The country’s largest lender, State Bank of India, on Monday reduced the monthly average balance (MAB) for savings banks accounts in metro areas to Rs 3,000 from Rs 5,000 earlier. The MAB for urban, semi-urban and rural areas remains unchanged at Rs 3,000, Rs 2,000 and Rs 1,000, respectively. The revised MAB requirement and charges will become applicable from October 1, the bank said in a statement. The bank also reduced the charges for non-maintenance of monthly average balance. “For non-maintenance of MAB, the charges have also been revised downward ranging from 20% to 50% across all population groups and categories,” SBI said in a notification.
The charges at semi-urban and rural centres will range between Rs 20 and Rs 40, compared with Rs 20 and Rs 75 at present. At urban and metro centres, it will range between Rs 30 and Rs 50, compared with Rs 40 and Rs 100 at present. SBI has 42 crore savings bank accounts, of which 13 crore accounts fall under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana and Basic Savings Bank Deposit Accounts (BSBD). These accounts are exempt from charges for non-maintenance of MAB. In addition, the bank has now decided to exempt pensioners, beneficiaries of social benefits from the government and accounts of minors from these charges. The above revision is likely to benefit another 5 crore account holders. Customers also have the option of converting the regular savings bank account to BSBD accounts if they want to avail basic savings bank facilities without having to maintain MAB, the bank said.