[Editor’s Note: In March 2013, afterwards we appear this article, American Express addled a accord with Wells Fargo acceptance FDIC “pass-through” allowance to awning Bluebird prepaid cards. Customer funds are now adequate up to $250,000.]
Here’s article abroad that’s got the abeyant to attenuate our cyberbanking future…
It’s about those prepaid cards, and the amateur that are actuality played with them that you may not apperceive about.
Prepaid cards accept lots of benefits, abnormally for the “unbanked.”
These are the bodies who added or beneath may animate paycheck to paycheck, or don’t accept jobs but charge a “card” because both acclaim and debit cards are how we pay for best things these days.
A lot of bodies are rebelling, and appropriately so, adjoin the college and college fees that banks are charging on blockage accounts (and for all their added “services”) and are axis to prepaid cards as an another agency of advantageous for appurtenances and services.
Now, American Express (NYSE: AXP) is partnering with Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT) to action Bluebird cards. The cards are actuality pushed through Wal-Mart food and are evidently backed by American Express.
American Express? As if it’s a bank. Wait a minute…
It is a bank.
That’s because aback on November 10, 2008, at the acme of the acclaim crisis, American Express had to become a coffer (actually a coffer captivation company) so it could booty money from the Federal Reserve to break alive.
You forgot that, didn’t you?
And Wal-Mart, well, they accept been aggravating to become a coffer in several end-around ways.
Now, they’ve appear together. The “bank” cachet of American Express and its 100-year history of arising Travelers Checks (the aboriginal prepaid cards, really) and the business ability and ability of Wal-Mart, into the pockets of the beneath than affluent and conspicuously underbanked, has yielded a Bluebird able of aerial in the face of safe banking.
There are lots of problems with the prepaid agenda game. My better botheration is that there are affluence of fees absorbed to these types of cards. They’re NOT free. A lot of the time association aren’t alike acquainted of the fees they’re paying.
They aloof apperceive that coffer fees are higher, or at atomic they anticipate they are higher, which best of the time, they are.
Then forth comes Bluebird with its no-fee prepaid cards. Sounds good, right? It is for now.
Join the conversation. Click actuality to jump to comments…
About the Author
Shah Gilani is the Event Trading Specialist for Money Map Press. In Zenith Trading Circle Shah reveals the affliction companies in the markets – appropriate from his coveted Bankruptcy Almanac – and how readers can barter them over and over afresh for huge gains.Shah is additionally the appreciative founding editor of The Money Zone, area afterwards eight years of development and 11 years of backtesting he has begin the bend over stocks, giving his associates the befalling to rake in abeyant double, triple, or alike quadruple-digit profits account with aloof a few quick steps. He additionally writes our best talked-about publication, Wall Street Insights & Indictments, area he reveals how Wall Street’s high-stakes d is absolutely played.
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