Top Ten Videos to watch

A Man Operating A Tv Camera
Maurice White
March2Justice
'News One Now' With Roland Martin Taping
Bill Cosby
Activists In Los Angeles Gather To Burn Likenesses Of The Confederate Flag
Flint Firebirds V Windsor Spitfires
CBC Message To America: Rep. Conyers Addresses The Damage Inflicted On Our Communities By Poverty, Mass Incarceration And Lack Of Economic Development
Iowa Caucus Ted Cruz
NewsOne Now NAACP Image Awards Preview
Student sitting at a desk in a classroom
Slavery Stock image
The 16th Annual Wall Street Project Gala Fundraising Reception
Ava DuVernay
Roland Martin Blasts Stacey Dash For Comments About BET, Black Networks
President Obama Delivers State Of The Union Address At U.S. Capitol
Ava DuVernay
2016 North American International Auto Show
Democratic National Committee Presidential Primary Debate
88th Oscars Nominations Announcement
Democratic debate
Dream Speech
GOP Presidential Candidates Debate In Charleston
US President Barack Obama speaks on the
24593149
2011 Winter TCA Tour - Day 5
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 18, 2015: Two wooden stand-in Oscar statuettes are ready to be taken on
Woman Holding Dollars - Isolated
President Barack Obama Delivers His State Of The Union Address
Leave a comment

WASHINGTON (AP) — Democratic lawmakers 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 said Thursday that they’ve asked Attorney General Eric Holder to see if big banks violated antitrust laws before announcing the fees.

Welch said the lawmakers have no evidence of collusion. But he said the timing of the fees merits an investigation.

“You don’t have a competitive marketplace,” Welch said at a news conference.

Bank of America said last month that it would charge its customers $5 a month if they use their debit cards for purchases. Customers who use their cards only at ATMs will not have to pay the fee.

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

The fees have sparked public outrage and helped fuel anti-Wall Street protests. Many have criticized the banks for charging to use debit cards after those same banks received hundreds of billions of dollars in taxpayer-funded bailouts. Bank of America, Chase and Wells Fargo were among the recipients of rescue funds.

Bank of America, the nation’s largest bank, said the monthly charge was necessary because the Federal Reserve this year capped the fees that it can charge merchants for swiping debit cards. Congress directed the Fed cap swipe fees under the financial overhaul law.

On Thursday, representatives for Bank of America and Chase declined to comment on the lawmakers’ request for a probe. A representative for Wells Fargo wasn’t immediately available for comment.

Also requesting the investigation were Democratic Reps. John Conyers of Michigan, Keith Ellison of Minnesota, Mike Honda of California and Raul Grijalva of Arizona.

The lawmakers said statements made by some banks and their trade associations raise questions about possible coordination.

In a letter to Holder, the lawmakers cite an e-mail by the Texas Bankers Association to its members. The e-mail was sent after legislation failed that would have delayed the cap on swipe fees.

The e-mail said: “Now the industry must regroup and each and every one of you must decide how you are going to pay for the use of debit cards. It may be through a monthly fee.”

The Merchants Payments Coalition, an organization of trade groups for a variety of retailers, supported the lawmakers’ move.

Bank of America will start charging the fee early next year. Chase and Wells Fargo haven’t said when they will make a final decision on whether to roll out the debit-card fee more broadly.

Also On News One: