The new $5 monthly fee Bank of America is charging debit card holders wasn’t just picked because the spreadsheet guys really like Subway $5 footlongs. There’s actually a calculation behind it. Here’s the math.
ConsumerAffairs.com explains how under the old rules, debit card fees usually amounted to an average of 44 cents per transaction. The new rules cap the fees at 24 cents per transaction. That’s 20 cents per swipe the banks aren’t not making.
Now, the average consumer has 25 debit card transactions per month. Multiply the 20 cents 25 times and you get $5 as the amount, on average, Bank of America stands to miss out on per debit card holder, per month.
So there you have the business reason for the $5. But just because there’s a business reason it doesn’t mean that customers aren’t going to get angry. I wonder if the defection rate will match Bank of America’s projections.