The federal consumer agency wants to get rid of what it calls ‘junk fees’.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is preparing to tackle what it calls junk fees – late fees, hotel resort fees and other additional costs that add billions to what Americans have to pay. pay for goods and services.

“The junk fees make it difficult for us to choose the best product or service because the real costs are hidden,” Rohit Chopra, the bureau’s director, said at a news conference Wednesday when the bureau initiated it. a request for public comment regarding the use of such fees. Such a request is a formal first step in a lengthy process of creating new rules for financial service providers.

Mr. Chopra said his agency is particularly interested in areas where vendors appear to be operating at a lockdown – for example, the $25 to $35 fees many credit card companies charge for overdue payments. estimated at $14 billion annually. Balance transfer fees are another focus: Consumers moved $35 billion in 2020, incurring an average fee of about 3%.

Bureau officials also cited service fees charged by concert ticket vendors and resort fees imposed by hotels as areas of concern.

Claiming junk fees is the latest move by the consumer agency to focus on fees levied on users. In December, the agency released a report on the $15 billion a year that banks collect Overdraft and fee not enough money. Under legal pressure, banks are cutting them back: Bank of America recently said it would cut fees from $35 to $10, and Capital One and Ally Financial have eliminated their fees entirely.

Mr Chopra said on Wednesday that the changes were “progressive, but still not enough.”

The agency has set a March 31 deadline for comments on the so-called junk fees. Bureau officials have said they intend to move quickly on developing the rule, but they also indicated that the issue will likely remain a focus throughout Chopra’s five-year term, which is expected lasts until 2026. The federal consumer agency wants to get rid of what it calls ‘junk fees’.

Fry Electronics Team

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