Fees and the Unbanked

How Your State Compares with the Nation


In its recent report, Hidden Risks: The Case for Safe and Transparent Checking Accounts, the Pew Health Group's Safe Checking in the Electronic Age Project investigated checking accounts offered by the ten largest US banks, which held nearly 60 percent of the nation's deposit volume. Pew analyzed more than 250 accounts that these banks advertised online in October 2010. The data below reflect the median disclosed costs of banking services at the two banks in the study that had branches in Alabama and that indicated a presence in the state on their disclosure forms from October. As of June 30, 2010, these banks held 12 percent of all deposits in the state, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC)

According to the FDIC, significant percentages of American households are unbanked or underbanked. The FDIC defines the unbanked as households that lack a checking or savings account and the underbanked as households that "have a checking or savings account, but rely on alternative financial services," such as non-bank money orders or check cashing, payday loans, rent-to-own agreements and pawnshops.

Data from the 2009 FDIC National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households show that 31 percent of U.S. households that dropped a bank account they had previously maintained cited either service charges, minimum balance requirements or overdraft fees as a reason for leaving the banking system.

 Fees and the Unbanked Interactive

National Homeownership Month


37 Researchers Working to Transform Biomedical Science

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Biomedical researchers are on the front lines of scientific innovation. From responding to global pandemics to pioneering lifesaving cancer treatments, these researchers push past scientific boundaries to solve pressing health challenges. For nearly 40 years, The Pew Charitable Trusts has supported more than 1,000 early-career biomedical scientists committed to this discovery.

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Learn the Basics of Broadband from Our Limited Series

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How does broadband internet reach our homes, phones, and tablets? What kind of infrastructure connects us all together? What are the major barriers to broadband access for American communities?

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What Is Antibiotic Resistance—and How Can We Fight It?

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Antibiotic-resistant bacteria, also known as “superbugs,” are a major threat to modern medicine. But how does resistance work, and what can we do to slow the spread? Read personal stories, expert accounts, and more for the answers to those questions in our four-week email series: Slowing Superbugs.