(Opinion+Info) If you haven't checked your bank statements lately you may be unaware that Spanish banks have upped their charges for the privilege of keeping an account with them and for the use of a credit card. Charges were increased by a whopping 15% or more. While it might be easy to think that the reason behind it is because they don't expect much growth for the rest of the year, they still have to pay their executives those amazing bonuses. This, of course, would be entirely untrue. The real reason is that their profits will have come down because of the general downturn in the economy and they have thousands of properties on their books that came back to them from people who have been unable to meet their mortgage payments - and the cost of a mortgage has gone up, too. (Doesn't matter, you'll have a hard time getting one anyway.) Specifically, charges have gone up as follows, according to the Bank of Spain:>>>
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- Commission (charges) for maintaining and administrating a current account average €25.80, or 15.3% more.
- Charges for a savings account average €25.16, or 15.7% more.
- Plastic money: the annual charge for a debit card went up to €19.89 (15%) annually, and for credit cards, up to €36.39 per year (up by €7.4%).
- Loans: Customers subscribing to a loan must now pay 1.05% of the amount for reseach and another 3.19% on opening the credit account. That's up by 0.2% so far this year. (Wear and tear on trying to get a loan in the first place has no monetary value, apparently.)
- Mortgages: The research will cost 0.15% more than last year, plus 0.89% of the total amount, and the commission on opening the mortgage account went up from 2.71% to 2.76%. (Wear and tear ... see above.)