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I actually didn't lose my shirt, but I thought the title appropriate.
A few years ago, I opened a bank account with a shiny new bank called Washington Mutual, it was a great bank, I used that account as my transfer account. Because of the interest rates associated with some of the online banks and since they were fairly new and I always like trying new things, it made more sense to keep my money in an online bank.
After the banks had brought America to it knees, Washington Mutual was acquired by J.P. Morgan Chase it wasn't bad and it actually worked great until 2010. I received an email stating that I had over drafted my account by $10. This was news to me since I had never done that before. I immediately called Chase and asked what had happened and how I incurred this charge. They informed me that policies had changed and I needed to initiate direct deposit or have more than $5000 in the bank with them. I politely told the person on the phone that I had been a long time customer of this bank and would appreciate it if they would remove the charge. They told me that in this one instance they would reverse the charge but I would have to keep up to $5000 in the bank or have direct deposit. I promptly thanked the individual, walked over to the nearest local Chase bank and closed my account.
Here is the funny thing to me, essentially, I have to pay the banks for them to hold on to my money so they can turn around and lend it out at an astronomical interest rate and then as a thank you, they give me a fraction of a percent. This makes no sense to me but, we the American people allow this to happen. To make matters worse, in the case of the 2008 financial melt down, the banks took our money, put it at risk, lost it and promptly told the American public that "We don't have your money right now." This is to me is the WORST ponzi scheme if ever there was one.
Here is what you can do. Your best bet is to fire the big banks. Here is a list of them:
Transfer all of your cash assets out of the banks into an online bank, credit union or a local community bank that isn't going to charge you ATM fees, debit card fees or any other fees. Don't give them your business and tell your friends to do the same. If banks don't have customers, they don't have incomes. The more people that do this the better off America will be.
UPDATE: I just received this in my email from mint.com about 2 days after I wrote this post.