These 3 Big Banks Collected $6 Billion in ATM and Overdraft Fees

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For consumers, ATM and overdraft fees are a scourge, but for bankers they are crazy profitable. Find out the worst offenders for 2015.

Americans don’t like forking over their hard-earned cash for bank fees. So this news is likely to make some consumers pretty angry: America’s three biggest banks pocketed more than $6 billion in ATM and overdraft fees in 2015 alone.

You read that right. JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo and Bank of America made more than $6 billion last year on two of consumers’ most despised fees, CNN Money reports.

“That equates to $25 for every adult in the United States,” notes CNN Money.

We told you a few months back that Americans are paying a record high amount for ATM fees. On average, consumers are forced to pony up about $4.52 if they use an out-of-network ATM to access their own money. Ouch.

But where banks really rake it in is on overdraft fees. Last year, America’s three biggest banks reaped more than $5.1 billion from overdraft fees alone.

Despite a 2010 Federal Reserve rule against banks automatically enrolling customers in overdraft programs, many Americans are still taking big hits from overdraft fees.

“Consumers who opt in to overdraft coverage put themselves at serious risk when they use their debit card,” said Richard Cordray, director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

It’s even more maddening when you consider the bulk of debit card overdrafts are roughly $34 and typically occur on transactions of $24 or less, which a CFPB study says is the equivalent of paying 17,000 percent in interest on a loan.

“Consumers really need to look at the fine print,” Christopher Vanderpool, an analyst at research firm SNL Financial, told CNN Money.

Check out “5 Sly Ways Banks Push Your Account Into the Red.”

What do you think of the amount of money banks are collecting in ATM and overdraft fees? Share your comments below or on our Facebook page.

Stacy Johnson

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