Bank Accidentally Sends $176 Million To Its Customers, Tries To Get It All Back

Santander Bank Accidentally Sends 176 Million To Its Customers

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  • Santander Bank accidentally sent $176 million to some of its customers on Christmas Day.
  • They are now trying to get all the money back using something called the “bank error recovery process.”
  • Read more news about money here.

Hundreds of customers of British bank Santander were treated to a very unexpected gift on Christmas: extra cash in their accounts.

Around $175 million was accidentally paid out in over 75,000 transactions to around 2,000 corporate and commercial customers, Santander said in a statement.

“We’re sorry that due to a technical issue, some payments from our corporate clients were incorrectly duplicated on the recipients’ accounts,” the statement read.

“None of our clients were at any point left out of pocket as a result and we will be working hard with many banks across the UK to recover the duplicated transactions over the coming days.”

The Guardian reports that the accidental payments were made as a result of a scheduling issue and included wages or money from suppliers.

“The transactions comprised a range of regular and one-off payments. The recipients and purpose of payment will have varied among clients but could have included wages or supplier payments,” the bank said.

The banks can retrieve the cash but some are said to be worried that it may already have been spent and they do not want to risk pushing customers into overdrafts. One bank said it would be reluctant to take the money back if it meant the account holder was tipped into overdraft as a result, according to the Times.

Pay UK, which runs the main payment systems in the UK, is holding talks on how to reverse the payments and some cash has already been recovered.

Under the “bank error recovery” process, Santander is talking with rivals and approaching some customers directly.

“We’re sorry that due to a technical issue some payments from our corporate clients were incorrectly duplicated on the recipients’ accounts,” said a spokesperson.

“None of our clients were at any point left out of pocket as a result and we will be working hard with many banks across the UK to recover the duplicated transactions over the coming days.”

Many of the recipients who received the payments in error are customers of of rival banks, including Barclays, HSBC, NatWest, Co-operative Bank and Virgin Money.

Some banks, however, are reluctant to reverse the accidental deposits because the money may have already have been spent and could push some customers into an overdraft situation.

The massive financial blunder by Santander was, of course, repeatedly lampooned on social media.