Dems Slam Bank Overdraft Fees

Banks are set to make $38.5 billion on overdraft fees this year
By Mat Probasco,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 21, 2009 2:34 AM CDT
Senate Banking Chairman Christopher Dodd complains that consumers are getting "whacked" by overdraft fees.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Washington Democrats are using words like "criminal" and "rip-off" in a round of complaints about banking overdraft fees, reports the Washington Post. US banks are poised to rake in some $38.5 billion from overdraft fees this year, usually without a warning to customers that they're about to draw too much money out of an account.

"People out there are getting whacked," complained Sen. Christopher Dodd, who plans to introduce a bill requiring banks to get customers' permission, rather than automatically allowing overdrafts. "They should have the right to say, 'Deny me the transaction.'" Overdraft fees at large banks have increased an average 4% this year, with banks charging an average $35 per overdraft.