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Old 05-06-2011, 10:01 PM  
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And the rift between CEO pay and the workers continues to soar.
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Old 05-07-2011, 09:35 AM  
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Originally Posted by bisjoe View Post
It's not the Republicans that are the problem, it's the lawyers. And yes, there are Democrat lawyers too.
More truth there than not. I fail to see anything that particularly requires a law degree to be a Congressperson. Yet DC is butt deep in lawyers like a cloud of locusts that never moved on after finding the mother lode of PORK.
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Old 05-07-2011, 11:08 AM  
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Originally Posted by bisjoe View Post
It's not the Republicans that are the problem, it's the lawyers. And yes, there are Democrat lawyers too.
that's not the base issue, there is absolutely no legal reason that contracts and terms can't be more reasonable, the problem is banks (and other businesses) want them to be as confusing as possible so they can sneak into the contract very shady items and terms.

for example reordering transactions to make sure you overdraw your account, In what world does that seem reasonable to be able to purposely do that?
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Originally Posted by blucher View Post
The fox is in the hen house demanding we buy him a chicken suit and pretend he's a chicken.


On PBS they said in 1980 CEO pay averaged 42 times that of the average worker. Today it's 320 times the average worker's pay. They said "on Wall Street it's like the Recession never happened."
And so far the only sector of retail that has about fully recovered are high end luxury stores......

trickle down economics at work, considering the middle class has been SHRINKING since reagonomics and the trickle down economics became popular, I have to wonder how many more decades before it trickles down to the average person and the middle class grows? when can we declare trickle down to be a failure?
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Old 05-07-2011, 11:28 AM  
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Originally Posted by RedJeepXJ View Post
that's not the base issue, there is absolutely no legal reason that contracts and terms can't be more reasonable, the problem is banks (and other businesses) want them to be as confusing as possible so they can sneak into the contract very shady items and terms.

for example reordering transactions to make sure you overdraw your account, In what world does that seem reasonable to be able to purposely do that?

And so far the only sector of retail that has about fully recovered are high end luxury stores......

trickle down economics at work, considering the middle class has been SHRINKING since reagonomics and the trickle down economics became popular, I have to wonder how many more decades before it trickles down to the average person and the middle class grows? when can we declare trickle down to be a failure?
When the riots begin after the people on the bottom, finally emerge from the smoke of Madison ave and begin to unite!
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Old 05-07-2011, 10:57 PM  
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Ah, one of my favorite topics. :-)

Overdraft fees used to be charged on checks drawn against the account. A customer would write a check to a vendor, that vendor would deposit it at his bank, his bank would demand payment from your bank. If you didn't have the funds available, your bank sent it back to his bank, his bank charged him a fee, and he'd have to come back to you. So he wouldn't accept checks at all. Overdraft protection and fees ended the problem on your end instead of with the vendor. The advent of an electronically authorized debit card transaction should have ended overdraft fees by pre-approving each transaction. Debit cards were first issued on the promise of (in part) no overdraft fees. That claim disappeared quickly - banks missed those fees, so stopped denying transactions at $0 account balance, and started denying them based at -$500 instead.

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Originally Posted by YelloJeep View Post
I could be mistaken but if you don't spend more than you have, then the things you have listed are a non-issue. Am I missing something?
As far as different names for "overdraft" who cares? They all sound like the same thing to me....
What you are missing is exploitation. If you've ever taken out a loan for any reason, you're not abiding by your own suggestion. You can argue that your loan is a separate contract all you want.

If I write a check to a merchant, they can call up my bank and ensure that funds are available. If I don't have funds available, my bank is contractually obligated to report that fact, and the merchant can decline the transaction.

Now, use a debit card. The Point of Sale terminal contacts my bank for permission, and then reports to the merchant whether my bank approves or declines that transaction. Until last year, my bank was under no obligation to decline transactions in excess of the available balance, nor could I compel them to do so. (I never found a bank that would offer such a service after 1999, even though debit cards were frequently advertised as being free of overdraft fees just a few years prior)

So, just don't let your account get that low? Good advice. About as good as the advice "Don't get raped" given to a woman forced to walk after working overtime on the night shift and missing the last bus home.


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Originally Posted by YelloJeep View Post
Did I read all contracts? probably not. Do I think it is right for them to say something about them being able to change the contract? Not really, but if there is a change I usually get a letter.
And again, I have never had a problem myself with any of these "fees".
Why is that? Oh, I don't know. Maybe I am just lucky

Oh yeah, if I am uncomfortable with a contract because it doesn't make sense or there is too much "junk" in it, then I go somewhere else or do without. (Not just with banking)
More good advice. Now you're telling that woman that since you don't work nights, she doesn't need to work nights either. But if she's going to work nights and doesn't like to get raped, she should walk home via a different route. Nice.

Every bank I've found has used several questionable accounting practices to stick it to their customers. Since you don't have a problem with these fees, you are unaware of the common banking practice of reordering transactions so that withdrawals (largest to smallest) are applied before deposits. You're unaware of the fact that banks report that your deposits have been applied to your account same day or 3 days later, but if you actually spend that money within the 7-day time frame they have between accepting the deposit and applying it, they can rewrite their books so it looks like you overdrafted.

Because you don't have a problem with this sort of fee, you're unaware that they only reorder transactions if they can charge an overdraft fee - if they can't, they show up in the order they were actually conducted.


You probably don't patronize payday lenders or pay for check cashing services either. You probably recognize that these sorts of businesses offer incredibly overpriced services, and you likely avoid them like the plague. What you probably haven't considered is that these businesses are highly regulated, due to their unfair business practices. They are limited on the interest rates they can charge. Banks were not limited this way - they could extend a line of credit by approving a withdrawal in excess of account balances, and charge interest rates (in the form of "overdraft fees") far in excess of usury limits, and in violation of a number of lending laws.



If you've never had an OD fee, you've never had a vendor punch in $700 on his POS terminal instead of $70, then charge the correct $70 and give you the correct receipt without telling you about the mistake, then reverse the mistake after you've left. Then a week later, you didn't get a notice for overdraft fees on the original $700 withdrawal, the $70 withdrawal, and every other transaction you conducted that day. You didn't have to point out the mistake to 15 different employees of the bank, only to be told repeatedly that it was your problem, and the best they could do was remove half the overdraft fees and blame the vendor for making the mistake, and you for not catching it sooner. You didn't have to argue with vendor about covering the fees incurred by his mistake, pointing the blame at my bank and me - after all, he corrected his error as soon as he discovered it.

Your method of solving the problem would have been for me to have kept at least $1200 in my checking account, minimum, to account for someone's $700 error and the $500 overdraft before banks generally stop approving transactions and I'd know there was a problem. If I'd had $1200 in my account, none of my withdrawals would have overdrafted. It's my fault that although I spent less than $500 total, I should have had at least $1200 to cover such a mistake by a vendor.

Of course, if I had been spending $120 instead of $70, I would have had the same damn problem.


Fortunately, a few of these problems were nixed a couple years ago. That they ever existed (and that banks couldn't be competitive unless they charged them) demonstrates one failure best solved by additional regulation. The industry as a whole refused to do right by its customers, so its customers got together, called themselves "government", and forced them to fix the problem. But there are a lot of other problems the industry doesn't want to fix.
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Old 05-08-2011, 10:23 AM  
mohel
 
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when can we declare trickle down to be a failure?
For me it took hearing what an ignored working class looks like. In Argentina the Middle Class funds the upper class & the poor. A surgeon friend was working 3 part time jobs to cover apartment rent and groceries.

I've done that as a kid but this surgeon is on 24/7 call at her main hospital and may find herself cutting for 12 hours straight without sleep the night before.

If trickledown worked the wealthy wouldn't be sitting on their wealth waiting for less risky investments. Their only concern recently was finding tax shelters to hide it in.
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Old 05-08-2011, 11:33 AM  
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Originally Posted by blucher View Post
For me it took hearing what an ignored working class looks like. In Argentina the Middle Class funds the upper class & the poor. A surgeon friend was working 3 part time jobs to cover apartment rent and groceries.

I've done that as a kid but this surgeon is on 24/7 call at her main hospital and may find herself cutting for 12 hours straight without sleep the night before.

If trickledown worked the wealthy wouldn't be sitting on their wealth waiting for less risky investments. Their only concern recently was finding tax shelters to hide it in.
They've always been looking for that, and they just got some more of it!
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Old 05-16-2011, 08:58 PM  
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Kent, Ohio
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The anti-overdraft law (I really need to look up its formal name) just saved me from a fee today, caused by a stupid business practice of an online vendor. Virtually all of my overdrafts and fees have been caused by this exact scenario, and one time, it cost me over $300 as it caused a large number of other transactions to overdraft as well.

I maintain a separate checking account exclusively for online purchases. That way, if my card is ever compromised, they can only get the amount of money I set aside in that account. It's usually under $100; I transfer money in from another account as needed. (Prior to last year, I couldn't do this - I had to maintain an exceedingly large cushion at all times to prevent issues like the ones I've discussed previously, and the ones I'll outline below. All because between 1999 and 2010, I couldn't find a single bank that would allow me to refuse transactions that would cause an overdraft)

I purchased an item from this vendor, who used FedEx Smart Post for shipment. Smart Post has FedEx doing the long-haul from origin, but instead of a FedEx truck delivering the package to me, they ship it to your post office, and your regular mail carrier handles it over that "last mile". In this case, it got to my post office, but was returned to the sender from there; apparently, they had the address wrong on the package.

Now you've got the background, now for the stupidity.

When I called them up on it, they agreed to re-send the package immediately. But to do so, they needed to issue a new invoice. Instead of simply canceling the old invoice and issuing "store credit", they (claimed to) reverse the charges on the original invoice back to my debit card, then ran the card again - for the exact same amount on the exact same card. This would have been taken immediately, but the intervening credit would have been delayed several days. The extra $170 exceeded the amount of money I had left over in the account. I had authorized this vendor to take $170 at the time of purchase, not $340 now and a refund of $170 later.

Instead of a three way argument involving me, them, and my bank about who should cover any of the overdraft fees that would have been charged, I was able to cancel the order entirely, displaying my displeasure at their idiotic practice through boycott.

Kudos on a good law, and shame on private industry and the "free" market for abandoning this consumer-friendly practice over a decade ago.
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