Lawmakers Seek Probe on Banks' New Debit Card Fees

October 13, 2011 - 10:15 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Members of Congress are asking the Justice Department to investigate whether Bank of America and other major banks improperly worked together to charge customers new monthly fees for using their debit cards.

Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vt., and four other Democrats say they've asked Attorney General Eric Holder to open a probe into possible collusion by the banks.

Bank of America said last month that it would charge its customers $5 a month if they use their debit cards for purchases, a move that sparked public outrage. The nation's largest bank said it instituted the monthly charge because the government capped the fees they can charge merchants for swiping the debit cards.

Chase and Wells Fargo are testing $3 monthly debit-card fees in select markets.