By Sharlene Goff, Financial Times Retail Banking Correspondent 

The three biggest challengers in the current account market are on track to open at least 2m accounts this year as they step up their assault on the top four high-street banks.

Current accounts have become a key battleground for banks that are trying to take a bigger share of the overall retail financial products market. They believe it is easier to sell mortgages, savings accounts and credit cards to customers if they already have a current account relationship with the customer.

The big four banks – HSBC, Royal Bank of Scotland, Barclays and Lloyds – provide about three quarters of the UK’s near 50m accounts, according to the Office of Fair Trading. But other lenders – including Santander UK and Nationwide, and more recently TSB, which has been spun out of Lloyds – have been aggressively chasing customers.

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