For those in the country who aren’t astoundingly naive enough to think that Hurricane Irene was all “media hype”—like those currently without power who don’t know when they’ll get it back, or worse—some of those supplies purchased in the lead-up are beginning to run low. If you’re a large financial institution lacking the good will of Americans lately, this is a great opportunity to lend a hand to affected communities around the country by donating supplies and organizing relief efforts! Or even better…
…a moment to exploit by sending out an army of your excruciatingly costly ATMs to service the public! Via Dealbook, that’s exactly what Bank of America is doing:
In a statement to DealBook, Bank of America said it was actively working with customers “to help them with their specific needs.” The company expects “minimal” disruptions to its operations and plans to deploy mobile A.T.M. units to affected areas as necessary.
Reminder: Bank of America’s “MyAccess” checking accounts will fine you an $8.95 monthly fee if you fall below a $1,500 deposit balance if you don’t have direct deposit. This was part of the policies instituted after backlash from their enormously cruel overdraft fees were putting their most “asset-light” customers in the hole. Funny how they stack up:
J.P. Morgan Chase—home of the $3 ATM fee for non-customers—is waiving all fees through September 4th for customers in hurricane-hit locales. Local branches have also been urged by the mothership to “use their ‘good judgment’ in helping consumers secure loans at flexible terms.” Wells Fargo is suspending some of the fees—those they hit with customers using non-WF ATMs, like Bank Of America’s, but not on non-WF customers using their own ATMS—as well as early withdrawals on CDs.
Bank of America recently scored a $5B cash infusion they supposedly didn’t need thanks to Warren Buffett and His Bathtub Of Magical Thinking. Shrewd investor that he is, it would appear he put his money with the right guys: those willing to roll out anything—including, literally, their violently costly cash-vomiting machines in weather-affected regions—in order to make the cash move.
In Irene’s Wake, Banks Make Adjustments [Dealbook]
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