Lloyds TSB plans to set up a development fund for credit unions to pre-empt publication of a Treasury report expected to lambast banks which exclude poor communities.
The clearing bank has initially pledged &£50,000 to the credit union development fund which will offer start-up grants for credit unions. It will also encourage other financial institutions to make further contributions to the fund.
The Government has identified credit unions as the best way to attract the 4 million UK adults without bank accounts into the financial system.
A soon-to-be-published Treasury report is expected to recommend a series of measures to stimulate credit union growth.
A Lloyds TSB spokeswoman concedes the bank will offer current accounts to credit union members once they have proved themselves to be profitable customers.
The fund’s launch is subject to a successful feasibility study commissioned by Lloyds TSB, which is being carried out by the New Economics Foundation.
Development of the fund follows a &£10,000 donation by Lloyds TSB to The Llanelli and District County credit union in Wales last month.