The issue of debit card fees on various accounts have lead some consumers to consider switching banks and, over the past few days we have seen that there are many men and women who believe that turning to either an alternative financial institution outside of their bank or a nonprofit credit union could potentially be more beneficial in terms of costs, lower fees, and even earnings potential on certain types of accounts. Yet, due to the backlash that has been seen as a result of certain financial institutions increasing debit card fees, there are changes that have been reported in terms of decisions made by certain financial institutions as to whether they will continue charging debit card fees in the hopes that more consumers will avoid looking into alternative bank account options and potentially switching to a credit union or competitor.
As an example, J.P. Morgan Chase and Wells Fargo have stated that they are going to discontinue or cancel debit card fee tests that they had in place or were planning on implementing due to the issues that have been seen with problems that have arisen as a result of Bank of America’s debit card fee increase. Obviously, many consumers are aware that proposed debit card fees for Bank of America customers changed recently to a five dollar fee that many customers were unhappy about, as many feel that this is simply a result of certain legislation that reduced the amount that financial institutions could charge merchants.
Simply put, some banking customers were upset with the fact that there were proposed charges being levied against their debit cards and checking accounts simply because banks were no longer able to make as much money on certain fees to these stores, and obviously customers did not want to have to be part of their bank’s efforts to recoup some of these losses from changes in the federal financial reform bill. However, the banks that have decided to either cancel debit card fee plans or eliminate current fees that were being levied against certain customers are a sign that these financial institutions may have gotten the message that their customers are ready and willing to take their business elsewhere if these fee changes are fully enacted.
This is situation has not helped banks in terms of keeping customers specifically due to the fact that many credit unions are offering incentives for new accounts in the hopes of swaying unhappy customers to bring their business elsewhere, but even the bank that has been at the center of this debit card fee drama, Bank of America, is reportedly looking for ways that consumers may be able to avoid their new five dollar debit card fee in the hopes of keeping more customers. Recent reports have indicated that some officials are thinking about helping more consumers fall into the exempt category if certain qualifications are met, as all consumers could meet these requirements originally.
Consumers need to understand that while there may be forthcoming opportunities for these individuals to avoid fees on their checking account, many officials often point out that there are no lack of alternatives when a consumer is unhappy with their bank, and this goes with any aspect of banking and not simply these fees that have made some consumers criticize banks that have been considering certain costs be added to their customer’s accounts. Again, customers will have to look specifically at their financial institution as Bank of America is not been the only financial entity to implement new fees, but as more customers are growing upset over these changes, as well as more alternative financial institutions like credit unions attempting to draw these customers away, changes may come in the near future that could help more individuals avoid these costs and stay with their current bank.