NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Bank of America (BAC)plan to charge customers $5 for using their debit cards -- now aborted -- nonetheless looks to have driven many disgruntled customers into the arms of credit unions.
Since Bank of America announced its planned fee on Sept. 29, 650,000 consumers joined a credit union, according to estimates from Credit Union National Association (CUNA). That compares to 600,000 new credit union customers in all of 2010.
"These results indicate that consumers are clearly making a smarter choice by moving to credit unions where, on average, they will save about $70 a year in fewer or no fees, lower rates on loans and higher return on savings." said Bill Cheney, president and CEO of CUNA, in a press release.
Other banks, including Wells Fargo (WFC), Regions Financial (RF), SunTrust (STI) and J.P. Morgan Chase (JPM) had also been experimenting with charging fees for debit card use, though they have since called off those plans, as has Bank of America.Big bank critics and consumer groups, as well as Occupy Wall Street, have been promoting a "national bank transfer day," this Saturday, Nov. 5, where consumers are expected pull money out of big banks as a gesture of protest. -- Written by Dan Freed in New York.
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
- Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV