Friday, September 30, 2011

Bank of America to start charging monthly debit card fee in January

Bank of America confirmed yesterday they will begin charging all debit card users a $5 monthly fee in January as the troubled financial institution looks for ways to replace funds lost through Congressional action.
It is a reaction to new banking rules that take effect tomorrow limiting what banks can charge retailers per card swipe.
Bank of America will charge the fee to anyone using the card in their billing cycle. The fee will be per billing cycle, not per use, meaning the fee applies with the first usage in the billing period and all additional uses are free.
The only exception is for using the debit card as an ATM card. If this is the only usage in the month there will be no charge, according to the Bank of America spokeswomen, Betty Reiss.
The charge would be waived for certain premium accounts, Reiss added in a Thursday statement.
As “big business” continues to be made out as villains by some in Congress the reality is that business pays nothing that it does not first receive from its customers.
Michigan Congressmen John Dingle, Gary Peters, John Conyers, and others have been firm in their stance that bank charges are out of hand. The Democrats in the Michigan Congressional delegation to the House of Representatives and both Senators are united in their support of the bank reform that limits the bank fees on credit card swipes.
Yet the struggling banking industry, including Michigan-based Flagstar and Comerica, faces continual federal regulations that drive up their cost of doing business. They assert that fees must be captured in order to remain solvent.

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