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Consumers moving to credit unions to avoid new card fees

Credit unions are working to avoid creating new the fees on customers that banks are employing  to make up for the revenue lost due to recent financial regulations.

"We assume they (Wells Fargo) are responding to their business needs,” Mike Corwin of OSU Federal Credit Union said in response to Wells Fargo’s plan to test a $3 monthly debit card usage fee, according to CreditUnionsOnline.com. “Instead, we prefer to keep the focus on our membership and how we can best provide them unsurpassed service. Our goal is to maintain the free checking/debit accounts our member owners have come to expect as long as we are able to recoup our cost to facilitate such a staple and valued program."

As banks continue to test new fees, credit unions are experiencing an influx of new members.

"Sure, we have new members switch to us all the time because they are tired of high banks fees," Greg Barnes of Nevada Federal Credit Union said, according to CreditUnionsOnline.com. "But this year we've seen more new members switch over to us from banks to refinance their higher-interest auto loans with us at lower rates. We've been aggressive in trying to steal auto business and help save locals sometimes hundreds of dollars each month off their payment – which is very important in this economy."

Credit union executives have said they understand banks’ decisions to create new fees in wake of the Durbin Amendment although they are still searching for other ways to make up for their own lost income.

"However, we are looking at other options to imposing a debit card fee," Dave Willis of Navy Federal Credit Union said, according to CreditUnionsOnline.com. "As a credit union, our goal is to deliver low rates on loans and high rates on deposits in addition to free checking and no fees on debit cards."
 

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