The Bank was formed in 1872 as the Loan and Deposit Department of Manchester's Co-operative Wholesale Society, becoming the CWS Bank four years later. However, the bank did not become a registered company until 1971. In 1975, the bank became the first new member of the Committee of London Clearing Banks for 40 years, and thus able to issue its own cheques.
The Co-operative Bank plc is a commercial bank trading as The Co-operative Bank in the United Kingdom and Guernsey, with headquarters in Manchester. It is an ethical bank, and refuses to invest in companies involved in the arms trade, global climate change, genetic engineering, animal testing and use of sweated labour as stated in its ethical policy. The ethical policy was introduced in 1992. In 2002 the Co-operative Group brought the bank and Co-operative Insurance Society under the control of a newly incorporated holding society, Co-operative Financial Services Limited.
A British bank with strong roots in the cooperative movement encounters declining profitability in an increasingly competitive and deregulated financial services industry. It attempts to grow by broadening its customer base and increasing the range of products and services offered. It turns to activity-based costing as part of its reengineering effort to learn more about the process and product costs and customer profitability, and contemplates what actions to take based on this new information.
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