ECCB expresses concerns over increases in bank fees and charges

eccbThe Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) is concerned about the increase in commercial banks’ fees and charges across the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) and the effects on depositors.

The ECCB wishes to advise that it does not have the powers to regulate commercial banks’ fees and charges. As a consequence, individual banks determine their fees and charges.

Article 34 of the ECCB Agreement permits the ECCB to regulate the minimum savings rate, that is, the minimum interest rate paid on savings deposits.

The issue of bank fees and charges has been discussed by the Monetary Council which is the highest decision-making body of the ECCB. The Monetary Council comprises the eight Ministers with responsibility for Finance in the ECCB member countries. At its 83rd meeting held on 6 November 2015, the Monetary Council approved several recommendations related to bank fees and charges. These included:

1. Establishing an Office of the Ombudsman for Financial Services to mediate on behalf of customers with complaints and address other dispute resolution matters.

2. Establishing a Working Group to review commercial banks’ fees and charges and to report its findings and recommendations to the Monetary Council. This review will include the compilation of data from the ECCU and other jurisdictions within CARICOM.

3. Encouraging the ECCU Bankers Association to use moral suasion to establish a defined range of fees for various products and services which would be published for public information.

Commercial banks operating within the ECCU are encouraged to explain to their customers and the public at large, their rationale for the increases in fees and charges.

The ECCB encourages customers to remain calm, carefully consider their banking options and determine what services best meet their needs at this time.

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23 Comments

  1. Annon
    May 26, 2016

    Credit Union here I come. Just add some online options to sweeten the deal.

  2. We Have The Power
    May 25, 2016

    The Customers are the driving force of the financial institutions… We make them and we can break them. If we all close our accounts at the RBC they will backtrack and beg us to come back. I am 100% withdrawing all my money and closing my account.

    Let’s all do the same and we’ll see how much longer they’ll remind open.

  3. Face the Facts
    May 25, 2016

    $25 is too high. Half of that could be reasonable. Consider how much RBC will make. RBC is looking to get rich in the Caribbean. This could not happen in Canada. It could not be so high. Customers would make a big fuss.
    On the contrary, banks are offering interest free and other incentives to open an account or transfer their funds from one bank to another. RBC is also offering this.
    One of the banks commenced charging a $50 fee if customers close their accounts and bank with another.
    Think of this. $25 EC in Canadian funds is not much. This may be the reason why RBC greedily increased the cost so much.
    Shame RBC! Some of your customers cannot afford that cost.

  4. Leah Remy
    May 25, 2016

    But what is the big surprise there?
    So long Scotia Bank doing that….Is like you paying them to hold your money for you and then you STILL paying them to give you a loan (processing fees) and then they still charging interest fees on top of that.

  5. amanda
    May 25, 2016

    big big profit for rbc all over the world. Millions; and fees are going up up up. no incentive to have money in there

  6. IamanIdiot
    May 25, 2016

    As for nbd…just now they going to charge you $1 to enter the bank

    • cutegirl
      May 29, 2016

      is that true or false

  7. Mary Jane
    May 25, 2016

    When this comes into force I will be jumping ship from RBC to NCU only if NCU do not join with the othr banks.

  8. OLI
    May 25, 2016

    Government employees, go see the Gov’t Housing Loans Board

  9. May 25, 2016

    I wanted to take a loan for $17.000 ,I on the sum that I will pay back in in order to pay back the loan faster,the bank did not agree to my offer ,they wanted to decide and they would get almost the amount of the loan back in interest, which was a ruse ..I said no way. Took off my money from that bank and move to the credit union…before you decide to take a loan go every where and ask the same question concerning the interest and the way you should pay back because at the end of the day taking a loan makes life more difficult for you.

  10. dee
    May 25, 2016

    Karamba

  11. Joe
    May 24, 2016

    ECCB says it cannot do anything. The ECCU Monetary Council which oversees the ECCB cannot do anything. That means the Banks have a free-hand to charge as much as they please. Yet the ECCB can regulate payments (low interest rates paid) on Savings Accounts.

    The Bank Customers are being ripped off Big Time and the Politicians cannot do a bloody thing about it.

    Shameful. People, join a Credit Union after withdrawal of your monies.!!!!!!

  12. Reasoning
    May 24, 2016

    My best advice is withdraw all your monies…

  13. pissed off customer
    May 24, 2016

    Is not commercial banks alone. The industrial and agricultural bank increased their processing fees as well.

    Highway robbery. No warning, just boom in your face when you in front of the loans officer.

  14. May 24, 2016

    When in doubt, consider your local credit union.

  15. Anonymous
    May 24, 2016

    If ECCB can only regulate savings, then maybe the Monetary Council should re-consider the interest rate on savings. It makes absolutely no sense for customers to pay the bank more for holding their savings than the bank pays for access to that savings.

  16. Dominican
    May 24, 2016

    The other banks need to offer a concession to customers so they can move across! That would put some fear in them. Offer an easy way to transfer mortgages so customers can move without too much red tape and time wasting that’s the way to go! Come on NCCU offer switching concessions now.

  17. lightbulb
    May 24, 2016

    but wait,
    what is expected.
    interest rates are low,
    where else banks going to make their money??

  18. derp
    May 24, 2016

    aye remember people banks are not your friends

    • Dominican
      May 25, 2016

      Says a lazy thinker. You are just like the govt one way they know to make money is passport selling. Be creative lazy people

  19. AAGabriel
    May 24, 2016

    To my knowledge as of today it is only one bank that increased their charges considerably. We as customers of that bank need to withdraw our money now, close all accounts with this particular bank and then open an account with one of the other banks, making sure they have no plans of increasing their charges in the near future. Dominicans need to learn that they hold a certain amount of power as consumers.

    • Casual
      May 24, 2016

      Actually NBD increased their fees recently, but they were more subtle. For example, to withdraw from your account over the counter at the bank it is not $ 3. To withdraw from the ATM it is $1, they increased on some other fees as well, but it wasn’t a drastic one like RBC. However, all of these little charges here and there do add up. I guess NBD is hoping that the customers do not notice…

  20. crapo
    May 24, 2016

    I will certainly be considering my banking options if RBC impose a $25 charge per month on my account. They won’t only loose my deposit (which they maybe don’t care to much about anyway); but will loose the interest from my mortgage as I will certainly be looking to refinance.

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