LOS ANGELES - Washington Mutual Inc. has ended the surcharge fees on all of its automated teller machines in California.

The company said Monday that, effective immediately, noncustomers can use any of it's 1,000 ATMs in the state for free. Over half of those machines are located on bank premises.

The new policy reflects recent attempts by Californians to ban ATM surcharges Wamu said. Though legislation that would have prohibited surcharging was recently overturned in court, the company said it was responding to an evident consumer demand.

Mike Amato, manager of Washington Mutual's consumer financial center network, said the gesture underscores the company's "customer-friendly approach." Wamu expects to attract new banking customers because of the policy, he said.

Wamu also announced that it will donate $1.50 to California charities for every noncustomer ATM transaction conducted in the state during the last week of October.

The Seattle company has $185 billion of assets.

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