Rating the Banks on Checking Account Safety, Transparency and Overdrafts

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Rating the Banks on Checking Account Safety, Transparency and Overdrafts

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Consumers who use checking accounts are exposed to unnecessary financial risk and high fees, according to a new report from Pew. http://www.pewstates.org/projects/safe-checking-in-the-electronic-age-328780.

The report reviews the largest U.S banks on their policies regarding checking account disclosure terms and fees, overdrafts, and dispute resolution practices. The report found that while no bank achieved all recommended best practices, the five top performers were Charles Schwab, Allied Bank, Citibank, First Republic and Bank of America.

Pew's Susan Weinstock, an expert in safe checking, offers recommendations on how all banks can improve their policies, making checking accounts safer and more transparent for consumers.

Some of her recommendations include uniform checking account disclosure terms that are easy to understand, reasonably priced overdraft fees and clear terms, and more meaningful choices for consumers when it comes to disputing a checking account charge without a mandatory arbitration clause. 

Checking accounts are a fundamental product for consumers. Learn more about safe checking: http://www.pewstates.org/projects/safe-checking-in-the-electronic-age-328780.