|Twenty-five (25) years ago I started out with Great Western Bank for checking and my mortgage. Washington Mutual bought Great Western and I stayed with WAMU. Then Chase (aka JP Morgan Chase) bought out WAMU. This last change has not been good since the beginning, and just got worse. Based on their latest decision to charge a $12 monthly service fee to my 23-year-old son --- and anyone else who nets less than $500 per week, I am not staying. It is a discriminatory fee and, if the lower income customer wants the "privilege" of banking with Chase, then they will have to pay $144 per year to do so. If Chase does not want my son as a customer, then they do not want me as a customer. Not only will I be taking my checking account cashflow with me, I will also be transferring a considerable balance on their Slate credit card to a competitor.|
Ironically, I have been paying $6 per month for years for a Plus Account I have only used once or twice. I decided to get the package which has overdraft coverage, while going through a divorce 10 years ago. My now 23-year-old son opened his account with WAMU at age 15, and has a stable employment history with the same supermarket since 2003. Last year he applied to Chase for a credit card, but they turned him down for lack of credit history. So, I added him onto my Chase Slate VISA to help establish his credit history. Then he started to get a monthly "invitation" from Deb Walden, EVP of Customer Experience, Chase Card Services, to open a Chase Slate VISA. Obviously, at Chase, the right hand does not know what the left hand is doing --- and Chase is wasting everyone's money doing it. My guess is Chase figures the $12 monthly fee will cover all their credit card solicitations to customers who are already cardholders!
This past week, my son received a notice from a Jennifer Myhre, Sr. VP, Chase Consumer Banking, informing him the new fee would apply as of February 8, 2011. To avoid the fee, he would have to have at least one direct deposit of $500 or more, keep a minimum daily daily balance of $1,500 or more, or keep a balance of $5,000 or more in other accounts, or pay $25 or more in qualifying account fees. This is not going to happen. My son also attends college part time. As a Type 1 diabetic he has $300 in monthly medical expenses for insurance premiums and co-pays. My son isn't going to take on a second job for the privilege of being a Chase customer. Needless to say, Chase did not send me the same letter, just the customers they do not really want.
On the Home Page of for Personal Banking, under News & Announcements, Chase claims: THE WAY FORWARD --- Highlights from JP Morgan Chase's ongoing efforts to improve our economy's health." Obviously, Chase believes its own propaganda, or maybe that if they line their own pockets, they improve their own financial health as part of the banking industry.
Besides posting this Report, I am mailing a hard copy complaints to James Dimon, Chairman & CEO, Deb Walden, Jennifer Myhre, Lauren Tyler, Investor Relations, Stephanie Mudick, Consumer Practices, with copies to , Corporate Social Responsibility and , Chase Businesses. I started to shop for a new bank yesterday, and am posting a notice on a bulletin board in the common cafeteria area for over 1,500 employees at my place of work. There is a Chase branch on the corner of our office park. Chase needs to receive full credit for its latest ingenious tactic of getting money from people who can least afford it during an ongoing recession.