BARCLAYS PLC (NYSE:BCS) Q1 2020 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript
Apr 29, 2020 • 04:30 am ET
Welcome to the Barclays First Quarter 2020 Analyst and Investor Conference Call.
I will now hand you over to Jes Staley, Group Chief Executive; and Tushar Morzaria, Group Finance Director.
Good morning, everyone, and thank you for joining us today. First of all, let me say that I hope you and your loved ones have been keeping safe and well. It feels like the last time we did one of these calls was a long time ago and in a very different world. Obviously, an event like the COVID-19 pandemic changes priorities and inevitably makes individuals and companies like ours focus on what's really important right now. For us, that means running the bank safely and profitably, helping our customers and clients through the difficulties they face, supporting the U.K. economy in the communities where we live and work and taking care of our colleagues around the world. We've been able to do that because of the underlying strength of our business and the resilience of our diversified model.
And I've been especially proud of the way my colleagues across Barclays have risen to the challenges of this extraordinary time. So I want to start today by taking a few minutes to set out how we have been responding to the crisis. Our business touches half the households in the United Kingdom. We know that some of our customers are facing very real and very daunting financial challenges. And this is a worrying time for the vast majority, regardless of their circumstances. We've moved quickly to give them the reassurance and support they need. I'll give you just a couple of examples. So far, we've granted repayment holidays on 94,000 mortgages and on over 57,000 personal loans. We're providing an interest-free buffer on overdrafts for 5.4 million customers.
And beyond that, we've reduced and capped charges until at least July. We've waived late payment fees and cash advance fees for eight million Barclaycard customers and granted some 87,000 payment holidays. 655 branches remain open across the United Kingdom, providing vital banking services while our teams are feeling are fielding around 260,000 calls a week. That's 44% higher than the typical volume. And I'm really pleased that we've been able to proactively identify NHS and key workers among our customer base and move into the front of call queues as their time is especially precious at this moment. Getting businesses through this period intact is crucial to give the best chance of the rapid and sustainable economic recovery and is also in our shareholders' interest. The U.K. government has put huge resources into supporting that ambition and is a central topic of every conversation I have with ministers. It is an unprecedented effort by them and by the Bank of England. And we're committed to playing our full part to help get that support to the businesses that need it. We have now approved some 3,760 CBILS loans with a total value of GBP737 million.
And we expect those numbers to increase