If it wants to continue to
top the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), Wells
is not taking the best approach.

The US lender has joined the
ranks of other rivals
and is to charge a fee of $3 per
month  for debit card users in five US states from October

The introduction of the debit card usage fee
comes five months after major US banks and credit unions teamed up
to push US consumers into lobbying
against the government’s
proposed restrictions to interchange
fees under the Dodd Frank Act.

The so-called Electronic Payments Coalition
had warned that banks would eliminate debit cards if the Act is
passed and consumers continue to use their cards for purchases.

In March, the Independent Community Bankers of
America (ICBA) had found in a survey that 72% of banks and credit
unions would implement annual or monthly charges for use of a debit


Debit card fees in five US states

Wells Fargo debit card customers in the sates
of Oregon, New Mexico, Nevada, Georgia and Washington will avoid
the monthly charge if they do not use their debit card or sign up
for particular checking accounts.

Wells Fargo is by no means the only bank to
try and push retail banking customers to stop using their debit

Atlanta based SunTrust Bank has also introduced monthly fees for
debit card use, charging $4 for checking account customers.

USAA has dropped its debit card rewards
following the Dodd
Frank Act which is set to remove the merchant fees banks charge for

The Fed issued its
final rules
on debit card interchange fee standards at the
beginning of July.

Regulation II, part of the Dodd-Frank and
Consumer Protection Act, caps US debit interchange fees at $0.21 –
which is almost twice as much as the Federal Reserve Board had
initially proposed.

Wells Fargo could not be reached for immediate