The Jamaican banking scene is booming. Jamaican banks are seeing tremendous growth in local customers and transactions as well as international customers and transactions. If you are a local Jamaican or from the Diaspora and looking to open a bank account in Jamaica, well, read this article is for you. This article will share with you the Best Jamaican Banks. The criteria to determine the best bank in Jamaica are popularity, customer service, security, and revenue.
Jamaican Banks Overview
The Bank of Jamaica is the premier bank in Jamaica. The Bank of Jamaica was created in 1960 and began operation in 1961, one year before Jamaica gained independence. The BOJ operates as the central bank of Jamaica, whose objectives are as follows:
- To distribute and redeem notes and coins.
- To foster the development of money and capital markets in Jamaica
- To act as the Jamaican Government banker.
- To influence the volume and conditions of supply of credit to promote the fullest expansion in production, trade, and employment, consistent with the maintenance of monetary stability in Jamaica and the external value of the currency.
Defining the Criteria for Best Banks
Popularity: The speaks to how popular the bank is among Jamaicans. How many customers does the bank currently serve?
Customer Service: For anyone opening a bank account, this might be one of the most important criteria. Good customer service is vital to banking, after all, it’s your hard earn cash that’s being entrusted to the banks to safeguard.
Security: The safety of your money is a top priority of any bank customer. Especially now, in the digital age, with online banking and ABMs, the security of your hard-earned cash is a must when considering a bank.
Revenue: The amount of revenue generated by a bank is a good indication of the market’s confidence or lack thereof in a particular bank.
Now that our main criteria list is set, let’s get to listing the Best Jamaican Banks in 2021.
Best Jamaican Banks in 2021
JNCB – Jamaica National Commercial Bank (NCB)
The Jamaican National Commercial Bank is the leading bank in Jamaica. It has received many international and regional awards and praise. The most recent Fitch rating gave NCB an IDRs at ‘B+’ this outlook accounts for the coronavirus impact on NCB revenue. The bank offers a range of services such as online banking, deposit accounts, life insurance, loans secured and unsecured, stock market trading, etc.
Popularity: NCB is the most Pupolar Bank in Jamaica when it comes to customers.
Customer Service: NCB customer service is top-notch. There is always a customer service agent available 24/7, seven days a week.
Security: NCB is considered the safest bank in Jamaica. It was awarded the best and safest bank for Jamaica by Global Finance. The bank is also known to take the initiative to call banks if they noticed any suspicious activities on their customer’s bank accounts or debit/credit cards.
Revenue: In its last full financial report in 2019, it shows that the bank generated J$30.7 billion in profit and has under management assets valuing J$1.6 trillion. The 2020 final numbers are not in yet. However, despite the coronavirus, the company is still projected to have a profitable year, although somewhat off target.
Scotia Bank Jamaica
Scotia Jamaica is right behind NCB when it comes to popularity. At one point in time, it was the leading commercial bank in Jamaica that received multiple awards for Bank of the year and the best bank in Jamaica by numerous international financial publications. The bank offers a range of services, including income and asset protection, business transition and financial planning, estate and trust, banking and borrowing, and investment management.
Popularity: Like NCB, Scotia Bank enjoys being one of the most popular banks. Its popularity is second only to NCB currently.
Customer Service: Scotia’s customer service is available 24/7 seven days a week. They offer toll-free calls as well. There might be some delays/wait time when trying to reach a customer service representative. However, they always successfully handle all queries.
Security: Scotia Jamaica offers good security services for all their services and products. Their online banking services requires two factors authentication before logging. This adds an extra layer of protection to your account in case the first layer is compromised.
Revenue: Scotia Group Jamaica has reported net profits of $9.1 billion for the year ended October 31, 2020, down from $13.2 billion in the comparative period of 2019 due to coronavirus. Scotia’s asset base increased year over year by $7.3 billion to $556.3 billion as of October 31, 2020.
Sagicor Jamaica Bank
Sagicor Jamaica is one of the leading financial institutions in Jamaica. Although not as popular as NCB and Scotia when it comes to personal direct deposit banking, it outshines them both in investment and insurance banking. Sagicors services include banking, investments, life & health insurance, pensions, and real estate services.
Popularity: Sagicor is very popular among working-class/corporate Jamaicans. Jamaicans looking for life insurance, health insurance, and investment opportunities, this bank is their number one choice.
Customer Service: Sagicors customer service is top-notch. They offer customer services via telephone, email as well as a live chatbox on their website.
Security: As one of the leading financial institutions in Jamaica you can rest assured that their security protocols are top-notch.
Revenue: In 2019 Sagicor made a net profit of j$15.65 billion with total revenue of j$92.67 billion. There final 2020 numbers are not yet to be tallied. The company is expected to post a profit this year. However, the numbers will not be as high as 2019 due to covid 19.
Jamaica Natianal Bank
Jamaica National is also one of the top banks in Jamaica. It recently became the first Caribbean owned bank to open a branch in the United Kingdom (UK). This is quite an accomplishment many Caribean banks are vying to enter the British markets due to the high Caribbean diaspora living and working in the country. Its operations in the UK will also strengthen its JN Money Transfer business.
Popularity: JN is most popular amongst older Jamaicans. The age range looks something like 40 to 80 years old. This is not surprising considering that JN is mutually-owned. This means that its customers and policymakers are its owners. JN customers are usually the older Jamaicans who own small businesses.
Customer Service: Jamaica National have customer service numbers for Jamaica, the US and Canada, and the UK. They also offer a live chatbox on their website as well as a contact page for email messaging.
Security: Jamaica National Security is up there with the other leading banks of Jamaica. With its expanding into the UK, you can be sure that its security is reliable.
Revenue: JN Bank Limited’s total assets under management as of March 2020, according to their financial report is j$186.3 billion, with a net profit of J$568,609,000.
There are Many other Banks in Jamaica that one can consider doing business alongside. However, the banks listed here are the leaders when it comes to Jamaican customers.
Source(Corporate Financial Institute, JN, NCB, Sagicor, Scotia Jamaica)