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July 4, 2010 5:19 AM   Subscribe

Looking for a UK- or Europe-based bank that DOES NOT have branches in the US.

Sorry for the all caps, just thought this question would be easy to misread. Long story here, but I'll keep it short. I'm looking for a bank that does not have branches in the US.
posted by metametababe to Work & Money (11 answers total)
Natwest afaik.
posted by katrielalex at 5:36 AM on July 4, 2010

UK only answer here.

First Direct doesn't have branves anywhere. It is owned by HSBC though. Other internet banks include Cahoot (Santander) and Egg (Citi).

Since demutualisation, there are several UK banks that used to be provincial building societies and are now banks. E.g. Northern Rock. Some building societies, like Nationwide, essentially operate link banks. It's your call if they qualify as a "bank."

Where things get complicated is if you consider a branch of the parent company to be a branch of the bank in question. E.g. Halifax is owned by Lloyds Banking Group now.

To my knowledge, The Clydesdale Bank and The Yorkshire Bank (both owned by National Australia Bank) don't have branches in the US.

There is also the Co-operative Bank (and its internet arm,, which aren't in the US.

Finally, the (UK) Post Office operates National Investment and Savings. It has no branches in the US.
posted by MuffinMan at 5:41 AM on July 4, 2010

Christ, my spelling:

branves = branches
link = like
posted by MuffinMan at 5:43 AM on July 4, 2010

As far as I know, most (all?) UK retail banks are part of larger financial services groups, which at the least will have interests, if not branches, in the U.S.

The exceptions are the Co-op and Building Societies.
posted by caek at 6:02 AM on July 4, 2010

Deutschebank is pretty much all over Europe. Don't know about the UK, though.
posted by elizardbits at 6:49 AM on July 4, 2010

Deutschebank has a branch in New York.
posted by leotrotsky at 7:00 AM on July 4, 2010

Deutschebank is in New York and other major US cities.

Frankly, most banks of any size in the UK will either have a US branch or two or be connected to a larger corporate entity with branches in the US. I'm not sure what the intent of the question is here (evading the PATRIOT act?) but this is something you should keep in mind.
posted by dfriedman at 7:41 AM on July 4, 2010

In case it's relevant,

There is no way to move money using SWIFT/BIC routing numbers that does not flow through the US government's sphere of monitoring.

My bank in Ireland has a prominent warning notice in the middle of the branch telling you that they are unable to secure the details of your transaction from being watched by the United States. The European Union has declared the process illegal, and may have to force all EU banks out of SWIFT entirely soon, after half a decade of it still not being fixed.
posted by genghis at 10:21 AM on July 4, 2010 [1 favorite]

If it is not about the issues genghis describes above, Triodos may be an option. They are originally Dutch and they now also do business in Germany, Spain and the U.K.

Full disclosure: My brother works for the Dutch branch.
posted by PaulZ at 1:50 PM on July 4, 2010

posted by ethnomethodologist at 2:24 PM on July 4, 2010

The IBB has no branches outside the UK and has no parent company, afaik. It's not a standard bank though, if that's what you're looking for.
posted by the latin mouse at 3:51 PM on July 4, 2010

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