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Banks and credit unions, policy makers and consumer advocates are looking for ways to help households access safe financial products and services that will help them manage their money, pay their bills, develop a credit rating, and build assets. That market opportunity is ripe, and so, too, is the opportunity for abusive practices and missteps that cost lower- and moderate-income working families precious resources.The Pew Safe Banking Opportunities Project, a two-year initiative, develops standards for safe, affordable, fair, and empowering bank accounts, promotes their voluntary adoption by banks and credit unions, and educates the public about the standards.
Oct 18, 2011 - “Hidden or unexpected fees” were cited as the number one reason Greater Los Angeles’ working poor, those who are employed yet remain in relative poverty, closed bank accounts in the past year, surpassing job loss or lack of money, according to a survey of predominately Hispanic, low-income households.
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Jul 20, 2010 - This study compares banked and unbanked families across several categories including financial behavior, economic status and perceptions of the financial service industry.
Jun 18, 2010 - The Pew Health Group’s Safe Banking Opportunities Project responds to the FDIC’s request for comment, published at 75 FR 20357, (April 13, 2010) on potential changes to the survey instrument for the National Unbanked and Underbanked Household Survey.
Dec 12, 2008 - The report found that 12 percent of California households lack a bank account and pay fees to cash checks and pay bills, adding up to $700 annually for the typical unbanked household. The majority of these households appears to be qualified for bank accounts, but is either misinformed about the relative cost of banks or distrustful of them.
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