Peterborough 46 43 40
Lex Autolease 47 47 47
Zopa 48 46 43
Old Mutual 49 49 48
gohenry 50 - -
Abbey - 48 41
Mint - 50 50

Customer opinions of banks

Customer sentiment towards 10 of the UK’s biggest high-street and digital-only banks fell by 7 percentage points (pp) during lockdown, according to our new research with social analytics specialist BrandsEye.

This leaves overall consumer sentiment for the banking industry at -24% on a possible scale of +100% to -100% for the period between 1 March and 31 July.

However, over 800,000 social media posts from customers revealed that digital banks saw a sentiment decline of almost three times that of high-street banks during the pandemic. On average digital-only banks’ customer sentiment fell by 14 percentage points compared to just 5 percentage points for high-street banks.

While this is a blow for digital-only banks, it should be noted that high-street banks had, and continue to have, a much lower overall sentiment (-13% vs -35% currently).

To find out more about digital banking in the UK, explore the latest digital banking statistics here

Reasons high-street bank users feel negative about their bank

According to our new research, more than half (52%) the customers of high-street banks felt negatively towards their provider. For the high-street bank customers, the main reasons for feeling negative about their bank were savings rates (29%) and customer service over the phone (14%), in-branch (14%) and digitally (11%).

Most common customer complaints for high-street banks Percentage
The savings rates 29%
Customer service (phone) 14%
Customer service (in branch) 14%
Customer service (digital) 11%
The communication 11%
The overdraft 10%
The app 9%
The website 9%
The security of your money 8%
The loans 7%
Other 3%

The UK’s favourite student banks

Becoming a student means handling money independently for the first time for a lot of people. And even if you enter your degree feeling comfortable, living independently, often without the time to earn outside of your course, can see you quickly seeking financial support. For this reason, it’s worth thinking about which bank can offer you the most suitable student account.

Popular features offered by student banks

  • 0% interest overdrafts
  • Cash incentives
  • Freebies like a complimentary student railcard
With over a quarter (28%) of students choosing Santander, this is the most popular choice for student banking. With half the number of student accounts, HSBC is the second most popular option (15%). The third most popular student bank, with 11% of students, is Barclays.
Bank Percentage of students with accounts
Santander 28%
HSBC 15%
NatWest 9%
Barclays 11%
Lloyds 9%
Nationwide 9%
Halifax 6%
Other 9%
RBS 2%
TSB 2%

To learn more about how younger generations are banking, explore the latest student banking statistics here


  • Current Account Switch Service
  • Statista
  • YouGov
  • Save the Student


  • Finder commissioned Onepoll to carry out a nationally representative survey of adults aged 18+.
  • A total of 2,000 people were questioned throughout Great Britain, with representative quotas for gender, age and region.

For all media enquiries, please contact

Matt Mckenna
UK communications manager
T: +44 20 8191 8806

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