19SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr You aren’t alone if you’ve ever been hit with an overdraft fee from your bank.by: Heather LongAmerica’s three biggest banks — JPMorgan Chase (JPM), Bank of America (BAC) and Wells Fargo (WFC) — made more than $1.1 billion on overdraft fees in the first three months of the year.Despite efforts to curb these charges after the financial crisis, they are still a big money maker for banks.If the fee collection pace keeps up, the big three banks are on track bring in $4.5 billion in overdraft charges by the end of this year. That works out to about $20 for every American adult.Banks aren’t supposed to charge customers overdraft fees when they use an ATM to get cash unless the customer chooses or “opts in” to get the cash despite the fee. That said, banks can still levy a fee if someone’s balance goes negative because a check is cashed or an automatic payment such as rent goes through and there aren’t sufficient funds to cover it. continue reading »
Liechtenstein is planning to create a new public pension fund to tackle chronic underfunding, and ruled out taking legal action against those responsible for a sizeable funding gap at the original scheme, a government spokesman has said.Earlier this spring, a Swisscanto report identified several major problems with the Liechtenstein state pension fund, the PVS.Over the summer, the government commissioned legal experts to determine who was responsible for the CHF300m (€250m) funding gap at the CHF600m pension plan covering all public employees.The government spokesman told IPE the final report confirmed that board members, as well as the authorities, had been responsible for the dire financial situation at the PVS. But he said the government concluded there was not enough evidence to file individual lawsuits.“Therefore,” he said, “no charges will be brought forward.”Meanwhile, Liechtenstein’s Parliament has approved the creation of a new state pension fund, which is to take the form of an independent foundation.The new fund should be up and running by 1 July 2014.“It can be set up as a collective scheme, which would allow municipalities or state-owned companies to join,” the spokesman said.The “PVS neu” will be set up as a defined contribution scheme, unlike the previous defined benefit plan.The state is to account for most of the funding gap at the old pension plan by making a CHF206m contribution, increasing the funding level up to 90%.It will also grant an interest-free loan covering the final CHF101m, which is to be repaid during years with good returns.The government said employees would contribute around CHF200m to the fund’s buffers by cuts in benefits.Retirees will also have to transfer parts of their benefits into these buffers.However, a regional politician – Nikolaus Frick, who sits on a municipal council – has launched a campaign against the new fund, putting forward a separate proposal for a new fund that, according to him, will save more money.The government deemed his first proposal unconstitutional, but Parliament is to consider a second plan during its November session.If one of the politician’s proposals passes muster, the government will have to hold a referendum on these alternative pension fund solutions.
A hat-trick of tries from flanker Dean Budd, a single score from Robert Barbieri and a penalty and three conversions from Alberto Di Bernardo got Treviso the draw, which also saw them register a try bonus only five days after putting Munster to the sword in Italy. Though they avoided defeat, thanks to tries from Andrew Trimble and Stuart Olding and 19 valuable points from Paddy Jackson, Ulster’s slump in form has done considerable damage in their push for a home semi-final. Ulster had to settle for a share of the spoils in a 29-29 draw against Treviso, which means Mark Anscombe’s men have won just one of their last four games. Press Association After leading 20-10 early in the second half, the home side let their lead slip – and their cause was hardly helped by having Iain Henderson and Lewis Stevenson sent to the sin-bin in the first and second halves respectively. The Italian side sealed the draw in the last move of the game, which could have been a second successive Ravenhill win for them had Di Bernardo landed the difficult conversion.