overdraft fees

3 Easy Ways to Avoid Overdraft Fees

Overdraft fees and other insufficient funds charges are taking a big bite out of our wallets. Here are three easy strategies to help you avoid handing that cash to your bank.

Sandy Gives Big Banks Some Humanity

The worst recession in decades wasn't enough to make big banks relent in their pursuit of income, but Hurricane Sandy apparently gave them pause: Several banks have stepped up to make things easier for their customers during their current time of need.

The Most Costly Mistake You Can Make With Your Bank Account

There's nothing more expensive than spending money you don't have. That, of course, is a lesson you might learn the hard way if you carry a balance on a high-interest credit card. But spending beyond your means can be a pricey proposition even with a debit card.

Bank Fees Further Erode Free Checking Accounts

Truly free checking accounts are becoming rarer as banks add more fees to boost their profits. Among other fees, the average monthly service fee on checking accounts is a record $5.48, up 25 percent from the Bankrate survey a year ago.

Banks Made Less on Overdraft Fees Last Year

The average fee for overdrafting your bank account rose again last year, but evidently, more Americans are doing a better of job managing their checking accounts, because the amount paid in overdraft fees dropped by $2.5 billion in 2011, after a $3 billion drop in 2010.

BofA Settles Overdraft Fee Suit for $410 Million

More than 13 million Bank of America debit-card customers could see some repayment for excessive overdraft fees the bank charged them over the course of a decade. A federal judge has approved a $410 million settlement to compensate customers who were charged fees as a result of the bank posting transactions from highest to lowest dollar amount, rather than in the order they occurred.

Cash-Strapped Americans Can't Break Overdraft Habit

Overdraft fees are like a movie monster that just won't die. No amount of public outrage or regulation can slay the beast. But the banks aren't the only ones casting overdrafts in financial sequels: Truth is, consumers keep breathing life into the overdraft dragon.

Overdraft Fees Remain High Despite Fed Rules

A year after the Federal Reserve enacted new rules to rein in abusive bank overdraft practices, fees remain high and some institutions actually have slapped on additional penalties, according to a new survey by the Consumer Federation of America.

Free Checking Lives, With Sneaky Fees

You might assume that free checking is one of those banking benefits on the way out, but that's not the case: More than a third of checking accounts charge no monthly service fee. But that doesn't mean that banks don't expect to profit from your checking business. Here are the fees that make "free" a highly inappropriate designation -- and how you can avoid them.

How to Keep Banks From Ripping You Off

Banks lost billions in the financial crisis, and now face profit-squeezing regulations. And make no mistake: They're looking at your balance to fix their bottom lines. Here are four ways your bank takes your money, and what you can do to hold on to more of your hard-earned cash.

Top Tips on Choosing the Right Bank for You

Picking a bank is a lot like selecting a new paint color for your kitchen. You're going to see a lot of it, and while you can always change your mind if you don't like the one you've chosen, it's a hassle. We asked the experts for advice on how to choose the one best suited to your needs.

Buyers Beware: Business Credit Cards Are a Bad Deal

When the Credit CARD Act of 2009 was enacted, the goal was to make credit cards safer for people, but banks have found a loophole. Those consumer protections weren't extended to cards designated for business or commercial use, and as a result, millions of American households are at risk from the same unfair bank practices as before.