RagingTantrum’s Economic Stimulus Plan (Banks: Give us our F#&king money back!)
Over the last few months, four of our largest banks (Bank of America, JP Morgan, Citigroup, & Wells Fargo) received a total of $90 Billion in bailout funds from taxpayers. According to 2007 research, US banking customers lose more than $17.5 Billion annually in overdraft fees– a huge chunk of it to the aforementioned banks (they won’t disclose exactly how much revenue these fees generate).
That’s right– when you screw up, your bank charges you an exorbitant fee (more on this in a minute). When your bank screws up, the government gives them your money. Think about that. You screw up, the bank gets your money. The bank screws up, the bank gets your money. If we were to post an image depicting this relationship, it would be EXTREMELY pornographic. The government is stealing from the poor– to help the rich steal from the poor. This is not Socialism– it’s much worse than Socialism. It’s straight-up robbery.
This is even more galling when you consider the process major banks use to assess overdraft fees. Assume you have $100 in your bank account. You make several purchases for between $5-$10, and then later the same day forget that your balance is low and make a $95 purchase, putting your balance in the negative. It would stand to reason that you’d get charged a standard fee ($35 at Bank of America). But that’s not how it works. Every night at midnight, your transactions are REORDERED from largest to smallest. These means that instead of getting charged one $35 fee, you’ll get charged for each purchase. It’s easy to rack up $140 in overdraft fees in a day if you forget to deposit a check. It’s a dirty, nasty way to make money from people who are often broke.
So we at RagingTantrum have a proposal. Banks, GIVE US OUR FUCKING MONEY BACK. Refund the overdraft fees you charged last year. We bailed your sorry mismanaging asses out. Give us a break.
Beyond being the right thing to do, an overdraft refund would actually stimulate the economy. $17 Billion unexpectedly injected into consumer wallets would stimulate spending and create jobs. Obviously the economy needs more help than our humble little plan can provide– but we think this would be a step in the right direction. Call your bank and tell them to do the right thing!