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Money Box

Author: BBC Radio 4

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The latest news from the world of personal finance plus advice for those trying to make the most of their money.
308 Episodes
Access to accounts

Access to accounts


A new plan has been brokered to cut down on aggressive debt collection by bailiffs. Will it work amidst fears of a post-pandemic surge in debt problems? Tesco and M&S are both closing all the personal currents accounts they operate. What does this say about the role of supermarkets as financial institutions, and what should you do if you’re affected? Digital current account provider Pockit says it’s had to freeze around 1,000 accounts due to suspicious activity reports. A number of those customers say they are taking legal action to get access to their cash. And how can a pension fund you have paid into disappear as charges erode its value.? GUESTS: Joe Shalam - head of the Financial Inclusion Policy Unit at the Centre for Social Justice Peter Hahn - Emeritus professor at the London Institute of Banking & Finance Helen Saxon – banking editor at MoneySavingExpert Gina Miller – founder of the True and Fair Campaign Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Sowda Ali Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
How can our workplaces become an inclusive and fair environment for employees with a disability? If you’ve an idea or experience about job hunting, career support or staff retention e-mail now, whether you’re an employer or an employee, we’d love to hear from you. On the panel with presenter Charmaine Cozier are: • Liz Johnson, Co-Founder, The Ability People • Martin Sigsworth, Employment Manager. Thomas Pocklington Trust (TPT) • Angela Matthews, Head of Policy and Research, Business Disability Forum Presenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Alex Lewis
Frozen Out

Frozen Out


Thousands of people say they’ve been shut out of their bank accounts without warning or explanation. MPs are investigating whether innocent customers have been caught up in a crackdown on money laundering. For the first time in 25 years the one-off payment given to adult prison leavers in England and Wales is to be raised. The Prison Discharge Grant will increase from £46 to £76, but what difference will that make? Last year 155,000 people shared an extra £16m in pay after that HMRC ensured they were getting minimum wage. Plus the latest clampdown on debt packager or IVA lead generator firms GUESTS: Nicki Stopford - chief operating officer for the online complaints service Resolver. Monique Williams - Head of Delivery at Switchback, a charity for male prison leavers Clare Merrills - from HMRC Amy Taylor - Chair of the Greater Manchester Money Advice Group Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
What do you need to know about travel rights, money and insurance this summer? Adam Shaw and guests answer your questions about the practicalities and costs of travelling this year. Are you considering a summer holiday? Have you rebooked a cancelled trip? How much is a PCR test, what does the travel traffic light system mean for your insurance and how do you get the best deal on your travel money? e-mail now with your questions and stories. If you’ve just returned from a trip we’d love to hear how you got on. On the panel are: Rory Boland, Travel Editor, Which? Helen Saxon, Money Saving Expert Graeme Trudgill, British Insurance Brokers’ Association
Bereavement benefits

Bereavement benefits


More than 20,000 bereaved families can now claim financial support once restricted to married couples and civil partners. The payments worth up to £10,000 have been extended to cover all couples who lived together and claimed child benefit. Eight years ago the government said it would introduce funding for university and higher education that is comparable with the principle of Islamic finance. So when will it happen? And what should banks do to protect problem gamblers. GUESTS: Omar Shaikh - Advisory Board Member UK Islamic Finance Council Professor Sharon Collard, Research Director at the Personal Finance research Centre at the University of Bristol Danny Cheetham - anti-gambling campaigner Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
MBL: Single Parents

MBL: Single Parents


There are almost 3m lone parent families in the UK and for many the pandemic has put increased pressure on already stretched family finances. The charity Gingerbread say that single parents are more likely to have lost jobs or experienced reduced hours and falling incomes. If you’ve a question or a tip about supporting children when you separate, dealing with child maintenance payments and arrears or maximising your income, we’d love to hear from you. Or if you’ve got some advice to share about free or low cost family activities for the summer we’re all ears, e-mail to join the conversation. On the panel are: • Ros Bever, Family Lawyer, Irwin Mitchell • Victoria Benson, CEO, Gingerbread • Phil Agulnik, Director of benefits checker entitledto Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Alex Lewis
'For your protection'

'For your protection'


When banks stop you spending your own money. Barclays and Santander have banned payments to one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges while TSB may soon stop payments to all exchanges. Why tens of thousands of people could be eligible for significant refunds after the HMRC lost what could prove to be a landmark case concerning the way it deals with child benefit paid to high earners. What will change when the Financial Conduct Authority takes over regulation of pre-paid funeral plans? Using your money to make a difference – the impact that green or eco-friendly pensions can have on combating climate change. And financial lessons for cub scouts, following the launch of their Money Skills Activity Badge. GUESTS: Philippa Hann - specialist financial services litigator at Clarke Willmott solicitors Stefanie Tremain- Director at Blick Rothenburg Sheldon Mills - Executive Director for Consumers, FCA Tony Burdon – CEO Make My Money Matter Jeannie Boyle - Chartered Financial Planner and executive director of EQ Investors Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
Young entrepreneurs

Young entrepreneurs


What help and support is available to people with a business dream? How do you develop the skills you need to run your own business? We hear from some entrepreneurs about the experience of turning their ideas into reality. To share your experiences and any questions e-mail: Presenter Louise Cooper is joined by an expert panel: • Lisa Wardlaw, College Delivery Manager, Young Enterprise Scotland • Julian Hall, founder, Ultra Education • Alison Edgar, The Entrepreneur's Godmother Presenter: Louise Cooper Producer: Diane Richardson Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Alex Lewis
Google is cracking down on financial-scam adverts in the UK, but will it work? Campaigner Mark Taber tells us what needs to be done to stem the millions of pounds lost to bogus investment schemes each year. It was reported this week that the financial regulator has banned one of the biggest crypto currency exchanges from operating in the UK. Jannah Patchay, founder of Markets Evolution, and Jason Deane – a consultant for Luno, explain why those reports were wrong. Park Christmas Savings, one of the UK’s most popular savings clubs says it will review its refund policy following a Money Box investigation. And the push for Plain Numbers – why just a few small changes to the way financial information is displayed can dramatically increase customers’ understanding. Mike Ellicock explains the thinking behind his campaign. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researchers: Stefania Okereke and Anita Langary Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
Would you like to generate your electricity through a local, renewable energy project rather than buying it from a big supplier? In this episode, Adam Shaw and guests consider the costs and practicalities of setting up and running community-led energy projects, do such initiatives make financial and environmental sense? Joining Adam are: Jodie Giles, head of community and local energy at Regen Tanuja Pandit, director of Power Up North London Steve Shaw, the director of Power for People If you've a story or view to share we’d love to hear from you, e-mail Presenter: Adam Shaw Producers: Diane Richardson and Paul Waters Editor: Alex Lewis
Should the government force banks to guarantee everyone access to cash? Age UK warns that despite the rise of digital payments, millions of people still rely on cash and the charity says it should be seen as an essential service - like electricity, water, or the post. Barclays bank is to repay millions of pounds to customers miss-sold loans to pay for a timeshare scheme in Malta, but hundreds of others say they should be getting their money back too. The UK’s biggest insurance firm and a major housebuilder have agreed to refund customers who have overpaid for freeholds and ground rents. It’s a major breakthrough for some leaseholders but will the industry follow suit. And one listener tells us his story of emerging from the black hole of debt. If you've been affected by any of the issues in this programme, you can find a list of support organisations at GUESTS: Joel Lewis - Policy Manager Age UK Sian Williams - Director of Policy at the anti-poverty charity Toynbee Hall, Sebastian O’Kelly - Leasehold Knowledge Partnership Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Joe Kent Editor: Alex Lewis
MBL: Covid weddings

MBL: Covid weddings


Arranging your wedding or civil partnership during Covid can be very tricky, especially as rules and restrictions change. But what are your rights if your plans are disrupted? Can you cancel and get a refund if your guest numbers are cut, you're told not to dance, or people - perhaps close family - are not able to attend because of changes to rules? Should you expect to be able to postpone without penalty? Can venues hang on to part of what you've paid up front? Is there any point in getting wedding insurance? Our panel of experts can advise: Pran Bhanot, litigation solicitor and wedding specialist at Meaby & Co. Jemma Cox, Lead Officer for Civil Law at the Chartered Trading Standards Institute. Wedding planner Jessie Westwood of Studio Sorores, who is also part of the #WhatAboutWeddings campaign. We also hear from Hamish Shephard of the BrideBook app and our listeners' experiences. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Paul Waters Production co-ordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Alex Lewis
Thousands of people are struggling to complete the purchase of their new home before a big rise in Stamp Duty begins on the first of July in most of the UK. High street banks are told they are wrongly denying compensation to victims of fraud and they’ve been given a timetable to change their procedures. And grieving families could be paying hundreds of pounds too much for a funeral because firms do not display their prices clearly. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Dan Whitworth Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Helen Grady Editor: Alex Lewis
Low interest rates on savings has made many people consider putting money built up during the pandemic into stocks and shares in the hope of higher returns. But what do you need to know BEFORE you make that first trade? We explore the risks, how to navigate the jargon and - most importantly - whether this type of investment is really for you. Do you have an experience you'd like to share? Email us: Expert panel: - Susannah Streeter, Senior investment and markets analyst, Hargreaves Lansdown - David Stevenson author of “Investing in shares for dummies” and Adventurous Investor column, Financial Times Presenter: Charmaine Cozier Producer: Rumella Dasgupta Production co-ordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Alex Lewis
Bitcoin or Britcoin?

Bitcoin or Britcoin?


Bitcoin or Britcoin? The Bank of England has published the results of its consultation on creating a new central bank digital currency – and also the prospect of regulating other commercial digital currencies – so-called “safecoin”. We hear from the Bank’s deputy governor, Sir Jon Cunliffe and from cryptocurrency expert Kate Baucherel. Four years after the Grenfell Tower fire in which 72 people died, leaseholders living in tower blocks affected by the cladding crisis have started receiving and paying bills, sometimes for tens of thousands of pounds. The money is to pay for work to make the buildings safe. For homes in buildings under 18 metres high, which don’t qualify for a share of a £5 billion government fund, the bills can be huge. In February, Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said there would be a loan scheme to help those people pay, and that it would be capped at £50 a month. But so far there’s no sign of the loans, nor much indication of when they might appear. We hear from a leaseholder facing payment demands now. And solicitor Liam Spender, of the Leasehold Knowledge Partnership, tells us what the options are for those affected. It’s about to get easier for people with problem debt to freeze their repayments and even write off what they owe. The rules on Debt Relief Orders are changing in England and Wales at the end of this month, and will increase the number of people eligible to apply. Sam Nurse, director of the Money Advice Hub, explains the details. Presenter: Felicity Hannah Producer: Paul Waters Reporter: Dan Whitworth Researcher: Stefania Okereke
Pubs, bars, cafes and restaurants in England Wales, Northern Ireland and parts of Scotland are now open for indoor business. But there’s growing concern about the numbers of vacancies across the hospitality sector. According to trade body UK Hospitality there is a shortfall of almost 200,000 workers. If you run a hospitality business, how difficult are you finding it to get staff? Are you a worker who’s left the sector to look for employment elsewhere? Let us know your experience: In recent years the hospitality industry has seen a massive growth as more and more of our disposable income has been spent eating out. Could these staffing problems bring this trend to an abrupt end? With many hospitality businesses struggling during the pandemic - despite government support -staff have had to be laid off. Continuing lockdown uncertainty also hasn’t helped. Expert panel: Kate Nicholls - CEO at trade body UK Hospitality Gerwyn Davies - Senior Labour Market adviser at Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development Presenter: Louise Cooper Researcher: Anita Langary Producer: Rumella Dasgupta Production Co-ordinator: Janet Staples Editor: Alex Lewis
Children’s Commissioner for Wales Professor Sally Holland explains why she, along with the Commissioners for Scotland and Northern Ireland, want the DWP to drop a Universal Credit entitlement rule introduced by the coalition government in 2017. It only provides support for a maximum of two children with a few specific exceptions. Money Box reporter Joice Etutu hears from some of the thousands of people who have received random cheques from HSBC Banking Group. Amounts vary from tens to thousands of pounds. They’re still also being sent out to the group’s M&S Bank, first direct and John Lewis Finance customers who had arrears on loans between 2010 and 2019. Many thought it was a scam, but it’s not. EU citizens who want to continue living in the UK are in danger of missing a crucial deadline which could see them lose access to benefits and the right to work. June the 30th is the last date to apply for the EU settlement scheme which allows people to retain their legal status post Brexit. However there’s concern many won’t realise they have to do it. Guest: Kate Smart, Chief Executive of the charity Settled. The ban on bailiff-enforced evictions in England was an emergency measure to protect renters in arrears related to the pandemic. It ended this week so where does that leave renters who are still having money problems and what other changes might be on the way for them - and their landlords? Meera Chindooroy, Deputy Director of Campaigns, Public Affairs & Policy for the National Residential Landords Association and Chris Wood Assistant Director of Policy at Shelter discuss. Presenter: Paul Lewis Reporter: Joice Etutu Researcher: Stefania Okereke Producer: Charmaine Cozier Editor: Alex Lewis
What are you rights when making a complaint? How do you make sure you escalate your grievance to the right person? What difference can social media make in getting your grumble seen and sorted? Adam Shaw is joined by Martyn James from Resolver, a free, independent issue resolution service. and Alicia Alinia , Managing Director, Consumer Legal Services at the law firm, Slater & Gordon. Producer Smita Patel Editor Alex Lewis
A Money Box listener has been refused work by two employers because he was unable to provide his National Insurance Number despite the Department for Work and Pensions saying individuals can start work without one. Last year we reported that people coming to the UK with the right to work weren’t able to obtain a National Insurance Number because the government had stopped issuing them. People can now apply - but that process takes up to 16 weeks and trying to get work in the meantime can be tough. Paul Lewis talks to Jonathan Reynolds MP, Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions. National Savings & Investments apologises to more than 14,000 customers after it changed the terms and conditions on a savings product without telling them. We hear from Gary Rycroft, a partner at Joseph A Jones solicitors. The regulator clamps down on insurance firms who cut prices for new customers while quietly increasing them for loyal ones. Michael Sicsic, managing director of financial services consultancy Sicsic Advisory, and a former head of supervision for general insurance at the FCA explains all. And this week a judge rejected a 'scheme of arrangement' offer by Amigo Loans Limited to missold customers. What happens now? Paul talks to Sara Williams, founder of the debt advice website Debt Camel. Presenter: Paul Lewis Researcher: Sowda Ali Production co-ordinator: Brenda Brown Reporter: Dan Whitworth Producer: Ben Carter Editor: Alex Lewis



Apprenticeships allow you to earn money as you study for qualifications and gain practical experience on the job. There's a wide range of careers and industries to choose from but a recent Ofsted report said that 10% of apprenticeships are inadequate, so how do you find a good quality scheme to help you develop the skills you need to succeed? On Wednesday's programme Adam Shaw speaks to apprentices and employers about their experiences and ambitions and we'd love to hear from you too. If you're interested in becoming an apprentice or you're an employer who'd like to hire apprentices e-mail now. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Diane Richardson Editor: Emma Rippon
Comments (7)


only scratching the surface

Jan 1st

Sim Simma

Thanks 🙏

Jan 3rd

civil base

thats a gud info ... but do you have any idea that how to reduce energy bills in sub continent ?

Apr 28th
Reply (1)

Yên Mai

yes tank

Apr 20th

Madan Johan Madan

Very good

Oct 29th

Firoz Khan


Sep 7th
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