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Bank of America chief admits $5 fee mistake

Brian MoynihanBrian Moynihan, Bank of America’s chief executive, recently admitted that the bank’s proposed $5 fee for debit card users wasn’t a great idea.

“We didn’t do our best work there,” Moynihan said, BusinessInsider.com reports. “We did a lot of testing, but the customer spoke and we pulled it back.”

After Bank of America announced its plans to implement the fee, customers responded with overwhelming opposition by sending letters and emails and making phone calls with complaints

An online campaign calling on the bank to drop the fee on Change.org received more than 300,000 electronic signatures, BostonGlobe.com reports.

“We struck a chord with customers that no one anticipated,” Moynihan said, according to BusinessInsider.com. “We learned our lesson and stopped it.”

Democratic politicians led the chorus of consumer outrage.

"It's overt, unfair and I hope their customers have the final say," Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said after he learned about the bank’s proposal, FoxNews.com reports.

Financial experts say that it was the Democratic policies that caused Bank of America, as well as other large banks, such as Wells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase, to consider the fees in the first place.

New rules, including the Durbin Amendment, have caused banks to lose a significant portion of the annual revenue. The new fees, according to bank representatives, are attempts to recoup this loss.

Bank of America announced the $5 fee in September. The plan was to charge $5 per month to debit cardholders who make transactions with their cards. The bank reversed its plans in October.
 

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