BANKING

Sovereign hits customers with new fees on accounts

BLOOMBERG FILE PHOTO/MIKE MERGEN
THE LATEST IN A STRING of customer fee increases from local and national banks, Sovereign Bank has doubled the monthly cost of its basic checking account, raised its minimum balance requirement and added a $2 surcharge for checking a balance at another bank's ATM.
Posted 1/22/13

BOSTON – Sovereign Bank N.A., a unit of Banco Santander S.A., has increased its existing fees on checking account customers and added entirely new fees, the latest in a handful of local and national banks to do so, reported the Boston Globe.

Sovereign has joined the ranks of Bank of America Corp., Citizens Bank, TD Bank and community bank Salem Five in the recent trend of increasing fees on customers.

Sovereign’s new fees include doubling the monthly cost for its basic “Classic Checking” account to $10, raising its minimum balance from $500 to $750 and adding a $2 surcharge for checking a balance at another bank’s ATM, according to the news source

“It’s horrible, just horrible. They take wherever they can,” Joseph Zito, a puppeteer from Nantucket and a Sovereign customer since 2004, told The Globe.

According to the news source, the bank will also increase its overdraft fees to a flat $35, from $5 a day up to $45. Young adults will also take a hit from Sovereign’s new service charges as the bank is lowering the maximum age to qualify for free student checking from 25 to 22, said The Globe.

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