CFPB Investigates Impact of Overdraft Fees

Bloomburg Businessweek
Friday, August 1, 2014

The $30 billion banks collect in overdraft fees each year may shrink if the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau imposes new rules on the practice. The spectre of new rulemaking has arisen in the wake of a new CFPB report which found that overdraft and non-sufficient funds fees account for about 75 percent of opted-in consumers’ total checking account fees, averaging over $250 per year. “Despite recent regulatory and industry changes, overdrafts continue to impose heavy costs on consumers who have low account balances and no cushion for error,” Richard Cordray, the bureau’s director, said. Cordray compared the overdraft fees to short-term loans, saying that a person who overdrew a checking account by $24 and covered it with a deposit three days later would pay an overdraft fee of $34, the equivalent of loan with an annual rate of 17,000 percent.