FINANCIAL analysts at Wells Fargo Securities Inc. have found that some banks are actually charging consumers more for their bank accounts to get them to buy something or spend money.
The research firm, which tracks the impact of bank fees on the spending habits of Americans, found that the average cost of a bank account was about $1,400 for those who bought at least $250 of new bank credit cards.
But the study’s authors say the cost of other financial services, including debit cards and prepaid cards, is still much lower than that.
Wells Fargo’s research shows that the median monthly bill for bank credit and debit cards is $1.19 a month.
The average bill for prepaid cards is about $0.72 a month and the average monthly bill on cash and check is about one-third of that.
Wells Fargo’s study also found that consumers who bought credit cards on the secondary market saw their bills double between 2013 and 2015.
Wells’ analysis found that customers with the most recent credit card purchase were able to spend about 10% less than those who did not.
Other financial services that Wells Fargo studied included: a $1 million bank balance; a $500,000 checking account; and a $2,500 personal checking account.
It is not clear why Wells Fargo chose to include these types of services as its study focused on bank fees rather than other financial products.
However, it is clear that consumers are not getting value from the banks’ offerings.
According to the study, about 1 in 3 consumers do not actually use the financial services they have bought.
Wells also found, however, that the financial products that consumers buy do not always provide a significant return.
Wells found that only 5% of the people who use these services get a better return than if they had not purchased the financial product.
Overall, Wells Fargo found that bank credit was a major driver of spending.
“The average monthly spending was $1 (or $1 per day) higher in 2013 than it was in 2015,” Wells Fargo said in a statement.
There are many other studies that support Wells Fargo on the financial impact of banking fees.
And a 2016 study found that more than 2 million Americans are still paying for credit cards at higher rates than they should.
Wells said it did not expect to change its findings.