Wireless giant Verizon Wireless (NYSE: VZ) must have been getting advice from the board at Bank of America because that is the only explanation for their decision to try and impose a $2 convenience fee for all one-time credit card transactions for subscribers after significant customer backlash. They payments would apply only to one-time payments, like a monthly bill. Convenience fees like this are routinely used for credit card transactions in other industries, like utilities.
Their stated goal was to steer people away from using credit cards for their transactions and towards the use of electronic checks, which are cheaper. While I’m sympathetic to their plight as Visa (NYSE: V)and MasterCard charge extortion fees for their services. Somehow this is seen as a boon for consumers. I’d wager that if Verizon wanted the flow of orders to continue at the same volume then they would need people to continue pay with credit, because, let’s get real, Americans don’t have any money in their checking accounts anymore.
The same lobbying group that got Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) to back off on their debit-card fee was behind this effort, Change.org.
Verizon Wireless rose slightly in trading on Friday closing the year at $40.12 per share, up about 12% in 2011.
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