Central Banking

Bank funding: gone in 15 seconds?

Bank runs, once triggered, are set to become much quicker and less controllable in future.

The queues forming outside Northern Rock made for striking images evoking memories of bank runs past, but they may be consigned to the history books after the introduction of a new payments scheme which will allow people to make near-real time payments direct from their bank accounts 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Dubbed "Faster Payments", the new payments service will deliver payments in "near" rea