Things haven’t been going too well for Bank of America since the financial giant announced it would be instituting a $5 debit card fee to its customers.
Apparently, the banking giant (along with several others) claims they will lose billions of dollars due to new government regulation aimed at protecting consumers and merchants who were forced to pay “swipe fees” whenever a consumer used their debit or credit cards. The government limited the amount banks could charge merchants for swipe fees (from $0.41 to $0.21), and banks are passing the fee onto consumers instead.
Bank of America’s new $5 monthly debit card fee would be assessed to customers who use their debit cards beginning next year. The fee would be charged whether customers use their card onces a month, or every day of the week (and for both debit and credit purchases).
Since annoucning the fee, Bank of America’s website crashed (it’s still not working properly), its stock plummeted to below $6 per share, and many of its customers are considering switching to banks without a fee.
Although the new fee has angered many, industry insiders think most customers won’t jump ship. Many banks, including Citibank and Chase, are also working to institute such fees, and most consumers are so tied to their banks, they may consider switching a hassle.