Financial regulators recently ordered Wells Fargo to pay $185 million to resolve allegations that the bank’s sales quotas and incentives pushed employees to open millions of unauthorized accounts, but that my not be the end of Wells’ troubles, with the U.S. Department of Justice now looking into the matter. [More]
There’s nothing like being ordered to pay $185 million in refunds and penalties to get a big bank to change some of its business practices. After its employees allegedly created millions of bogus accounts in an effort to meet sales quotas and earn bonuses, Wells Fargo is putting an end to these controversial goals. [More]
If you live in a certain kind of urban area, you see it all the time: those new mixed-use buildings go up, and on the ground floor of practically every single one there’s a bank branch or two. And if you thought to yourself, “Why are there so freaking many bank branches opening in an era when all the young folk living in those buildings bank by phone?” you’re not alone. But it turns out there’s an easy reason that bank branches keep proliferating: customers are using ’em.
After nearly 150 years of whiz-bang multibillion-dollar Wall Street investment banking, Goldman Sachs is, for the first time, wading into the humdrum world of savings and checking accounts, by (sort of) putting its name on a consumer banking platform. [More]
While we’re used to the idea of people keeping money in places other than bank accounts — preloaded debit cards, sock drawers, comic book collections — there’s one way consumers are storing their cash that’s more popular than several financial institutions: Starbucks cards. [More]
Instead of imposing new fees on their existing customers, banks have an exciting new idea: attract new customers and charge them fees. Specifically, banks are looking to low-income and lower-middle-income people who might normally use check-cashing stores or check-cashing services in retail stores to gain immediate access to their money. These customers may not make large deposits, but what customers who want access to their cash right away do generate are lots of fees. [More]
Banks with more than $1 billion in assets now need to report on how much revenue they bring in from overdraft fees and other charges. The first report on those numbers shows that banks made $11.6 billion last year from customers who overdrew their accounts.
Back in 1998, comedian Al Franken published a satirical novel where the fictional Al Franken ran a single-issue presidential campaign against ATM fees in 2000. A technical malfunction erased ATM deposits, making his single issue a crucial one, and Franken ended up in the White House. Today, he is a sitting U.S. senator, yet not involved in the 2016 presidential race where excessively high ATM fees are an actual issue being discussed. [More]
Six months after the Los Angeles City Attorney filed a lawsuit accusing Wells Fargo of a slew of unfair practices — like encouraging employees to open unauthorized consumer accounts and then charging those accounts phony fees to meet sales expectations — two other regulatory agencies have opened investigations into the bank’s behavior. [More]
When you log into your bank account online, you might see an image of a birdhouse, or a teapot, or some other object you selected when you signed up. Those pictures are supposed to help keep a customer’s account safe, by assuring them that the web page they’re viewing is, in fact, the bank’s website and not a scammy fake. But as cybercriminals are catching on, banks are choosing to ditch the images in favor of other security measures.
Consumers’ Changing Banking Habits Led To 1,400 Bank Of America Branches Shuttering, More Cuts To Come
Over the past several years, Bank of America has revamped the way it provides banking services in an effort to cut costs and respond to consumers’ changing banking habits. Those operation modifications have not only included shutting down some drive-thru windows, but the closure of nearly a fifth of the company’s branches. [More]
Lawmakers Introduce Legislation That Would Give Legal Marijuana Businesses Access To Banking Services
One of the biggest challenges facing the new legal marijuana industry comes down to money: now that businesses in certain states have gotten the go ahead to sell weed, many of them are stuck in a tough spot when it comes to actually dealing payments for their products, since the drug is still illegal under federal law. A group of senators is seeking to change that, introducing a bill that would take the heat off legal marijuana operations and give them access to banking services.
To the naked eye, general purpose reloadable prepaid cards function much like long-established credit and debit cards and have quickly gained traction with consumers, especially those who have been shut out from traditional banking options. In fact, about 23 million consumers use prepaid cards regularly. [More]
Customers of Fifth Third Bank will have fewer options when it comes to doing business at a physical location as the company plans to close or consolidate 100 branches and scrap plans to open 30 new locations. [More]
Thanks to automated payments and online banking, many of us rarely (if ever) write checks, but millions of Americans still pull out their checkbooks every day to pay their bills. Because they might not always have enough money in their accounts on the day they write those checks, some folks will postdate their checks so that they aren’t deposited or cashed until after that date. Unfortunately, the fact is that there’s generally no actual obligation to honor the date on a check. [More]