The problem with money comparison websites

They claim to save you money and are relied upon by hundreds of thousands of people when opening bank accounts, shopping for insurance or switching utility suppliers. Money comparison websites have grown from virtually zero 15 years ago to become giants of the financial web. The sites, which allow you to quickly compare fees, charges, interest rates and a host of other financial data, are quick, convenient and undoubtedly save the average consumer hours of searching and comparing individual products by collating a large number of them into a single list. But while the time saved by using one of these sites is not in doubt, few people realise that all of the major comparison websites work on a commission basis. And the total amount of commission that they rake in each year is estimated to be close to £800 million. The hidden costs of comparison websites In 2012, the polling organisation, YouGov, surveyed a large number of online shoppers and asked them how much they thought they were


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