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CITY VIEWS: WOULD YOU EXPECT CO-OP BANK TO PROSPER IN THE DOWNTURN?

<strong>CHRIS CLARKE </strong> BRITISH LAND FINDERS<br />&ldquo;It would be interesting to see where the people opening the new accounts are coming from. Are they people who cannot get accounts elsewhere, or is there a north/south divide? I think the man on the street probably sees that the Co-op is doing well and has not had any bad news, and feels it is safer.&rdquo;<br /><br /><strong>DAVID RENECLE </strong> CGI INSURANCE SERVICES<br />&ldquo;In a way, yes, I can see that people may be fed up with the bigger banks such as RBS and Lloyds, making the Co-op look attractive. But I am not sure how many people really appreciate the workings of a co-operative bank, or know how to differentiate between them and the larger banks.&rdquo;<br /><br /><strong>PETER BIDDLE </strong>EXCLUSIVE ANALYSIS<br />&ldquo;I can understand that brand may be a factor, as there has been a lot of negative media about the conduct of banks. I don&rsquo;t think most people understand the distinction between banks. But those who do, and are more ethically minded, may want to feel they have more control over the future of their money.&rdquo;