Bank group working to fix problems
A banking group has said it is "working round the clock" to fix technical problems for NatWest customers before the weekend begins.
Large numbers of customers have been affected by the hitches since Wednesday, and Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) Group said that many will still only see Thursday's balances showing up on their accounts on Friday.
Angry customers have vented their frustration about the problems, which are also affecting Royal Bank of Scotland and Ulster Bank users, with some finding that they had supermarket deliveries stopped and others having holidays or home purchases disrupted.
Account balances are not being updated properly overnight, meaning that credit and debit payments are not showing up as quickly as they should, although an RBS Group spokeswoman said the money is "in the system".
She said that even if people go into their branch, they may not see the most up-to-date information on their balances, although staff are "geared up" to help customers who are having problems using their accounts.
Fears have been raised that thousands of customers could be hit with penalty charges if their regular household bill payments such as mortgage payments are affected. The banking group has promised that no one will be out of pocket and the spokeswoman said that anyone who incurs such a penalty as a result of the problems should contact their branch.
Asked if the problems would be resolved by the weekend, the RBS Group spokeswoman said: "Our technicians are working round the clock. It is obviously a priority. That's what we're hoping to achieve."
NatWest has more than 7.5 million personal banking customers, but the spokeswoman said it was difficult to say how many have been affected as it was not possible to know when they were expecting payments into their accounts. However, Ulster Bank said that around 100,000 of its customers have been affected by the same issues.
A statement placed by NatWest on its website on Friday told customers: "Unfortunately we are once again experiencing technical issues with our systems and account balances have not updated properly overnight. This means where money has gone into a customer's account, there may be a delay in it appearing on their balance.
"We can assure our customers that this problem is strictly of a technical nature and we continue to work hard to resolve this. We also recognise this is an unacceptable inconvenience for our customers, for which we apologise."