Socially responsible savings account launched

Charity Bank in the North has launched a savings account for businesses in Yorkshire and Humberside that want to invest in their communities as part of their corporate social responsibility programmes.

The Yorkshire Deposit Bond, which was launched at a business reception in Leeds earlier this week, offers interest rates of between 2 and 4 per cent over a fixed 12-month period.

The bank’s regional director, Tim Foggin, said the relatively low rates meant companies would have to sacrifice some financial return on their funds for a greater social return.

“We have a mission to transform the perception – and use – of finance, making every saver and investor a ‘social investor’,” he said. “Imagine what kinds of funds could be made available if every individual or organisation in the UK allocated just 0.5 per cent of their savings to investing in their communities.”

The reception also encouraged businesses to sign up to Charity Bank in the North’s business advisory network. The bank plans to sign up volunteer business experts to give practical support to local community enterprises, as well as to Charity Bank itself.

Local regional development agency Yorkshire Forward has invested £10m in the bank, which was officially launched last month. Its chair, Terry Hodgkinson, said: “With the support of the business community in Yorkshire and Humber, Charity Bank in the North will help community organisations work out what they need to do, and give them the tools to grow.”

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