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Citizens Bank moves to increase fees, eliminate basic checking

Customers of Citizens Bank will see increased checking account fees next month, as the institution plans to boost its monthly fees and other charges beginning in April in response to Dodd-Frank regulations.

As banks seek to maximize and recoup revenue lost through increased regulations, Citizens Bank spokeswoman Lauren DiGeronimo said that the changes are a direct result of the bank’s review that began about a year-and-a-half ago, The Boston Globe reports.

“These changes are designed to make our offerings more uniform and easier to understand, and also to make them more economically sustainable in light of recent regulatory and legislative changes affecting our industry,” DiGeronimo said, according to The Boston Globe.

Based in Providence, R.I., Citizens Bank has plans to increase the monthly fee on the Green Checking account from $4.99 to $9.99. By maintaining a minimum account balance of $1,500 or completing five transactions with a debit card, however, customers can circumvent the extra fees.

Citizens Bank also intends to increase the monthly fee on personal checking with interest accounts from $2 to $11.99. Customers can also avoid this fee by maintaining a daily average balance of $2,500 or by making five qualifying transactions.

The bank plans to make other changes, including the elimination of its basic checking account as well as several other business checking accounts. Fee discounts on check orders for Circle Checking accounts will also be eliminated, but the fees may vary, The Boston Globe reports.

DiGeronimo said that the institution has included information on statements that inform customers about the fees and how to avoid them.

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