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Banking Act Would Give Consumers "Freedom"

Eric Hodge:  North Carolina Congressman Brad Miller has introduced a bill he says will give consumers the power to switch banks if they’re disgruntled over fees. Leoneda Inge reports.

Recent announcements about rising fees from big banks like Bank of America have some consumers mad.  Democrat Brad Miller of Raleigh says that’s why he introduced the “Freedom and Mobility in Banking Act.”

Brad Miller:  "Banks should send money by electronically from one bank to another when you decide you want to transfer your accounts because you weren’t happy with your first bank."

Robert Bliss is a Finance Professor at the Wake Forest University Schools of Business.  He says new fee structures will likely hurt many consumers but Miller’s Act goes too far.

Robert Bliss:  "This bill would actually encourage people to walk away from accounts where they owe the bank money, particularly if the negative balances are due to the fees that banks are accessing."

The Center for Responsible Lending and the NAACP are early supporters of the bill.

Leoneda Inge is the co-host of WUNC's "Due South." Leoneda has been a radio journalist for more than 30 years, spending most of her career at WUNC as the Race and Southern Culture reporter. Leoneda’s work includes stories of race, slavery, memory and monuments. She has won "Gracie" awards, an Alfred I. duPont Award and several awards from the Radio, Television, Digital News Association (RTDNA). In 2017, Leoneda was named "Journalist of Distinction" by the National Association of Black Journalists.
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