Greater Pennsylvania Abstract title agent Tom Castellano, like many other title agents, can tell you story after story if banks who don't even get around to sending lending documents, including the mortgage, until hours after a real estate settlement. The money is always wored late, too.
That's your friendly bank.
But that's not the story Tom Castellano shared with me last week. His nephew, a Marine, was recently deployed to Kuwait. From there, it's on to Afghanistan. Lucky him. Anyway, he was at a food concession in Kuwait, where there are some American restaurants like McDonalds, and I guess he must have wanted a happy meal but had no cash.
A friendly bank, Wells Fargo, just happened to have an ATM machine at the ready. Tom's nephew was charged $5, just to use the machine. In addition, a 3% surcharge was imposed on his withdrawal of his own money. When his wife called Wells Fargo to complain about charging a ridiculous fee to an American soldier in a designated combat zone, a smiling customer service rep told her, "Well, he shouldn’t be spending money in a combat zone.”
According to Wells Fargo's web page, they will charge $5 ATM fees for use outside the U.S., as well as 3% of the amount of the withdrawal. But at their "worldwide military bank," they claim that "It's an honor to serve those who serve our country."
And take their money.
Wells Fargo, the nation's fourth largest bank, is under investigation by the DOJ for preying upon unsophisticated borrowers during the housing bubble, most of them black, and steering them into high-cost sub-prime loans.