Union Bank Earns Praise for Move to Serve ‘Unbanked Customers’

June 20, 2013
Eastern Group Publications  
credit card news

Union Bank is offering a type of account specifically for low- to moderate-income consumers who shun conventional bank accounts that they find complex and costly. Banking policy experts at the nonprofit Greenlining Institute say the new option could solve the banking needs of such consumers. The “Access Account” offers ATM access, mobile banking, direct deposit, and discounted money orders, with no overdraft fees. The account does not provide checks or online bill pay. An Access Account currently is available in California, Oregon, and Washington; can be opened with just $25; and remains open as long as the balance is above $0. “We’ve long been concerned about the 34 million U.S. households – disproportionately people of color – who are unbanked or underbanked, and who often end up paying much higher fees at check cashing stores or other alternative services,” said Sasha Werblin of the Greenlining Institute. He added, “We’re glad Union Bank has moved closer toward meeting the needs of these families, and expect other banks to do the same.”
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