: ‘Everyone is talking about inflation, this is a way to combat it’: Lawmakers urge banks to play a part helping cash-strapped consumers

by | Jul 16, 2022 | Stock Market

With inflation now running at a 41-year high, Democratic lawmakers say cracking down on bank overdraft fees is one way to help struggling consumers. “Everyone is talking about inflation, this is a way to combat it, this is a way to combat it, to keep dollars in the pockets of consumers,” U.S. Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney said on Tuesday, promoting a bill she introduced a year ago that’s meant to keep banks from engaging in “deceptive acts” related to overdraft fees, according to a summary of the bill.

Sen. Cory Booker, a Democrat from New Jersey and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a Democrat from Massachusetts, joined Maloney along with consumer advocates at a press event about the bill. The bill, dubbed the “Overdraft Protection Act,” would restrict banks from charging customers overdraft fees. It includes requiring banks to limit charges to no more than once per month and six times per year for each customer. The bill would also require banks to allow customers to opt in to overdraft programs in the first place instead of enrolling them automatically.  Currently, banks must give customers the choice to opt in for ATM and debit-card transactions, but automatic enrollment still exists for checks and electronic payments. Read more on overdraft program rules here. For ATM and debit-card transactions, the American Bankers Association says: “Before opting- …

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