Canadians' Favourite Bank Isn't One Of The Big Five

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When Canadians were asked to name their favourite bank, they didn't choose one of the Big Five.

No, their choice was a bank that operates mostly online, with few fees and no minimum account balances.

tangerine bank
Signage of Tangerine on the facade of a building in Toronto. (Photo: Roberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Tangerine scored the highest of all choices in the J.D. Power 2016 Canadian Retail Banking Satisfaction Study, which was released Thursday.

The scores were based on a survey of over "13,000 customers who use a primary financial institution for personal banking," said a news release.

It separated banks into two categories: the Big Five, and midsize institutions.

Tangerine led the midsize bank category with a score of 840, the highest that any institution attained in either group.

It was followed in the midsize category by President's Choice Financial (789), National Bank of Canada (767) and ATB Financial (766).

All of them scored better than any institution in the Big Five. The top bank in this category was Royal Bank of Canada, with 765. It was followed by TD Canada Trust with 761, Bank of Montreal (BMO) with 760, CIBC with 754, and Scotiabank with 753.

royal bank of canada
A Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) logo is seen on Bay Street in the heart of the financial district in Toronto on Jan. 22, 2015. (Photo: Mark Blinch/Reuters)

Customers were asked to rate their satisfaction with the banks according to seven factors: product; self-service; personal service; facilities; communication; financial advisor; and problem resolution.

J.D. Power said the results show that satisfaction has improved despite increasing bank fees.

It noted that 25 per cent of customers with the Big Five banks noticed a change in their fees, while 16 per cent noticed that whole new fees had been applied to their accounts.

The study came just over a month after media reported that major banks were raking in billions of dollars in profits as they raised fees on their customers.

Institutions raising their fees included TD Canada Trust, which instituted a $75 fee for customers who wanted to transfer their tax-free savings accounts (TFSA) to other banks, even as it took in $2.052 billion in the second quarter — up from $1.850 billion in the same period a year prior.

Toronto Star finance editor Adam Mayers said in March that banks were "looking under every rock" to keep their profits up.

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