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Barclays customers complain to ombudsman

Independent Financial Ombudsman Service has begun to receive complaints from investors unhappy with new Barclays Smart Investor website.

 
Barclays customers complain to ombudsman

The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) has confirmed it has received complaints from Barclays stockbroking clients as the saga of its new Smart Investor platform continues.

The FOS, which investigates consumer grievances once they have exhausted the internal complaints procedure of financial service providers, said it has received a ‘small number’ of complaints from Barclays customers regarding the transfer of their assets from the old system to the new Smart Investor platform.

The ombudsman would not clarify the nature of the complaints, stating only that they were transfer-based, or the exact number of complaints but said it was ‘in double digits’. Barclays Stockbrokers is understood to be working with the FOS on the complaints.

Since the launch of the Smart Investor platform - which ties up the stockbroking platform with online banking - over the August bank holiday it has been dogged by problems. Customers complained about being unable to log in to their accounts, experiencing error codes, and others were unhappy with the new look and unable to see daily price changes and access contract notes.

There were further tensions as customers were faced with telephone helpline queues of up to two hours and the ‘live chat’ function went down as 200,000 accounts and £14 billion of assets were moved.

Although Barclays has urged customers to give the website another try and pointed out that the quality was the same as the old stockbroking platform, some investors have already started to leave the UK’s third largest online stockbroker.

Rival platforms have already reported a significant increase in the number of clients transferring from Barclays.

Bestinvest told Citywire Money last month that the number of accounts coming across from Barclays Stockbrokers this year was already 7.5 times higher than the figure seen during the whole of 2016.

AJ Bell, TD Direct (which is now part of Interactive Investor) and Hargreaves Lansdown also reported an increase in transfers from Barclays customers.

However, the process of transferring away has not been easy due to the volume of transfers taking place. The fact that some customers have not received log-in details for the new platform meant they were stuck in ‘limbo’, one platform source, who wished to remain anonymous said, stuck without being able to log-on or transfer away.

A Barclays spokeswoman said: ‘We recognise that moving customers to our new Smart Investor platform caused additional effort for them and we apologise to anyone who experienced any inconvenience.

‘The service is working well and we would encourage any customer who has concerns to contact us.’

45 comments so far. Why not have your say?

Micawber

Oct 27, 2017 at 09:58

The quality is not the same as the earlier platform, it offers less, and the overall charges are greater. But the login security is better IMO. I'll be moving when the dust settles: II/TD's imminent charging structure is better and so are the facilities and research.

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JC via mobile

Oct 27, 2017 at 10:06

Todate I have still not yet received the login information. I have spent hours trying to resolve the issue and was advised that until I had my new account details there was nothing that could be done despite providing my old account details. My account was transferred from Charles Schwab some 20 years ago! I have lost numerous trading opportunities, wasted needless Time, incurred unjustified Expense and suffered unwanted Stress. Please add me to the FO list of dissatisfied clients

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Ermintrade

Oct 27, 2017 at 15:46

I agree - the easy functionality of the old site has definitely not been replaced. I have stuck with Smart Investor for now, but unless the charges become more competitive, I will join the exodus.

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Peter Hogg

Oct 27, 2017 at 15:46

I waited nearly 2 years with letters about the transfer and then read that people had been transferred in August. I had heard nothing so phoned them a few weeks ago. Was told my account was one of several that hasnt been transferred for a reason they do not know and that it will not be transferred. I cannot deal on the account and can only close it...Useless..

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mike8man

Oct 27, 2017 at 16:22

I told Barclays in June where I wanted my SIPP moving to, which Barclays had decided along with many other types of accounts to be kicked out of their downgraded service, that with luck it might be moved sometime next week!! - 5 months - utter incompetence!! Other brokers have moved my accounts previously in just a weekend.

I fell sorry for all the old Barclays Stockbroker competent employees who having been dumped on with a far inferior platform who will be made redundant due to the exodus of clients.

I gave the new platform a try but yesterday instructed another broker to transfer my two remaining accounts.

Its hard to count the dozens of failings with the downgraded platform - it reminds me of the cigarette advertising slogan way back when, of a picture of a man in a rain coat (as it was raining) and the slogan: 'you're never alone with a strand'. That brand disappeared very quickly afterwards.

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Stephen Mulliner

Oct 27, 2017 at 16:47

Sadly, I agree. The functionality of the Smart Investor platform is poorer than the Barclays Stockbrokers website which I used happily for many years for my SIPP, ISA and MarketMaster accounts. It makes one wonder about the quality of management that thought it was sensible to evict the International Trader and Pension Trader clients and then to impose a less user-friendly alternative for ISA and MarketMaster customers.

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Anthony Tinslay

Oct 27, 2017 at 17:13

Just received the second letter after 8 weeks advising that they still investigating my complaint and "inviting" me to refer to the Ombudsman. Pointless as I cannot point to any financial loss and service quality is not their real interest.

Like others above I will bide my time in the probably vain hope that it will all be reversed. In the meantime I have put them on notice that I will not agree to any increase in fees until I am happy with their response.. Will no doubt be quite a while before any ombudsman's views are known

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Jay Mi

Oct 27, 2017 at 19:58

"pointed out that the quality was the same as the old stockbroking platform"

Are they looking at a different website?

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GBS

Oct 27, 2017 at 20:08

Barclays stockbrokers asked me to close my account and gave them my new brokerage account to effect the transfer. After 5 months they failed to do so. No update despite several follow up. I contacted the Ombudsman office. No reply to date. So frustrating I cannot have access to my account!

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Roger Savage

Oct 27, 2017 at 20:12

If there was a contest between a chocolate teapot and the Financial Ombudsman, the teapot would have it.

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Paul Hutchings

Oct 27, 2017 at 20:16

I agree with previous comments...

Barclays, try the SI platform for yourselves !

It's utter BS that you believe it comparable to the former BS site...

I too will be off when the fan is finally clean !!

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Eileen Abell

Oct 27, 2017 at 22:53

I totally agree with all the comments about the appalling loss of functionality of the new Smart Investor website compared to the Barclays Stockbroker site. I have complained (1st week in Sept) and have now received an anodyne reply by letter urging me to try the site regularly for updates (well, I haven't seen many yet, on a daily basis), together with a nice chap phoning me with assurances that all will be well (to that effect, anyway). I am not prepared to be "off market" for the time it appears to be taking to transfer my share portfolio elsewhere until the Barclays exodus subsides, so I am reluctantly sticking with the Smart Investor platform with all it's shortcomings for the time being/ Since I have not actually suffered any financial loss I feel I cannot really have grounds to complain to the Ombudsman, but I would encourage others to voice their complaints if possible!

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Steve L. Jones

Oct 28, 2017 at 00:51

I can think of one way, and only one, for Barclays to get itself--and its customers--out of the shambles that it has created for itself, and forced on them. "Smart Investor" is in fact cumbersome, slow-slow-slow, lacking in many bits of vital information for the account-holder--just look at the long litany of customers' complaints about this and that detail published on the net or (eg) Investors Chronicle--and quite often, it seems, simply inaccurate on top. In short, a total, hopeless, pointless and probably irredeemable mess.

The old platform was not perfect, but it was far, far more user-friendly in many ways, as customers have recorded. So what is to be done?

Answer: scrap "Smart Investor" entirely, every bit of it, NOW, and bring back the Marketmaster platform entirely ,NOW, every bit of it, even its faults (which were easily remediable if anyone at Barclays had cared, and could be put right once it was operating again).

I've no idea how much Barclays has hurled into the bottomless shambles of "Smart Investor", or of how much it would have to pay to restore the old platform, one that actually worked, that investors liked and were happy to use. But compare those costs with the damage to Barclays' reputation that the new platform has already inflicted and will continue to inflict; with the already ongoing and future loss of customers, and the improbability that new ones will replace them in any significant number: and I believe that Barclays would in fact gain by taking my advice. And if a few executive heads had to roll, that, on the available evidence from the response to "Smart Investor", would be no loss at all.

Not that I expect Barclays to take any notice of my amateur advice. No company and no management like admitting that they have created a total balls-up. But there's a sound piece of general wisdom: if you've dug yourself into a deep, deep hole, stop digging and climb out.

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Daniel Prior

Oct 28, 2017 at 10:08

The new interface and functionality are a joke and I immediately decided to move over to a provider that provides a more professional and focused service rather than the tinker toy experience offered by the new Barclays. True to the new service ethos Barclays are taking an inordinately long time to execute the transfer of my accounts.

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Bruce Davidson

Oct 28, 2017 at 10:36

@Eileen: You shouldn't need to be out of the market to transfer somewhere else. Pick a new platform and ask them to arrange an "in specie" transfer of your account from Barclays, you'll stay invested and your funds/shares will just move across to your new platform. Barclays must offer this under the rules and these days it's normally pretty quick and easy (less so for pensions). If Barclays normally charge a fee for this suspect phoning them up to complain will get it waived.

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Anonymous 1 needed this 'off the record'

Oct 28, 2017 at 10:37

Having spoken to Alastair Thaw and some of the team a few weeks back, I managed to get some degree of comfort that they are working on resolving the issues and they were addressing the concerns.

Apparently the old platform was unstable whereas this new chunky unfriendly one is fully compliant for new upcoming changes in legislation. That will be their rationale for sticking with the model they now have.

So I guess even though customer feedback has been totally negative (even the Barclays team people I spoke to admitted the system takes some getting used to ) , they are going to persevere despite the exodus of clients. To admit the project has been a massive expensive failure is tantamount to writing your own letter of resignation.

The lack of any improvement though since I spoke to them 5 weeks ago shows me that the top management how deep in the sand. Even a simple newsletter updating what they were doing to turnaround this unmitigated disaster would be helpful.

I reality the chances of getting all old functionality back (eg: downloading account histories to Excel, showing stock listings on one page instead of blocks of individual holdings , return to buying on T2) is never going to happen.

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imteyaz khan

Oct 28, 2017 at 11:05

The worst thing about the new Barclays smart investor site is that we can't see daily price change unless i go through series of three or four steps. It is also not possible to click on a particular share and see live price as it was possible with old website. With other stock brokers the portfolio shows daily change and possible to click on a particular share to get live price. This is very complicated website which makes it difficult to make decision to buy and sell

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Steve L. Jones

Oct 28, 2017 at 11:10

"Writing their own letter of resignation" (Anonymous, Oct 28) is exactly what those to blame for this total, hopeless shambles should be doing, if Barclays does not do it for them.

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Steve L. Jones

Oct 28, 2017 at 11:19

I trust my latest comment, a few minutes ago, and a long one preceding it late on October 27, which "Anonymous"--see above--may be alluding to, will actually become visible? Or have I become an unperson after all? (On top of being a Barclays' customer, I mean, which is quite enough for one man...).

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David Potter via mobile

Oct 28, 2017 at 11:31

Big companies ability to screw up IT migrations never ceases to amaze me. The failure to realise that customer calls might increase after the august bank holiday was staggering. I kept getting an error message telling me I had NO investments that could be accessed on this platform, scary that hundreds of thousands of pounds had gone missing. It as only when I escalated matters to a senior contact that I got access to my account after a week. I am now locked out again because of two mistyped attempts to gain access and I will be unable to access for ten days as they can only give me a new passcode by mail and I am abroad. Trying to amalgamate holdings of Aberdeen Asset Management and Standard Life held elsewhere will end up taking about 3 months. From all I hear it makes sense to wait a few more weeks to leave to have any chance of the transfer going smoothly.

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richz

Oct 28, 2017 at 12:33

Agree with all the negative comments about the new, infinitely worse, Barclays platform. The new contract notes are a joke and defy commonsense if you deal more than once in a day. A blank piece of paper with a contract note on the back which has not even the identityof the client on it. This happens if you deal twice.If you deal more than twice more problems arise with as many as two contracts on both sides of the paper but again no client identity . Such contracts are not possible to file without photocopying and mannually adding the client name. After dealing thousands of times with many brokers I have never seen such an ill designed nonsense. i trust that Barclays will not be charging management fees until they offer a better service or perhaps I too,like Barclays, live in fantasy land.

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John Prendergast

Oct 28, 2017 at 13:09

Very much agree with above comments. It was a nightmare and took one month of effort to get my passcode. My stock listing now takes 10 rather than 1 page to print and even then you have to go through many more steps it you want to see the details to update your share values. Did anyone in Barclays try the system out before it was imposed on everyone? Like others I intend to move when the dust settles.I pity the poor workers dealing with the management mess!

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W.h.westlake

Oct 28, 2017 at 15:39

I have to completely agree with all comments.

It is a shambles of a web site with so much white wasted space on each page.

An excellent point on the contract notes with no names printed

Barclays should completely re design the system and go back to something like the old site

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Stephen B.

Oct 28, 2017 at 15:42

I expect to start transferring in a couple of weeks, I don't see any reason to think that things will get better and this is generally the quietest period in the year, so probably better to be locked out now than later.

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Daniel Prior

Oct 28, 2017 at 18:01

I started the transfer process over 6 weeks ago and only part of one account has been moved. I see no point in complaining to their customer call centre people, it is unfair on them for what is a strategic and executive level screw up. To my mind Barclays have decided to abandon the investing customers for bank account holders who may want a couple of funds.

Their website is of no use to someone who has a portfolio to manage and needs to monitor and research holdings. The interface is typical of the iPad style where white space is more important than the information content and takes many more interactions to get to necessary information than the original system. A few tweaks will not fix this, the root of the problem is the decision to switch to a different customer base.

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Paul Hutchings

Oct 28, 2017 at 18:20

After posting on this blog and a previous one and reading ALL the comments, I note NOT ONE person has come to Barclays defence. Apart from Barclays.

A poster above states Barclays personnel say "the system takes some getting used to" Fair enough, no one likes change but hang on this iplatform impossible to use quickly.

I already had a H Lansdown account running side by side with B Stockbrokers.

Nearly always, I would log on to BS for ease of use and I had even set up my BS virtual portfolio which had my HL stocks in, that was how simple the site was.

Now I've completely reversed that action. I look on HL for Smart Investor stocks on their virtual portfolio.

It's over 8 weeks & im still not getting used to SI, have also not seen any changes made to address the shortcomings.

It's almost as if this site was designed by a 10 year old......for well....10 year olds !!!

Anonymous says Barclays will persevere with this, I think he/she is right, so folks, don't moan moving forward - vote with your feet.

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David Harmes

Oct 29, 2017 at 21:23

I have another theory that some well intentioned manager asked why Barclays were paying all that money to Digital Look and couldn’t they save this by designing and running the site themselves while obtaining a feed of the stock market data from Morningstar?

Little did they know that Digital Look developed their site over many years in close association with the investment community. As part of the separation agreement they wouldn’t have been able to copy the look and feel of the Digital Look site and hence the abortion we have now.

Well done Barclays. You saved a few million pounds but you have already lost the goodwill of your customers.

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Steve L. Jones

Oct 31, 2017 at 08:02

A note on the post by "Anonymous 1" above, dated October 28th. He records gathering from Barclays that "the old platform was unstable" whereas the new one (I omit the adjectives he rightly applies to it) "is fully compliant for new upcoming changes in legislation." Me, I found the old platform perfectly stable, if less-than-perfect in its design. Whereas my one or two efforts to make use of Dumb Investor showed it--its grotesque design faults apart--to be electronically about as stable as a will o' the wisp on a boggy peat moor. Click for X and within seconds it had jumped, unasked, to Y or Z.

As for being compliant with future changes in legislation, well, thanks, but how about being compliant with the minimum present requirements of present investors? An earlier poster summed it up as "no use to someone who has a portfolio to manage and needs to monitor and research holdings." How right he was. In my view, almost any investor, however new to stockmarkets, must pretty soon feel those needs. Too bad that the genii of Barclays higher management didn't notice it. I wonder how many new customers they'll pick up. Has anybody met, or even heard of, even one?

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mike8man

Nov 11, 2017 at 15:41

There are obviously a lot of active share traders on this blog, so I'm wondering if any of you would be interested in joining our monthly Wednesday afternoon meetings near Sudbury Town tube station with lots of free parking. We don't invest collectively or discuss the value of our investments but may discuss percentages gained or lost and of course we talk about markets, want we have bought and sold and the software and brokers we use - all collectively useful stuff. We have lunch at the venue followed by a 3 hour meeting in a private room. Let me know if you are interested

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Anthony Tinslay

Nov 11, 2017 at 17:58

Have just has a long and friendly call from a gentlemen at Smart Investor about my "complaint", although I never used the word. After the rather odd start when he wanted my security info before he would speak and I wanted his security info as he called me and it could have been a scam, we got on well - he had been brought in to deal with outstanding complaint and was not regular Barclays staff. After much discussion he offered me £100 compensation for the initial problems and a further £100 as my "complaint" had not been dealt with within the required target of 8 weeks. He did tell me that someone monitors all these blogs and that they are inundated with work related to the Smart Investor - not least of which is the 8 to 10 weeks time they are taking to deal with transfers away from Barclays. I told him that like many others I was not rushing to move away but biding my time to see what sort of apoolgy and changes Barclays might make and could move away at a time when it would all be dealt with much quicker. Wonder what other people's experience is I do not hide behind my name..

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Eileen Abell

Nov 11, 2017 at 22:24

Reply to Anthony Tinsley:

I, too, had a similar experience with a nice-sounding guy from Smart Investor; also, like you, I was offered £100 which I accepted as I had lost no money, just time and frustration with their awful site. However, that was over a month ago and although he assured me they would be making regular improvements to the site, nothing appears to have changed. Are we all being taken for complete fools?

I am gradually liquidating my portfolio of shares with them (I have no ISAs etc, just straight traded shares on the FTSE 100), so will re-invest with another broker rather than wait 8+ weeks being out of the market if I were to try to transfer via Barclays. Some of my shares will be sold at a loss, but I consider it more prudent than being out of the market for that long! Either way I am going to be OUT of Barclays before my patience runs out over their ludicrously named Smart Investor rubbish site.

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Paul Hutchings

Nov 12, 2017 at 07:49

Eileen.

Consider selling / liquidating your current stocks at the best time for you.

By this I mean, it may be prudent, depending on stock held and amount, to wait until any up coming divi payments have been earned.

Obviously selling price is a consideration for you, but to lose out on a decent divi that we mostly wait 3 or 6 months for might not be a food move.

So, timing is the key.

Hopefully, jusdging by your previous posts, I think you mentioned you were retired or of that age, and your full experience of life you have this covered already.

I'm still waiting for this all to die down then I will transfer.

Have you decided on another platform you will be using post dumb Investor ?

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Paul Hutchings

Nov 12, 2017 at 07:51

Eileen,

"FOOD MOVE" ???? (GOOD)

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Steve L. Jones

Nov 12, 2017 at 18:06

If Barclays offers me £100, I shall not accept. Why not? First, trivially, because I can live without an extra £100. Second, and importantly, I've no doubt that they are hoping to buy people's silence at an individual and overall peanuts price. Do not be taken in.

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Eileen Abell

Nov 12, 2017 at 18:29

Reply to Steve L Jones:

Sadly I accepted the £100 because I was so disgusted and patronised with their new dumb-investor site that I had already decided to move my shares elsewhere and move on by NOT going down their prolonged transfer route. I agree with you that people younger than me should resist Barclay's efforts at "buying people's silence", but since I am 72 and need to liquidate a few shares at present anyway, I'm doing that by selling judiciously (mindful of not missing any juicy dividends of course), until Barclays no longer hold any of my money or shares. That should tell them I am dissatisfied and is enough for me. Incidentally, my preference for an alternative platform would be A J Bell, but I haven't made any moves in that direction as yet apart from investigating their site thoroughly!

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Stephen B.

Nov 12, 2017 at 18:31

I don't see why it should be buying silence, there isn't likely to be any gagging clause. At most it's buying you off from complaining to the regulator, but that's likely to be a lot of hassle for little gain.

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Stephen B.

Nov 12, 2017 at 18:41

Also, it's true that £100 isn't that significant - but my biggest objection to the new regime is the £200 a year fee, and equally that isn't really about the absolute amount but the fact that it's completely out of line with other providers and hence if I accept it they're making a fool of me.

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Eileen Abell

Nov 12, 2017 at 22:11

I am not entirely convinced that I would be charged £200 p/a now as I haven't been told that in my communications with them, also that I am only on the basic share-dealing non-advisory service. However, Barclays Stockbrokers' dealing charges weren't exorbitant and neither are the new DumbInvestor charges. That wasn't my objection; it was the infantile substitution of a perfectly serviceable site which I had used for at least 15 years or more.

I am too old to be bothered to pursue this with the Ombudsman or any Regulator, (I am still working, in the NHS),I just want my shares out of Barclays inept hands and their inaccurate website. I'll leave it up to the rest of you to voice your complaints thence and will support you all the way!

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Steve L. Jones

Nov 13, 2017 at 01:15

Steven B: I agree with you that there won't be any gagging clause. But if ever push comes to shove I'd bet their lawyers will argue "Well you took £100 in compensation, Mr B, and now you want more...!". Meanwhile, you surely don't really suppose that Barclays is genuinely sorry and simply wants to compensate you for the ill-effects of their barmy new system?--that one whose huge merits they advertised to you (and me) at endless length before they shoved it on you? With no other motive? I sure don't. I imagine they hope--quite rationally--that fewer victims will go public with complaints. I agree no single complaint to the regulators et al is going to bring much but wasted hours of labour to anyone. But if enough of Barclays' victims raise Cain, something useful might yet happen (OK, "might", I'm not holding my breath).

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Stephen B.

Nov 13, 2017 at 10:50

Of course they aren't genuinely sorry, but the only solution at this point is to move away, compensation doesn't really come into it at all. I haven't done that yet because I wanted to wait for the rush to die down a bit, and also markets can sometimes be volatile in October, but I'll probably start the move next week. Publicity isn't going to make much difference, this is too small a part of Barclays' overall business to affect them as a company. Also, even if Barclays wanted to change things in a meaningful way it's probably too late - I doubt there's any possibility of going back to the old system and many of the customers have either left already or are committed to going, so there isn't much alternative for them but to plough on making small improvements like daily price moves. On the charging structure I have no idea what their freedom of movement is, but if they were going to change it I think they'd have done it by now, or at least waived the fees while they decide - the more of the HNW clients leave the less point there is in reducing the charge to keep them.

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Steve L. Jones

Nov 13, 2017 at 13:14

Steven B: Not so sure that publicity will have no effect on Barclays. They can't welcome being publicly shown up as the dimwitted incompetents they are. Not that I imagine for a second that they will do the only sensible thing and scrap Dumb Investor completely.

So I agree, go elsewhere. You sound like more sophisticated investor than I am. If you have decided where to go instead, perhaps you should tell us which of the various choices you think best.

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Stephen B.

Nov 13, 2017 at 16:40

Banks have had no end of bad publicity in the last few years, this is small beer in comparison!

I'll be moving my ISA to HL. I already have an account with them so there's no incremental charge, and they're large and financially stable so relatively little chance that they'll run into trouble. Also their entire business is investment so possibly less chance of them messing up in the way Barclays have as it would destroy the whole company.

On the other hand I'm a bit wary of having most of my eggs in one basket, so the non-ISA holdings will go to iweb, and if I like what I see they'll get my future ISA subscriptions. I had intended to do that first, but unfortunately one of my holdings is currently frozen as Barclays' system incorrectly things it's still the subject of a corporate action which ended two months ago - currently the subject of a formal complaint but no resolution (or offer of compensation!) so far.

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Stephen B.

Nov 13, 2017 at 16:45

By the way, one thing which may cause trouble in transferring the ISA is a placeholder for a former holding in the 3i Bioscience investment trust, which went into liquidation in about 2005 - either the liquidation is still not formally complete or Barclays' system has never registered that it is. Does anyone know what happened there?

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Anthony Tinslay

Nov 13, 2017 at 18:30

Oh dear I seem to have started something with mentioning the telephone call offering me compensation. It was very simple - £100 for the initial hassle and frustration that was the subject of my letter and another £100r compensation for Barclays not responding within the 8 weeks.. No gagging suggested or would have been accepted. No point in going the Ombudsman route unless an actual financial loss caused by Barclays and they of course would charge Barclays more than £100 just to follow up. Barclays man I spoke to actually confirmed that this in no way could or would stop me transferring my account away when the dust settles. However he did indicate that certain albeit minor changes are likely before too long.

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Eileen Abell

Nov 20, 2017 at 18:05

I have yet another gripe about SmartInvestor: for some reason last Friday I was summarily logged out (could be my slow village internet...) so I tried logging in again, accurately, for 3 times. Then I was told in red type that my account had been denied access as I had tried more than 3 times! I immediately rang the offshore "helpline", had a long job explaining (after answering all security so they had access to my a/c details) to someone who didn't speak very good English, what the problem was and why I needed to access my trading a/c as I wanted to trade shares over the weekend.

Unbelievably he told me he could reset my passcode ONLY via snail-mail! No facility to get me back online, either by an email to change it or by phone, only to actually do any trades by phone (which I would never do and haven't signed up for it as too insecure).

I still haven't received anything by post today (Monday) although my other post arrived this morning. I phoned again this afternoon and was put through, after a 25 minute wait, to a girl with a Scottish accent this time, who reiterated very sharply that I had to wait for a letter via the postal service to change my passcode!

This is ridiculous in this day and age, also that I have had to be "out of the market" for two working days (4 days if you count online Limit Orders I would have made over the weekend). Let's hope the post comes in early tomorrow morning before I miss my chance to trade! (Incidentally, when I open the SmartInvestor site it does come up with my membership number before I try to login - so much for their "security" - as anyone could see and note that from the web-page.

I am still proceeding to sell all my holdings through them, though, as a quicker resolution to waiting 8 weeks or longer to transfer to another stockbroking site. I am losing enough money through doing this as it is, as some of my holdings are being sold at a small loss, however it's better than staying with the useless SmartInvestor playground effort that Barclays came up with.

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