Sunday, November 6, 2011

American Consumers Say: These boots are made for walking.

Consumers participated in "Move Your Money" and "Bank Transfer" starting yesterday, a movement that is paying off for community credit unions and community banks. It all started with Bank of America's announcement to charge debit card fees.

At least 650,000 consumers have already joined credit unions since Sept. 29, the day Bank of America announced plans to impose its controversial $5 debit card fee, according to a nationwide survey of credit unions by the Credit Union National Association.

That's more than a year's worth of members in a single month -- with credit unions adding 600,000 members in all of 2010.

The new memberships in October amount to $4.5 billion in new savings accounts, CUNA said.

Bank of America dropped its idea of debit fees, but reports suggest that fees will pop up for other things. Bank of America has financial problems apparently stemming from its mortgage lending practices. The bank is reported to have "exhausted $20 billion in reserves," cut 40,000 jobs, and eliminated some branches.

U.S. consumers ended the honeymoon with Nextflix after the company announced a more expensive, two-company solution to watching movies. CEO Hastings apology to faithful consumers has not been effective:
"It is clear from the feedback over the past two months that many members felt we lacked respect and humility in the way we announced the separation of DVD and streaming, and the price changes. That was certainly not our intent, and I offer my sincere apology."

Last month, Netflix reported losses of 800,000 customers and a 37% drop in shares. Increased losses are predicted for next year. Blockbuster sees these events as an opportunity to regain its once profitable business.

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