It’s a new year, and there’s a new, more aggressive Barack Obama in the White House.
Last year’s theme in Washington was straightforward: The president proposes and the Senate disposes. Whether legislation to create jobs, grand budget bargains to cut spending and raise taxes, or nominations for officials to do the work of government, Republican senators ensured that passing any important (and many unimportant) issues required a super-majority they would in turn deny.
Yesterday, Bank of America announced it was dropping the $5 monthly fee on its debit card service for checking accounts. The fee had earned the ire of the bank’s customers and became a symbol of corporate excess.
Bank officials blamed the card fee on the government, saying that new rules limiting fees they charge stores to process card payments forced them to shift costs to consumers. We noted that a lot of other banks operating under the same rules don’t charge those kind of fees, and suggested you take advantage of your options: If you don’t like how Bank of America is treating you, take your money elsewhere. More and more people are doing just that.