retail news in context, analysis with attitude

Bloomberg Business Week reports that Wells Fargo plans to begin a five-state test of a $3 monthly fee for its debit cards, “in addition to monthly service fees ranging from $5 to $30 that Wells Fargo already charges.”

According to the story, “Although it's unusual, Wells Fargo isn't the first major bank to test whether customers will be willing to pay to use their debit cards. Chase last year also began testing a $3 monthly debit card fee in northern Wisconsin.

“Other major banks have also revamped their lineup of checking accounts in the past year or so, in many cases by hiking monthly fees or adding conditions customers must meet to qualify for fee waivers.”

The banks are looking to compensate for the loss of revenue that they are anticipating will occur because of new federal regulations putting limits on transaction or “swipe” fees, which in the past have reaped more than $19 billion or more for the industry.

Business Week says that “Wells Fargo has said it plans to recover about half the revenue it loses from the new regulation, either through product changes or volume growth. Earlier this year Wells Fargo announced that it was ending its debit rewards program. Chase has also ended its debit rewards program and PNC Bank will no longer give customers with free checking accounts rewards for debit card purchases.”
KC's View:
Three bucks a month isn’t so bad.

My bank says that beginning in January, it’ll be charging a pound of flesh each year, payable in monthly installments of 1.3 ounces apiece.

This struck me as a problem until I thought about it. I’ve been trying to figure out a way to get rid of my love handles, so if I can just carve off that flesh from that specific area of my body, it’ll be a win-win...