Checking Account Fees Meet Regulator Reality

by Mercator Advisory Group 0

Now that the industry is beginning to get down to the business of reshaping their retail DDA franchises, debit issuers who will not be exempt from interchange fee regulations will be first out of the gate with new fees and rolled back benefits. Managing through the impact of the Durbin Amendment in this early phase will prove to be an uncomfortable journey as consumers begin to see the impact of this legislation hit their bottom line as well.

“Bank of America is testing a new lineup of accounts that come with fees ranging from $6 to $25, depending on the level of service selected. Citi already revamped the terms on its checking accounts last year to include higher fees in many cases. Chase, PNC Bank and Wells Fargo ended or scaled back their debit rewards programs.

And more unwelcome changes are likely in store. Among the possibilities: Fees for debit cards and even a $50 or $100 cap on transactions.”

For an industry that will need efficiencies more than ever before, one has to wonder how a transaction amount cap will impact consumer use of debit cards. Until there is something better to take their place, we vote for some long, deep breaths.

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