Average Bank ATM Fee Rises to New High of $4.57

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In 2016, ATM fees increased by 0.7% to $2.90 per transaction for consumers who use machines outside their own network. Consumers’ own banks also tack on an average $1.67 for using another bank’s ATMs. That means non-customers now pay an average of $4.57 for using an out-of-network ATM, up 1.1% compared with 2015 fees, and the tenth consecutive annual rise in the total transaction fee.

Over the past five years, the fee for using an out-of-network ATM has risen 12.2%, according to Bankrate. If there’s any good news about bank fees it is that checking account overdraft fees fell 0.1% in 2016, from $33.07 to $33.04. That tiny drop is the first after 17 consecutive years of overdraft fee increases.

The percentage of banks now offering non-interest-bearing checking accounts with no fees attached has reached 38%, up from 37% last year but down from 75% seven years ago.

The five cities with the highest combined ATM fees are Phoenix ($5.07), Atlanta ($5.05), Cleveland ($4.98), Miami ($4.94) and Denver ($4.88).

Six cities where checking overdraft fees exceed the national average of $33.04 are Philadelphia ($35.20), Baltimore ($34.80), Milwaukee ($34.79), New York ($34.63), along with Phoenix and Pittsburgh ($34.05).

Greg McBride, CFA, Bankrate’s chief financial analyst said:

The average overdraft fee has been increasing year in and year out for 17 consecutive years. And that streak has been broken this year. I think it’s too early to say that we’ve reached the peak, particularly because we’ve seen more increases than decreases [among surveyed banks].

Bankrate also noted that 594 U.S. banks required to report overdraft fees derived $11.16 billion in overdraft fee income in 2015. The most common fee for the eighth year in a row is $35, and increases outnumbered decreases by five to one, according to the survey of 10 banks and thrifts in each of 25 large U.S. markets.