Survey Finds Potential Opportunity In Checking

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ATLANTA – In a newly released poll, three in 10 checking account holders expressed interest in paying a monthly fee for a checking account that would have no other fees.

The consumer survey, “New Era for Checking Accounts,” was released by SYNERGISTICS Research and probed checking account users for how they would rate their level of interest in a checking account that would have a higher overall maintenance fee in return for no other fees. One-tenth were "very" interested in such an account, a response that was wider among 18- to 34-year-olds. In terms of specific fee levels, six in 10 of these interested respondents indicate they would be willing to pay at least $10 per month for such an account, SYNERGISTICS reported.

“This is perhaps one of the most interesting, and critical, points in time for the checking account products,” said COO Genie M. Driskill. “New rules regarding debit card and ATM overdrafts may have an impact on the overall fee income of financial institutions – a revenue stream that contributed to subsidizing free checking accounts. So, after many years of pursuing share-gaining strategies by offering free checking, many providers may have to take away from customers the pricing deals that initially attracted them. The current situation, although painful, represents an opportunity for providers to re-price and reposition their checking products in a way that fairly delivers value to their customers while enhancing profitability.”

 

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