Monzo is ‘one of the best’ ethical current accounts

App-based challenger bank comes out on top of rankings by Ethical Consumer, along with Triodos and the Ecology

App-based bank Monzo has been named a “best buy” for current accounts by a leading ethical body.

It joined Triodos Bank, Ecology Building Society, Charity Bank, Co-op Insurance, Ecclesiastical Insurance, Royal London and Aviva in getting the thumbs up from Ethical Consumer.

By contrast, major high street banks Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds, Royal Bank of Scotland/NatWest and Santander fared poorly, with none achieving more than five out of 15 in the organisation’s rankings.

Ethical Consumer is an independent, not-for-profit co-operative founded in 1989 and based in Manchester. It has developed an ethical rating system that it says is based on research of more than 40,000 firms, brands and products. It has just issued its latest guide to ethical finance and is calling for the big banks to adopt clear policies to avoid lending to “problem sectors” such as coal and tobacco, and provide full transparency about who they lend to and why.

While the “vast majority” of companies in the personal finance sector continue to score badly on ethics, according to the organisation, its researchers found ethical alternatives are emerging. One highlight is the current account from Triodos, which has an extensive ethical investment policy and is the only commercial bank in the UK to offer total transparency to savers and investors, publishing details of every organisation it lends to. The Triodos account can be operated online and via an app, and comes with an eco-friendly contactless debit Mastercard. An overdraft of up to £2,000 is available. But the stumbling block for some will be the £3 monthly account fee.

Ethical Consumer says Monzo, which is popular among under-30s, is spearheading the growth in app-based banks. It started out offering a prepaid debit card before switching customers to a full current account.

Contributor

Rupert Jones

The GuardianTramp

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