I Told You So

A little while back I went off on banks, particularly the ATM fees. In that email, I predicted that they would come up with some excuse to start raising fees.

Guess what? HA HAHA HAHHA HHAHHAAHA!!! Whew! Yep, they’re raising the fees. Their logic is two-fold:

1) “White market” machines are stealing their market share.

A white market machine is one of those white cash machines that isn’t affiliated with a bank, often found in convenience stores, or casinos. These machines charge ridiculous fees (sometimes $4 or more), and kick back a portion to the establishment in which they are located. In order to “compete” with these machines, banks are now introducing and/or increasing the fees you pay in these locations.

Think about that for a second: “compete” with other bank machines. This infers that they were making a profit on the machines, which were supposed to be providing a service to the client.

2) Customers are demanding more services from the ATMs, and the cost of providing those services necessitates the higher fees.

I don’t know about you, but I use the ATM to get cash, and occasionally pay my credit card bill. This is, in fact, the picture of the overwhelming majority of ATM users. Undoubtedly it costs money to reprogram the ATMs to provide more services. And I bet the banks would stop charging the fee once they had recouped their costs…

AAAAAAHA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HAAAAAAAA… WHOOOO-HA-HA-hee-hee-hee…. whew! Oh, mercy!

The point here is that the big banks are using this imaginary market pressure to justify increased fees for the rest of our lives. Just like toll highways.

What can you do? First of all, send me an email and tell me how right I was. Secondly, go to your bank and ask to speak to the manager. Ask them for details about how their ATM fees are changing. Tell him that if anything changes in the fees you are paying for access to your money, you are moving your accounts to a Credit Union, where they will bend over backwards for your business, and treat you like a human being. Even if the banks don’t listen, it will make your day more interesting and you’ll have a great story to tell in the lunch room.

Want more information? Check out these links:

CBC Marketplace 1
CBC Marketplace 2

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