Friday, March 27, 2009

$38 for a Cup of Coffee?

"Would you pay $38 for a cup of coffee? Clifford Phillips of Wash., did. He used his debit card to pay for a latte, not knowing there wasn’t enough money in his checking account to cover it. The bank could have declined the transaction for insufficient funds. Instead it approved the electronic payment and hit his account with a $34 overdraft fee.

At most banks and some credit unions, most checking accounts are now automatically enrolled – as a customer service – in an overdraft protection program. The financial institution lets you spend more than you have, loans you the difference (up to a certain amount) and hits you with a hefty fee."

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