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Fee Increase Attempt Inspires 'Dump Your Bank Day'

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the good-to-switch-once-in-a-while-anyhow dept.

The Almighty Buck 667

suraj.sun writes with this excerpt from CNN Money: "Customers are dumping their banks in droves ahead of the nationwide 'Move Your Money' and 'Bank Transfer Day' movements this Saturday. Given the recent spotlight on attempts — and ultimate failures — by some of the nation's biggest banks to tack on new debit card fees, thousands of disgruntled consumers have already either left or pledged to leave their current bank for a community bank or credit union, which are known for having fewer and/or lower bank account fees. ... At least 650,000 consumers have already joined credit unions since Sept. 29, the day Bank of America announced plans to impose its controversial $5 debit card fee, according to a nationwide survey of credit unions by the Credit Union National Association."

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I did (3, Interesting)

riverat1 (1048260) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953620)

I moved to a credit union 15 years ago and never looked back. Good service and no ridiculous fees.

Re:I did (0)

blair1q (305137) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953652)

And zero national presence. Credit unions are fine if you never have to cash a live check in another state, but if you have, you know you need an account at a bank that has branches everywhere to get your check cashed. Even if the check is a cashier's check from your credit union.

Re:I did (5, Funny)

justin12345 (846440) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953668)

What the hell is a check?

Re:I did (2, Funny)

blair1q (305137) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953750)

It's this piece of paper with money on it that you get for the first couple of weeks after you get a job. You'll see someday.

It's kind of like bitcoin, but without the constant anger over being sniped.

Re:I did (5, Funny)

Arlet (29997) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953794)

So, it's like a direct deposit, but printed out on a piece of paper ? Sounds very cumbersome and archaic.

Re:I did (2)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953958)

Some employers still offer only the "cumbersome and archaic" method, as do friends and family who pay you.

Re:I did (2)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#37954042)

I haven't seen an employer that didn't use direct deposit since the tiny company I left way back in 1999. With the small company I work for now, I've never seen a paycheck; it's always been direct-deposited.

When friends and family pay you, you're probably at home, in which case you go to your local credit union and deposit the check. And how often do you exchange money with your friends and family anyway? If you ever make loans to family members, you can count on never seeing that money again and having a soured relationship forevermore. Never make a loan to a family member; give it away for free if you can afford it, or just don't give it out to begin with.

Finally, there's always Paypal. For personal money transfers, there's no fee IIRC (you have to specially select that when you "send money", and you can't do it too often or else they'll lock you out of that option).

Honestly, this idea that you need an interstate bank so you can cash checks is about the most archaic and ridiculous thing I've ever read on Slashdot. This isn't 1980 any more. About the only time I deal with checks is when I pay the rent (using a cashier's check), and since that's outgoing rather than incoming, it's not really relevant. Why on earth would I ever need to cash a check when I'm traveling out of state?

Re:I did (1)

Lumpio- (986581) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953902)

Actually I've never seen one. The information age has made checks obsolete and extinct in all civilized countries.

Re:I did (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37954004)

I'm sure he has a job but normally his pay comes from people handing him a few extra bucks at a time. I hear the ones who get extra cheese are the real big tippers.

Re:I did (3, Informative)

Drollia (807891) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953674)

Many are part of the same Co-op so you can go in and Cash a Check or get money at no fee

Re:I did (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953676)

Oh, same deal if you want to deposit your check. If you can't find your own bank branch, you're going to be learning their bank-by-mail process.

Fortunately, these days, there are national banks that brag about charging no fees and, while they have zero bricks and mortar, they allow you to deposit a check by sending them a picture of it: Ally Bank [ally.com] is that. It's also formerly GMAC, so it might raise your Too Big To Whatever hackles a bit. They also, by the way, pay more interest than any other bank I can find.

Re:I did (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953700)

Again, what is a "check"?

well (1)

fireylord (1074571) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953730)

it's 'merkin for cheque

Re:I did (5, Informative)

Mean Variance (913229) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953772)

Oh, same deal if you want to deposit your check. If you can't find your own bank branch, you're going to be learning their bank-by-mail process.

You need to do some research. First, how many people have checks to cash while on travel? I would take care of that while home. But even if I did, I can go to any 7-Eleven in the U.S. and most credit unions in the co-op network [co-opfs.org] and deposit a check. Getting access to money is easy.

My local credit union in Fresno has served me well even when I lived in the Bay Area for 12 years. It's amazing what can be accomplished with great customer service, even before ubiquitous online banking.

Re:I did (4, Informative)

whoever57 (658626) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953818)

Oh, same deal if you want to deposit your check. If you can't find your own bank branch, you're going to be learning their bank-by-mail process.

Credit unions have networks of ATMs these days. You can just deposit your checks/cheques in a nearby ATM that is in your credit union's network. I expect that they will have apps that allow you to deposit via your smartphone soon.

Re:I did (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953918)

One of my credit unions allows depositing checks with a smartphone. Two of them allow depositing checks using a scanner. All four of the credit unions I have accounts with are part of the Service Center network, which allows me to access all of my accounts from any Service Center credit union in the nation. I have used this many times while traveling. It allows me to talk to walk into a credit union and talk to a teller like it's my own branch.

little do you know (1)

Moheeheeko (1682914) | more than 2 years ago | (#37954006)

pretty much any credit union that isn't "your" bank can get to your account. I banked in LA for a year when "my bank" was 4-5 hours away. never had one issue.

Re:I did (2)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953694)

Even small credit unions have credit cards and you can get cash at hundreds of thousands of Co-Op networked ATMs.
Most of the time the Credit unions even pay the ATM fees.

Checks you say.... I haven't written one of those in months.

Checks = lame (2)

mugnyte (203225) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953712)

Credit Unions are part of networks. You are misinformed.

Re:I did (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953716)

It's not as if you can't cash that check at a branch of the bank it was written on. OK, you'll pay a fee if you are not a current customer of that bank. You'll have to give them a thumb print, also. Maybe a cheek swab... full-body x-ray, etc.

You make it sound like it's impossible to do, but it's not.

But, be honest. How often have you actually *needed* to do this?

Re:I did (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953784)

Often enough that I've held accounts at every major bank you can name, because there are no truly "national" banks, they're all regional in scope. This even though I've never had my direct-deposit sent to one of them. Actually there's one megabank I've never bothered with: Bank of America.

Re:I did (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953826)

N.B.: I also discovered that many American Express offices have actual banking facilities in them, and provide all these services as well. That cut down on my bank-hopping some, but not a lot, since AmEx offices are not as common as you'd think.

Re:I did (5, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953972)

I don't think that anybody has ever actually "joined" Bank of America, it's just that the probability that you become a customer by acquisition of your prior bank approaches 1 at around a decade or so...

Not true... (5, Informative)

Cephas Aurelius (137477) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953722)

Many credit unions are part of the CU Service Center and share ATMs and even teller services. My CU is in Seattle and I have deposited checks at CUs in Minnesota. Not true for all CUs, but many are part of this system.

Re:I did (3, Informative)

schnikies79 (788746) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953770)

I have a small bank, only two branches, because the closest credit union is 35mi from here. During college and for several years after, I lived hundreds of miles from my bank and it wasn't a problem. If I needed an ATM, I could usually find one in-network (star) and if I needed to deposit a check, I would drop in in the mail and it was available a few days later.

It wasn't that big of a deal.

Re:I did (1)

Hardhead_7 (987030) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953776)

If I were a jet-setter that wrote checks, that might be important to me. But (A) I'm not. My work, like 99% of other people, doesn't include much travel and (B) I can't remember the last time I wrote a check.

Re:I did (2)

Bucky24 (1943328) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953780)

I've been approached by credit unions recently that claim to have more ATMs nationwide than BoA has. I'm guessing that the bank itself doesn't own the ATM but I can get no-fee withdrawal from them.

You're right about the check thing, but not a lot of people use checks anymore.

Re:I did (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953798)

I live in the Portland Metro area. I use a credit union. 2 years ago I was in lexington kentucky for 3 weeks. During that 3 weeks I went out to dinner with several people. One person asked if they could pay me back for dinner with a check. I of course said sure. Next day I took the check into the local co-op network credit union and deposited the check to my account. Nope no national presence at all. About 6 months after that. I went to Santo Domingo Dominican Republic. Out of curiousity I looked into how to access my credit union account while there. Yep, I could diretly access my account if I managed to find some obscure little bank in some part of town I never had been to. Admittedly, language would likely have been a bit of a barrier.

Re:I did (2)

bored_engineer (951004) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953832)

My credit union has cooperative agreements with other credit unions. I'll grant that this doesn't come with the ubiquity of Wells Fargo, but I really don't have any complaints or any problems when I travel.

Re:I did (2)

riverat1 (1048260) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953924)

I have no problem using the ATM's at other credit unions nationally that are part of the network.

Re:I did (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953936)

So, you are saying that credit unions are fine.

Ive been in dire straits, but never where my financial wellbeing mattered on being able to cash a personal check while not being near my banking center.

This is the kind of irrational fear and stupidity that leads to people buying extended warranties on sub $1000 purchases.

Re:I did (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953940)

Credit unions have this amazing thing call shared branching [wikipedia.org] which allows you to process transaction at any of over 4K participating credit unions.

Re:I did (2)

Enry (630) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953952)

My nearest branch for the past 15 years has been 3 hours and one state away. In that entire time, I've had to make only a handful of visits to an actual branch, mostly to pick up a check to give to a car dealer. My mortgage is through a local credit union, but my paycheck is direct deposit, I have checks and debit cards to pay bills, and online and telephone service for when I need to talk to someone.

Re:I did (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953980)

my paycheck is direct deposit

Do you celebrate birthdays or Christmas? If so, how do friends and relatives send you money through the mail?

Re:I did (1)

Enry (630) | more than 2 years ago | (#37954048)

I...mail..checks to the credit union to be deposited? This isn't difficult - there's mailers I can get. Never had a lost deposit. Get extra cash out when getting groceries for day-to-day money.

Also, most of my immediate family has accounts at the same credit union, so sending/receiving money from relatives is quite easy.

Re:I did (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37954000)

Find a Credit Union that is in the "Shared Branching" network, and you can go to any other CU in the network in the US and deposit/withdrawl your money, just as if you were at your own credit union. P.S. I work for a credit union and have set up the SB connections. Follw this link to find the CUs that participate.
http://www.cuswirl.com/

Re:I did (4, Informative)

billius (1188143) | more than 2 years ago | (#37954058)

Many credit unions support shared branching [cuswirl.com] which lets allows you to cash checks, make deposits, etc at other credit union in the same network. I've lived in a city that has no branches of my actual credit union for 5 years now and honestly it doesn't bother me that much (although I will probably get a new account at one of the local credit unions soon).

Didn't B of A drop their fee? (3, Informative)

Kolisar (665024) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953778)

I certainly do not like all the fees that banks have, but didn't B of A drop their plans for the fee? http://www.marketwatch.com/story/bank-of-america-to-drop-debit-card-fee-report-2011-11-01 [marketwatch.com]

For the moment. (5, Informative)

khasim (1285) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953912)

Yep, they've put that $5 on hold for now.
But they'll look for different ways to stick you with additional fees.
They want to keep increasing revenue. And you're the source of that revenue.

On a related note, when you switch banks, make sure you know EVERYTHING about your transactions. Too many stories out there about how someone missed an automatic payment (annual or some other kind) and the bank re-opened their account, charged them and then charged them an overdraft fee. Even when the account was SUPPOSED to be closed.

It's time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953648)

Maybe it's time to take the middlemen out of the system.

If there is hope, it must lie in the proles... I mean, the debt slaves.

We are all victims (0)

ClaraBow (212734) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953660)

We are all victims of the monetary system -- It's time for a revolution!

Re:We are all victims (1)

Arlet (29997) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953692)

Great plan, as long as you don't mind that most people wouldn't survive a full blown revolution. Our society has become too fragile to keep the daily flow of necessities going in the middle of a revolution.

Re:We are all victims (2)

ClaraBow (212734) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953906)

I agree, but sooner or later some major adjustment will have to be made to keep our current system viable. The wealth distribution is getting completely out of balance. If the greedy keep taking more and more, then eventually there will be enough young people under-employed or out of work with nothing to lose. When the hopeless and desperate members of our society reach a critical mass something will give.

Re:We are all victims (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953736)

OK, you start. close your bank accounts and cut up your credit cards

Re:We are all victims (1)

broginator (1955750) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953900)

I'm the 1% and I have no idea what you're talking about #notreally

Bank fees? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953662)

It's incredibly rare to pay bank fees in the UK, so you can imagine my surprise when I find out Americans (and Canadians) pay bank fees at all. As for price hikes like these - what do the banks expect except people leaving in droves. First the banks get a bail out, then they get their bonus' and now they screw their customers just a little bit more with rate hikes. Wow - you guys really need better regulations!

Re:Bank fees? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953704)

Not that rare. When I opened my account I was given the choice of a debit card or a chequebook. I chose the debit card. To pay my mortgage I had to write a cheque so I went to the back to get one and... £10 charge since I had "chosen not to have a chequebook".

Thanks, Nationwide.

That's coz (1)

fireylord (1074571) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953746)

Nationwide sucks in sooooo many ways. They're supposed to be a mutual, but act like the worst kind of shareholder greasing moneygrabbing outfit there is. insane.

welcome the new bank (0)

microbee (682094) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953678)

same as the old bank

Re:welcome the new bank (3, Insightful)

Hardhead_7 (987030) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953740)

Says someone who has clearly never belonged to a credit union.

Re:welcome the new bank (5, Informative)

martyros (588782) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953792)

The difference is that credit unions are explicitly not-for-profit. Their main goal is not to maximize shareholder value, but to maximize member usefulness. That makes a really big difference.

Re:welcome the new bank (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953916)

Mod parent way up - credit unions are basically the consumer's institutions. Banks are the banksters' way to gamble trillions - except they are gambling with tax payers' money (because even if their stupid gamble backfires, the taxpayer bails them out).

Which is why they should be broken up. (1)

khasim (1285) | more than 2 years ago | (#37954024)

Banks are the banksters' way to gamble trillions - except they are gambling with tax payers' money (because even if their stupid gamble backfires, the taxpayer bails them out).

Remember the S&L troubles, too?

The problem is that when those institutions gamble and WIN, the profits are privatized. The profits go to the gamblers. Which encourages others to take the same risks.

But if the gamble fails, then the loses are socialized. They get a bailout from the government or they move the problem assets to another company and let that fail or they get the government to "insure" those assets.

And they're doing the same thing with bad car loans now.

If the bank is too big to fail, then it is too big to exist. Break it up and let the "free market" deal with their gambles.

Also, get the regulations in place. There should be no way to insure crap so that it gets a triple-A rating.

Re:welcome the new bank (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37954030)

The difference is that credit unions are explicitly not-for-profit. Their main goal is not to maximize shareholder value, but to maximize member usefulness. That makes a really big difference.

No profit!?!?!? That's socialism!! Has anybody told the GOP about this growing threat to American civilization? I'm sure the neocons can solve this problem by bombing it.

Re:welcome the new bank (5, Informative)

Bucky24 (1943328) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953820)

credit unions tend to be very different from regular banks. It's owned directly by the people who put money into it. The people who bank there make the decisions on what happens. And they are not for-profit, so they can put all that extra loan income back into savings account interest rates.

Thinking about "switching" (1)

Daetrin (576516) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953686)

I've been thinking about switching my money from my primary checking account over to a credit union, though if i do i may very well keep my BoA account with a minimal amount of money in it and just not use it. It's the same account my parents helped me set up as a teen at what was then our local Seafirst bank. Despite having been bought out by BoA decades ago (or maybe because i felt like it was killed rather than having the chance to become disenamored of it like BoA later) i still feel rather attached to the account. But i'm strangely sentimental like that.

Re:Thinking about "switching" (3, Insightful)

Cephas Aurelius (137477) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953760)

This is an important sentimentality to reflect on. Banks and other businesses count on emotion and habit to keep our business even when their quality suffers. Does the BofA you see today reflect the values of Seafirst? Would your parents still recommend that you do business there? If you are feeling sentimental, frame your debit card after you close the account.

Min-maxing one's credit score (4, Interesting)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953998)

Perhaps it's not sentimentality as much as age of oldest active account, something that gets reported to the three major credit bureaus.

Ah! I was too early (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953706)

How frustrating!
I moved out of BofA a year ago in protest of all their shenanigans during this whole "banking crisis."

So I spent all my protest capital too early, and now I have nothing more to contribute at a time when people are actually noticing.

Honestly (1)

icongorilla (2452494) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953710)

With how you cannot opt out of debit card overdrafting (you know the tech is there, but they don't want you to use it) I've given up on banks. I've considered going to a credit union, but I haven't gotten there yet. Right now I just prefer not using a bank at all.

Re:Honestly (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953754)

Eh? The rest of us already opted out of that shit if we didn't want it. Where the fuck have you been?

Re:Honestly (1)

DanTheManMS (1039636) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953808)

Opting out of that was one of the first things I did to my BoA account, though granted this was a few years ago. They might have made it more difficult to do since then; I wouldn't know.

Re:Honestly (1)

KaLeVR1 (34637) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953874)

Yea, it's safer under your mattress.

Re:Honestly (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953908)

Your mistake was getting a debit card. There are laws limiting how thoroughly you can be screwed with a credit card. There are no laws limiting the overdraft fees you can have shoved into your face.
All the disadvantages of a check with all the disadvantages of a credit card.

Re:Honestly (1)

schnikies79 (788746) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953982)

I can't overdraft with my debit Mastercard. It's opt-in if you want to.

Are the sheep finally waking? (5, Insightful)

KaLeVR1 (34637) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953714)

I last had a B of A account when I was 19. They had the highest credit card rates of any major bank in the country. I shopped around for a day and found a bank with an interest rate 7 points lower than theirs. I moved accounts and a few years later found a credit union with a rate 3 pts lower than the new bank. So I cut my rate from 19.8 to 9.9 just by not being too lazy to shop around. For some reason however, 19 out of 20 people I tell this story to have ump-teen superficial reasons why switching banks would be too much trouble. The truth of it is, they are complacent and lazy.

There shouldn't be even a single person complaining about the bank bailouts or Wall Street who still has an account with these money pimps. If you do business with them, you are an enabler and partially responsible for the bank meltdown of '08.

Re:Are the sheep finally waking? (5, Insightful)

Arlet (29997) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953768)

I pay 0% on my credit cards. The credit card bills are automatically taken out of my checking account at the end of the month.

Re:Are the sheep finally waking? (ATM Convenience) (1)

KaLeVR1 (34637) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953806)

By the way: the excuse that big banks give you conveniently placed ATM machines is bunk. I have an E-Trade account and they reimburse all ATM fees no matter how high. I never have to search for a particular bank and the fee is automatically returned. You can't beat that.

There is NO REASON to do business with a big bank.

Re:Are the sheep finally waking? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953852)

How about saving money first, then spend it. Works just for about anything other than houses.

I really doubt that BoA cares (1)

Pseudonym Authority (1591027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953732)

The big money isn't in consumer saving anyway, but selling them retarded financial instruments like `mortgages'. Sure, they'll lose a few billion dollars that they could have loaned out, but they can always get a loan from the fed or other banks, or even do all sorts of other shenanigans to make the difference up. This is really a victory for them, because they got rid of all those customers who actually care how they are treated, and now know who can be exploited!

Re:I really doubt that BoA cares (1)

KaLeVR1 (34637) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953864)

That cannot be more incorrect. The banks that got clobbered by derivative and other debt trading in the '08 crunch disappeared almost 3 Trillion dollars from wealth management accounts. That's retirement accounts, trusts, and life savings. Someone once said, "A billion here, a billion there and pretty soon you are talking about real money."

Re:I really doubt that BoA cares (1)

Pseudonym Authority (1591027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953896)

I doubt that they cared very much about the people whose money they were managing then either. If they felt anything at all, it was fear that it might hurt the management.

Re:I really doubt that BoA cares (1)

riverat1 (1048260) | more than 2 years ago | (#37954026)

Someone once said, "A billion here, a billion there and pretty soon you are talking about real money."

That would be the late Senator Everett Dirksen (R-IL). Although he apparently never uttered those exact words.

Re:I really doubt that BoA cares (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37954012)

The big money isn't in consumer saving anyway, but selling them retarded financial instruments like `mortgages'.

Without a mortgage, how else is one supposed to buy a place to live?

Really? I did this last year! (2)

oldman57 (705954) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953738)

And now in the process of changing all my credit cards now. New years resolution - no Chase, Citi, BoA, AmExpress ccards by the end of 2012. Well I need the AmEx for Costco, what to do? I just moved my carloan to the credit union. I'll have to do my mortgage next. Let's call it Occupy Credit?

Re:Really? I did this last year! (2)

Algae_94 (2017070) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953804)

And VISA, MasterCard, et al. will continue to collect their money off of your credit card purchases. Sure it doesn't come out of your pocket directly, but it sure acts as pressure to retailers to raise prices. If you really want to do banks in, use cash for everything, but that seems to be downright prehistoric now days.

Cash for absolutely everything? No. (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37954040)

If you really want to do banks in, use cash for everything

As much as possible? Yes. Everything? No. Drop your debit card and your credit card, and you won't be able to pay when shopping online.

Re:Really? I did this last year! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953836)

I understand the banks suck, but why are you dropping your credit cards (American Express)? If you pay off your balance every month, then you don't have any fees. They also give you additional protections over carrying cash, especially when buying things online.

They may have dropped the $5 fee (5, Informative)

milbournosphere (1273186) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953774)

...but they'll get it in different ways. I just received the fees schedule for next year, and it isn't pretty. I started an account at my local credit union, and as soon as my paycheck direct deposit is setup, I'll be closing my account(s) with BofA. I won't give my money to a corporation that is recklessly investing my money when i deposit it, all while nickel-and-dimeing me to death.

I'm probably not the only one (5, Insightful)

denshao2 (1515775) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953790)

I had heard of credit unions before, but I didn't know what they were and I didn't have sufficient interest to find out. I only researched it after this Bank of America incident. Now that I know, it's obvious to me that a credit union is better.

Re:I'm probably not the only one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953926)

Better until you travel overseas and try and use your debit (or credit) card for you Credit Union of choice, many do not have an FX desk, and will use the US Treasury for each of your transactions and the fees will be very high. I got burned on this once and the fees were larger then 20% of the transaction. YMMV, read the small print.

BoA backed out (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953812)

http://message.bankofamerica.com/debitcard/

While you're at it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953830)

While you're busy divesting yourself of the giant banks, please stop leveraging your home equity, taking on unsecured debt, shifting your debt around from one vehicle to another and signing ARMs. Every 'toxic asset' rotting on the GSE books had a bank on one end and a deadbeat on the other, and the malcontents stumbling around NYC and Oakland deliberately ignore the latter.

What do CUs do with your money? (1)

assantisz (881107) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953840)

I am curious (and a bit too lazy right now to look it up) but doesn't the money we deposit with credit unions still end up in the "evil banks"' hands? Isn't all so much interwoven that you will never be able to avoid giving your indirect support to the big players in the financial industry?

Re:What do CUs do with your money? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953956)

Credit Unions lend your money to other members. That's the whole point of the co-op. You lend your extra money to other members for less than bank rates. You earn more money on your savings than you could in a bank, and the members who borrow get a better rate than they could in a bank.

That's the theory. YMMV.

My Credit Union gives me a mortgage rate that is 1/8 of a point less than the bank's rate. About even, I think. But when my national insurance company messed up my coverage statement, I got to chat to a real person at the credit union who save me from paying for the automatic PMI that Bank of America would have slapped on me without my even knowing it. The credit union contact me and helped me resolve the insurance company's goof.

In short, I don't know that I save any more money with my credit union, but I actually like them. They are my partner. Their very existence is to help me succeed. And they are nice about it.

Re:What do CUs do with your money? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37954018)

My local (canadian) credit union uses the money to provide small business and personal loans to credit union customers and also fund social improvement projects in the local area that benefit people regardless if they are members of the credit union or not.

Oh why don't I quote from their website.

Under 'shared success and investing':

"This year we are sharing over $12 million with the community. Shared Success allows us to invest in local organizations that improve the quality of life – social, economic, and environmental – in our communities. A range of grants are available each year for projects that are dedicated to acting on climate change, to facing poverty, and to growing the social economy. "

There's 5 million other amazing things I would say about my credit union but with all my feel-good money and no-hassle free time I'm going to go have wine with friends. Ciao!

(Way to go America on figuring out that People-Planet-Profit is better than Profit-Profit-Profit. We're so proud of you up here ^^ )

Re:What do CUs do with your money? (1)

Anonymous Psychopath (18031) | more than 2 years ago | (#37954022)

I am curious (and a bit too lazy right now to look it up) but doesn't the money we deposit with credit unions still end up in the "evil banks"' hands? Isn't all so much interwoven that you will never be able to avoid giving your indirect support to the big players in the financial industry?

Yes, credit unions are linked into some of the same financial institutions banks use. That's unavoidable. The big difference is that banks are ultimately responsible to their shareholders, which are largely not the same people as their customers. Conversely, credit unions are ultimately accountable to their members, which by definition is the exact same thing as their customers. It makes a big difference in how you're treated.

Awesome! (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953842)

I gotta say, I'm impressed. I just hope they all go after the cell phone companies next.

Re:Awesome! (1)

Anonymous Psychopath (18031) | more than 2 years ago | (#37954038)

I gotta say, I'm impressed. I just hope they all go after the cell phone companies next.

Yeah, let's all switch to coop-owned infrastructure! Oh, wait, there isn't any.

Saturday? (1)

ArcadeNut (85398) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953846)

Don't they know the Banks are closed on Saturday!

Foiled again!

I dumped my bank over a decade ago (1)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953884)

I signed up with a local credit union over a decade ago. In a decade they haven't raised my credit card interest or charged me any fee, ever. That might change if I went around bouncing checks left and right, but I really do get the feeling that they're not out to anally rape me. Not like the national banks I've done business with. To those guys you're just a rosy pink walking asshole that they just can't wait to violate in unspeakable ways, over and over, month after month for as long as you're willing to take it. And they act like you should be happy that they're anally raping you. A couple years after my move, I got a letter stating that I could join a class action against my previous bank, because they'd been ordering checks from highest to lowest and cashing them in that order, to insure that if you don't have sufficient funds you would get hit with multiple fees. Apparently it wasn't kosher.

So yeah, join your local credit union, for much less anal rape in your life. Now if I could find a cell phone company, a television channel delivery company and an internet provider who aren't trying to anally rape me, I'll be a happy camper.

I went with USAA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953928)

Yeah, I got rid of most of my BofA accounts and went with USAA and TD just to have local branch in case I need any services. So far I am liking it.

6.5 vs 3000 ratio at ONE national bank (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953942)

BOA has over 30E6 customers.

ALL credits unions noticed 6E5 customers heading their way.

Don't stop be-leaving if you want to make a difference.

These folks are late to the party (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953944)

I've been a credit union member for over 20 years with my personal accounts, but I also serve as treasurer for a small non-profit that held accounts at Bank of America since the group was founded in the 1970s. After the TARP bailout program, the board of directors voted unanimously in 2009 to move all our funds out of Bank of America and transfer the treasury to any local bank that did NOT accept TARP funds. It was kind of surprising to look through the bailout database at ProPublica to find banks that didn't take TARP money, but I ended up with a list of about a dozen local banks that fit the criteria. Before we made our final decision, however, one of the banks on the list (Fremont Bank) decided in July 2009 to take $14 million in TARP funds just because they thought it might be a handy insurance policy since they had about 40 mortgages in foreclosure, and were concerned the number could rise. Then another bank on the list (Pacific National Bank) failed and was taken over by the FDIC. We made our final decision based on the remaining banks' Texas Ratio, a remarkably reliable calculation of a bank's sovlency that was developed after the Savings and Loan failures of the 1980s. We moved all our money to the Mechanics Bank (based in Contra Costa County), which required no minimum balance and no monthly fees for non-profit institutions. They've been fantastic so far and I would recommend them to anyone who wants a reliable, risk-averse and HONEST bank that won't swindle you or beg for money from the taxpayers. Win!

I joined a Credit Union when I was 12 (3, Interesting)

JoeMerchant (803320) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953948)

I joined a Credit Union when I was 12, and that was a long time ago, indeed. I have never looked at a bank account set of terms and conditions that was not absolutely offensive and repulsive when compared to the Credit Union.

Once, about 20 years ago, when I lived in Miami and the nearest branch of my Credit Union was in Tampa, I opened a local account to be able to deposit my paychecks locally. That lasted about 6 months, during which time they charged fee after fee, and posted a $20 "computer error" in their favor to my account. Computer error, in 1991, from a bank? The computer made a mistake adding a column of numbers? "Sorry sir, we'll fix that." Yeah, you do that, and give me all my cash, NOW.

BoA scraped the fees (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37953966)

Enough people complained that Bank of America decided to scrap the fees.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/bank-of-american-drops-debit-card-fee/2011/11/01/gIQADvugcM_story.html

Tinfoil hat too tight?? (1)

LVSlushdat (854194) | more than 2 years ago | (#37953976)

I hope my tinfoil hat is just too tight, but I have a sneaking hunch that the banking industry is gonna put some major pressure on their congresscritters to cobble up some kind of bill to screw up credit unions. I seem to recall there was an attempt back in the 80s to castrate credit unions, but at THAT time there was not enough
stark terror in the minds of the banking industry to bribe .. err lobby (yeah thats the word) congress to make it happen. With 650K deserters in ONE flippin' month, the banking bozos ought to be shitting their pants. Remember you heard it here FIRST when CONgress "manages" to get bi-partison bill written up/passed and Comrade Oblowme to sign it in record time... I pray to God I'm wrong, but you know how this game works......

What kind of fees do CU's charge retailers? (1)

gyroidben (1223170) | more than 2 years ago | (#37954032)

Does the new law that caps charges to retailers for debit card use apply to credit unions as well? I'm considering switching to a credit union, but don't want to do it if they're charging retailers a lot more than the big banks do. Does anyone know of any banks or credit unions than charge retailers sane fees for transactions?

Saturday? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37954034)

Is the bank even open on Saturday?

I did this a couple years ago (2)

GodfatherofSoul (174979) | more than 2 years ago | (#37954036)

When the moveyourmoney.info campaign was in full swing. Bank of America flat out lied to me about my mortgage, defrauded me on escrow fees, and conned me on a car loan. It was so bad I wrote my congressman and senators as well as the BBB.I went so far as to refinance my house to sever all ties to that organization. For some reason, business culture from this country has gone from "take care of our customers" to "squeeze those suckers for every drop of blood, then if they pack up and leave try to kiss and make up."

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