Skip to main content

This story all started for me back in 1984 when I had just returned to my job at Boeing after a 16 month layoff. I bounced a check. In response my large commercial bank I'd been with for years decided I should be treated as a 2nd class customer, and it revoked my ability to use any ATM's. The next day I went in and closed my account and opened one at Boeing Employees Credit Union. I've been there ever since. A rule change allowed BECU to offer membership to all residents of Washington State. Now BECU is the 4th largest credit union in the U.S.

Price fixing seems to an accepted feature in large commercial banking. Remember when all the big banks imposed ATM fees over a short period through price fixing. In recent years Big Banks have gotten used to getting a 20% return on their money, and now that Dodd Frank has slashed their exorbitant merchant fees we're seeing a new round of increased customer fees as the big banks desperately seek to maintain their 20% returns at the expense their customers. Before the 1999 repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act big banks routinely made closer to 10 to 12 percent return on their money.  

If enough of the big banks' customers vote with their feet this new wave of bank price fixing could backfire, and they might have to go back to accepting a less greedy rate of return on their money.

Customers ditch bank fees, flock to credit unions

Now it's known as BECU, and those initials are experiencing a major boom. Just since September 30, more than 7,000 new members have joined, and more than 700 joined on Wednesday alone.

With new federal regulations on banks, many of the bigger names including Bank of America are raising fees. Bank of America recently announced that it wil start charging $5 a month to use a debit card.

One Bank of America user said despite being a long-time and loyal customer, he's looking to switch to BECU over a range of fees.

Overall, the Northwest Credit Union Association says their member institutions report business is up 20 to 25 percent over last year.

But it's not just credit unions seeing growth. The Washington State Bankers Association reports deposits are also up at community and regional commercial banks.

While this is a local story, I suspect this must be a nationwide phenomenon. If this stream of departing customers turns into a flood the big banks will have no choice but to scale back their excessive greed. With 50 Million customers Bank of America can probably afford to lose 2 or 3 million of them if they can more than make it up by squeezing higher fees out of their remaining customers. But if B of A is looking at losing 12 or 13 million customers, than that's a whole new ball game.

If you still do your banking with a larger commercial bank I justr have on question.
 Why?

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

paradox, Ed in Montana, Mimikatz, vicki, pundit, northsylvania, Bill in Portland Maine, ssmt, fcvaguy, Mogolori, Chi, filkertom, Odysseus, slinkerwink, Bear, glitterscale, PeterHug, lazbumm, Emerson, sara seattle, Shockwave, wu ming, billlaurelMD, rhubarb, Troutfishing, eeff, Mnemosyne, niemann, Creosote, Doctor Who, dweb8231, cinnamon68, Gustogirl, opinionated, concernedamerican, emmanuel, Zinman, susans, whenwego, PBnJ, gayntom, muledriver, mkfarkus, chimpy, greenomanic, vmckimmey, jennifree2bme, bwren, jalbert, splashy, Cedwyn, hopeful, dksbook, Quege, jdmorg, psnyder, Nag, liz dexic, TexDem, businessdem, pat bunny, virginislandsguy, gmb, bula, roseeriter, hoolia, john from vermont, DSC on the Plateau, Steven Payne, defluxion10, Calidrissp, liberte, RebeccaG, lcrp, riverlover, alizard, Pohjola, One bite at a time, bwintx, blonde moment, zerelda, WisVoter, Wife of Bath, jcrit, poemworld, lyvwyr101, eztempo, Sybil Liberty, bibble, Skennet Boch, la motocycliste, G2geek, humphrey, bloomer 101, historys mysteries, Bluesee, Ckntfld, UncleCharlie, jarneys dad, unclejohn, SherwoodB, Independent Musings, Chinton, OpherGopher, PBen, Militarytracy, Flint, ZappoDave, KatGirl, drewfromct, YucatanMan, Lepanto, reflectionsv37, ratzo, Annalize5, majcmb1, Pam from Calif, Sun Tzu, jimreyn, Kayakbiker, most peculiar mama, markdd, RichterScale, Carnivorous Plantling, Isara, Ozzie, Savvy813, WisePiper, Blu Gal in DE, Ginny in CO, dazed in pa, Erevann, Alan Arizona, debedb, reddbierd, Mother Mags, martini, BachFan, emperor nobody, tarheelblue, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, Pinko Elephant, vigilant meerkat, cybersaur, Clytemnestra, MeMeMeMeMe, BlueInARedState, Russgirl, Dvalkure, victoria2dc, Hear Our Voices, Shakludanto, Wary, arlene, praenomen, jguzman17, global citizen, erratic, 4Freedom, nonnie9999, gatorcog, SadieSue, real world chick, Terminus, JVolvo, Unitary Moonbat, middleagedhousewife, Pilgrim X, Wisper, ilyana, CA Nana, doingbusinessas, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, BB10, fiddlingnero, Stripe, Dreaming of Better Days, blueoregon, kurt, 1864 House, SD Goat, shaharazade, Statusquomustgo, bstotts, Friend of the court, cpresley, Thinking Fella, One Pissed Off Liberal, FlamingoGrrl, bluicebank, ChadmanFL, Ken in MN, Cronesense, tgypsy, jhecht, camlbacker, Debs2, Castine, psychodrew, FishOutofWater, wildweasels, gustynpip, terabytes, DWG, joedemocrat, bnasley, HCKAD, jayden, jnhobbs, millwood, Sarea, GeorgeXVIII, journeyman, janatallow, cloudbustingkid, spearfish, zorp, Empower Ink, rmonroe, MKinTN, KLS, JeffW, TX Freethinker, TheFatLadySings, HappyinNM, wayoutinthestix, califdem, ScottyUrb, zerone, OleHippieChick, Youffraita, Senor Unoball, elwior, Laughing Vergil, Akonitum, KJG52, jamess, tofumagoo, hwmnbn, MrJayTee, dewley notid, icebergslim, pickandshovel, Missys Brother, alnep, brasilaaron, Seamus D, petulans, luckylizard, swtexas, Blueslide, allie123, Nica24, tristan57, GrannyOPhilly, lissablack, RWN, legendmn, LaFeminista, satanicpanic, 207wickedgood, maggiejean, prettygirlxoxoxo, Bule Betawi, pileta, artmartin, J M F, rcnewton, greengemini, The Dead Man, juca, Dopeman, banjolele, Mislead, Nebraskablue, dark daze, Norm in Chicago, Methinks They Lie, Canadian Green Card Alien, BlueInRedCincy, DefendOurConstitution, virginwoolf, petral, worldly1, MKSinSA, COwoman, kevinpdx, Shelley99, XNeeOhCon, stevenwag, Flyswatterbanjo, haremoor, nancat357, mahakali overdrive, astral66, angel d, Railfan, commonmass, parse this, brentbent, Parsifal, Broke And Unemployed, trustno1, Vacationland, Johnnythebandit, David Harris Gershon, jethrock, eb23, angelajean, dagnome, LouP, gulfgal98, tb mare, DiegoUK, shel3364, Toon, Otteray Scribe, science nerd, progdog, rasfrome, Its a New Day, Actbriniel, dot farmer, Onomastic, kerflooey, Quite Contrary, coquiero, bgblcklab1, La Gitane, FarWestGirl, Situational Lefty, kevin k, barflyer, CoExistNow, ca union goon, miscanthus, trumpeter, mrsgoo, Haf2Read, marleycat, zukesgirl64, Wolf10, DruidQueen, dle2GA, slooterdam, evilgalblues, tardis10, CherryTheTart, worldlotus, Tyto Alba, sound of progress, Caddis Fly, Archie2227, ratcityreprobate, SteelerGrrl, Book of Hearts, Metalman68, jham710, Jerry056, PrometheusUnbound, ArtemisBSG, Frank In WA, DawnN, IowaBiologist, Sister Inspired Revolver of Freedom, brown and blue all over, yawnimawke, HamptonRoadsProgressive, KiB, RhodaA, anodnhajo, Flying Goat, PennsylvaniaProgressive, greenbastard, Siri, We Won, molecularlevel, IndieGuy, docrocktex, AnnieR, a2nite, This old man, citizendane, Tyler R, AspenFern, supercereal, TBug, radical simplicity, My Name Isnt Earl, Arahahex, pittie70, ricklewsive, lunachickie, New Minas, Fed up Fed, james321, Kinak, marty marty, GAladybug, George3, James Wells, Canis Aureus, Captain Chaos, natfroiland, Steve Canella, LibbyLuLu, DamselleFly, BeeDeeS, 6ZONite, flyinghogfish, hashby

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site