$2 fee for Non Debit Card Use

When I moved to Michigan, I opted to keep for the most part, my Nevada credit union accounts. One local credit union allows me free debit card transactions from my Nevada accounts and I set up my payroll and retirement accounts to pay into Nevada. I use cash for nearly all purchases (food, groceries, gas, dining out, etc) so a local account was not critical. However, I occasionally get checks for consulting services so I needed a convenient way to cash them without mailing them back to Nevada and waiting for them to be deposited. So, I opened an account at a local credit union.

Well, one day I had lunch with my niece who had previously had an account at that same credit union, but she had closed it years before. During our conversation, she commented that they had closed her account when it ran out of money because they were charging some fee (she could not recall what the fee was) and after the account zero’ed, they just closed it. No phone calls, no emails, no letters, no nothing. {{That should really be the subject of another post regarding this CU.}}

This prompted me to check my accounts the next day. Since I seldom used them – I seldom logged into them to look at the balances. Upon logging in, I discovered that I was being charged a $2 fee for Non Debit Card Use. Yes a $2 er month fee for the privilege of NOT taking my money out of their bank. I do joke about banks charging a free for using ATM since in bank logic they still have to hire tellers to provide customer service and if you are not going to use the tellers, you should pay the bank for having them anyway. However, to actually see the fee show up – that was a shocker. But then again, it really is not when you start paying careful attention to how banks work anyway.

Later that day, I visited the branch and approached the branch manager with my “problem”. That problem being a “$2 fee for Non Debit Card Use”. He calmly, and unaffectedly explained that the credit union is charged for the card being active even if it is not being used and so if I am not going to use it – to at least check my balance or any other purpose – the bank was going to charge me for it.

I asked about my options regarding the fee and he informed me that I could (a) cancel the debit card or (b) use the card at least one a month. I informed of a a third option: Close By Accounts. I let him stew on that for several seconds before I finally informed him that I would cancel the debit card and then when I wanted anything I would consume the time of one of his customer service tellers.

On my way out of the branch, I also with drew a large portion of the money in the accounts. Over the next month, I will draw the accounts down to nearly zero.

The credit union in question: Educational Community Credit Union.


Capital One can show up at your homes, workplaces

Capital One says it can show up at cardholders’ homes, workplaces

Read the entire story of abusive practices at the LA Times link.

Will JPMorgan’s record settlement set incentive for better bank behavior?

Will JPMorgan’s record settlement set incentive for better bank behavior? (via PBS News Hour)

GWEN IFILL: J.P. Morgan’s $13 billion settlement brings months of delicate, high-stakes negotiations to an end. Under the terms of the deal, $4 billion will go to struggling homeowners in the form of reduced mortgage payments, lower loan rates and other…

Continue reading ‘Will JPMorgan’s record settlement set incentive for better bank behavior?’

Scandal-hit Barclays bank is cutting 12,000 jobs despite giving itself $3.9 billion in bonuses

Scandal-hit Barclays bank is cutting 12,000 jobs despite giving itself $3.9 billion in bonuses (via GlobalPost)

Barclays will axe thousands of jobs and raise bonuses for its investment bankers this year, the under-fire British lender announced on Tuesday after posting a return to annual profits. Chief executive Antony Jenkins, who has himself declined a huge…

Continue reading ‘Scandal-hit Barclays bank is cutting 12,000 jobs despite giving itself $3.9 billion in bonuses’

Big Banks Continue to Dominate Mortgage Lending

Big Banks Continue to Dominate Mortgage Lending (via PR Newswire)

NAPERVILLE, Ill., Feb. 13, 2014 /PRNewswire-iReach/ — Consumers searching for the best mortgage rates on the Internet are often getting poor information and dubious search results.  The largest banks in the U.S. continue to be the dominate mortgage…

Continue reading ‘Big Banks Continue to Dominate Mortgage Lending’

Barclays announcing cuts along with increased bonuses.

In typical big business and big bank operating procedures, Barclays Bank announced that 12,000 people world wide will be placed on the unemployment rolls. However, in order to continue their commitment to improving the economy, they have announced large bonuses for a select few departments.

In order to improve the bottom line profits at the bank, the elimination of the about 7% of their workforce will make the bank much more lean and profitable. And profitable is what the stockholders want – except that Barclays has already been accused of paying more in executive bonuses then in the amounts returned to the stakeholders.

Couple the high executive bonus structure with an Investment Banker bonus pool of 1.6 million British Pounds, the question is not for whom does the bells toll, but for whom does the bank care about the most? It would appear, that while the new CEO was brought into bring about a new culture, it is hard to forgo business as usual.

This is not unlike the new GM CEO complaining she is making less the she deserves because she is a woman, when her total cash, bonuses, stock and other perks, total approximately $14.4 million at the same time she is wanting the UAW members to take pay freezes and smaller retirement.

Note: The opinions stressed in this post are just that, you are free to add your opinions to the discussion. All comments are moderated.

Banks in Great Britian relutant to give you back your own money

It was recently revealed that one or more major banks in Great Britain had started an unannounced policy of refusing to allow people to with draw large sums of cash from their accounts. The banks used a variety of excuses and reasonings behind the policy.

One excuse that a bank representative used was that the bank wants to make sure you paying cash was the right way to make the payment. I guess that it is their logic that even if you have the money in the bank to pay, it does more for their profit margins if you borrow the money and pay higher interest fees.

While there have been rumors that USA banks are doing similar things, the theory behind some events (like cash withdrawals from ATMs in department stores suffering from customer data breaches) is protection of the consumer’s accounts. This makes sense. However, when a customer walks into a branch and presents all the required valid IDs and authorizations to receive access to their own money – the banks should not stand in the way.

There are already numerous laws and reporting requirements, where when you deposit large sums of money into a bank/credit union, they will tell the Federal government so that Big Brother now knows you are dealing with cash – even for legit activities such as selling an unwanted 2nd car. But to all allow the banks to refuse to give you back your money without any explanation – which is what happened in Great Brittan is transferring too much power and control over personal lives to large corporations.

The main bank in the Great Brittan situation initially claimed that policies were targeted at preventing financial crime, however, they admitted that they needed to update staff that the recommendations that customers accessing their accounts must provide written documents was not a reason for refusing the account.

One customer interviewed in a story on Yahoo News, wanted the money to pay off a loan (a loan that was costing interest money) and was given the impression that the bank wanted the cash to remain deposited in the bank and thus the individual would have to continue to pay interest on a loan they were capable of paying off.

Refusal to change addresses

In November 2011, I opened a series of accounts and a Credit Union in Las Vegas. Nevada. Now for personal privacy and protection of my mail, I receive NO mail at my home address. All packages are send to a Private Mailbox Service and all routine mail is sent to a USPS Post Office Box.

During the account opening I stressed that the physical address was provided as per Federal banking laws only and that Zero, Zilch, Nada mail was to be sent to the residence address. I was assured this was the case by the representative.

A couple of months later, while review my information on line, I noted that the credit union was only showing the physical address and not the mailing address on my statements. Since I was set up for online accounts only, I would not have noticed that I was not getting statements for my accounts since I was not expecting any anyway. I called and talked to the appropriate persons and was assured that they had NOW fixed it. Good. One problem in life now solved – I can forget about it. WRONG.

In December, 2013, while on an extended trip to the Midwest, I realized by Debit Card (I have no credit cards only Visa Debit), was expired. It expired in November (2013). I had checked my PO Box mail on November 30 before departing on the trip. No new card had been received.

I called the branch to discuss the matter was promptly informed that the replacement card had been mailed to XXX Street Address. I blew a fuse and aggressively (but politely) informed the so called service representative that NO mail was to go to that physical address and that I had already been thru this matter several times. After about a 10 minutes conversation, I was assured (1) the address issue had been resolved and (2) a new card would be mailed to my PO Box.

After I fumed about 10 minutes over the issue, I called the customer service center (at the main office). As soon as the phone was answered – I immediately demanded a supervisor. The supervisor comes on the line and I then calmly explained my complaints against the Las Vegas branch.

He then looks up my account and reviews the situation. He then informs me that the address has NOT been changed and although he can confirm a new card has been issued – it will in fact go to the physical address where it will be returned because I have an agreement with my postal carrier to refuse all mail to the address.

I then (less politely and less calmly) inform the customer service supervisor that I want to close ALL accounts with the credit union. To his credit, I will acknowledge that he did correct the address and he also arranged for a replacement card to be FedEx overnighted to me.

While the problem is hopefully solved – it is an example of the lack of concern and professionalism that is common in banks. Unnecessary inconvenience of the customer and expenditure of excessive effort by both the customer and the bank’s staff to solve a non problem before it became a problem.

Critics say Michigan foreclosure bills seek to ‘get people out of their homes quicker’

Critics say Michigan foreclosure bills seek to ‘get people out of their homes quicker’ (via Mlive.com)

LANSING, MI — Michigan homeowners could have more time to avoid foreclosure but less time to reverse it under legislation moving quickly through the state legislature. The Senate Banking and Financial Institutions Committee on Thursday approved a four…

Continue reading ‘Critics say Michigan foreclosure bills seek to ‘get people out of their homes quicker’’

Nevada State Fee Bank

More and more Nevada State Bank is fee happy. I am certain that the new management recently worked for Bank of America.

Over the past the several months I have been moving my business accounts from Nevada State to a credit union because of all the fees that NSB now charges. Notary is no longer free. If you dump change in their coin machine you pay nearly 10% ‘convenience’ fee. Business accounts have slowly increased in fees over the past several years. I have no credit lines, but I am willing to be that those are also going up in nickel and dime fees all to pay for executive pay packages.

The fee for a simple business account recently climbed form $15 to $18. Seems little enough until you figure they have 100,000 small business accounts and this little $3 fee adds upwards of $300,000 a month to their bottom line. And I am low guessing their small business account numbers.

In the process of closing my LAST account I will ever have with Nevada State Bank, I was charged $18 to close the account. Yes, $18 service fee to close the account!!!!!

Ok with me, you got a free $18.00 from me and I will make it a point to trash you with everyone I talk to. Everyone. That may seem like a unimportant point until you consider that I manage a postal/mailbox center with 100s of box customers and I set up new Nevada based corporations and LLCs for out of state clients. Yes, lots of new business clients ask me about banks. I send them exclusively to any of the Las Vegas based credit unions. The CUs are not perfect, but their fees are a lot lower and if you use online statements, you can get most accounts for free. Even business accounts.

And here is a funny point: I saw a sign where they were voted a Best In Las Vegas in the LVRJ readers poll. I really assume that the only votes they got was their employees because the management ORDERED the employees to vote for the bank. I can not really think anyone would willing vote for this joke of a “neighborhood” bank.

This post will be cross posted on other blogs I control. Just more trashing them.

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