What’s It With Bank Fees – Judge orders $203M Pay Back

Thursday, August 12, 2010, AM | Leave Comment

What’s it with these banks and investment companies? Can’t they make money in fair and square way with no deception attached with their business? Why should there be unfair and deceptive practices by the banks thrown upon innocent consumers? This is America, ain’t it? Are we living in a third world country? Or American businesses are such in red that they won’t hesitate to use methods that are normally associated with crooks, schmucks and scums?

The media reports say that…

A federal judge in California ordered Wells Fargo & Co. to change what he called “unfair and deceptive business practices” that led customers into paying multiple overdraft fees, and to pay $203 million back to customers.

The problem…

Normally, with no deception attached, banks process checks, debit card transactions and bill payments in the order the transactions take place. In other words, the process is performed on first come first served basis. The dollar amount in the transaction is not looked at. What Wells Fargo bank is punished for is that the bank changed its policies and did processing from the highest to the lowest dollar amount. If you think about it, it helped the customers’ account deplete faster than if the bank had followed the normal way of processing. That in turn drove up overdraft fees.

Banks or organized crime…

I lived in New York City for a better part of the 1970s. I used to read about organized crime whose deceptive ways of doing business was the order of the day. That time they didn’t know anything else but their own way of performing their “tasks.”

Late Tuesday on August 10, U.S. District Judge William Alsup accused Wells Fargo of “gouging”, “profiteering” and “deceiving its customers.”

These words used to be reserved only for organized crime along with extortion and “deletion” if you get my drift.

A bigger problem is…

What about other banks? Wells Fargo adopted the policies beginning in 2001, and they became widespread across the banking industry. It is unclear how the ruling would apply to the rest of the banking and other financial institutions.

However, a bigger problem that Wells Fargo is being punished for is that its online banking system would display pending purchases in chronological order. That would lead customers to believe that the processing would take place in that order. But the judge said “Nope! You guys didn’t do that.” In everyday life, that’s deceiving and extorting money from the innocent customers. And so when the judge used the words like profiteering, that’s what I think the judge meant.

In a Nutshell
Who[m] can you trust? Big bank, small bank, anyone? The judge sent Madoff to jail for 150 years. It seems that many copies of Madoff get “downloaded” on a weekly or monthly basis in the U.S. and the rest of the world. The difference is the outer clothes. Under the clothes, they are all the same.

The consumers have been screwed repeatedly by these individuals and institutions. When you begin to think that it’s all over, the next day something else happens that make your head spin. [Remember “Exorcist.”]. I wonder if
Madoff and Wells Fargo said “The devil me do it.” [Remember “Flip Wilson.”]

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