Personal finance
GE Capital Purchasing MetLife Bank

Washington DC Might Divest from Bank of America, Wells Fargo

Miles By Discover Offers Relief to Noncommittal Travelers

Collection Agencies Resurrecting Old Debts Through Credit Card Offers

Treasury Doubles Purchase Limits on Electronic Savings Bonds

Cordray’s First Move as CFPB Head: Regulate Nonbanks

Weekly Wrap: Bank of America’s Worst Week Ever?

Dear U.S. Banks, Your Business Model Stinks

Shadow Banking Due for Some Time in the Spotlight

Weekly Wrap: Banking Slowly Dissolves?

Under the Roofs of Coffee Shops You’ll Find Your Online Bank

Brokerage Checking Still a Competitive Choice

Beware the Mirthful FOMC Meeting

Did ING Direct Customers Overreact to the Capital One Purchase?

No Balance Transfer Fee Offers Reappear But Hard to Exploit

Russell Simmons’ RushCard Lowers Fees, Is Still Bad

The Reason Why Freddie Mac Doesn’t Want to You to Refinance

New Bank Perks Cater to Tech-Savvy Customers

St. Louis Fed President: Raise Interest Rates

Whitney Warns: Banks to Banish Middle Class

Dime Savings Cites Regulations in Switch to State Charter

FDIC to Banks: Start Lending Again!

Weekly Wrap: Grey Days and a Sideshow

Weekly Wrap: Banking’s Spring Is Still Far, Far Away

American Express and Gen Y: BFF?

Weekly Wrap: Astrology is Bunk
This past Tuesday, residents of certain parts of the planet witnessed a rare astrological occurrence: the Transit of Venus. Venus, the next-closest planet to the Sun, crossed directly between the Earth and the Sun, so observers could see the silhouette of the planet against the backdrop of the Sun. Things like this presumably freak out the horoscope readers among us, and according to the Times of India, there are potential financial consequences relating to the Transit of Venus. “Will there be any effect on the Indian currency and economy?” the Times of India asks Sunita Chabra, “renowned astrologer.” “Yes,” he responds, “it indicates a good time for the common man which means that the government might be willing to review its economic policies.” Was the same true here in the States? Let’s check the news!

Ben Bernanke took to Congress to discuss the economy this week, and disappointed many by saying that the Fed has done all it can. So: thanks for nothing Transit of Venus. But the Fed did finalize its Basel III capital requirements for banks this week, which contains a lot of bad news for smaller banks. They will be subject to the same regulations as large banks — bad news for the common man, it seems. Also, Bernanke likely won’t be raising interest rates, which is bad news for savers. We looked at a few accounts that offer interest rates above 1% — there aren’t that many, which is more bad news for the common man.

On the other hand, the FDIC agreed to look into banks’ payday lending practices at the behest of a coalition of consumer advocacy groups. We understand the logic behind the consumer complaints, but banks actually behave more responsibly than other payday advance lenders: they provide backstops to the “debt trap” that these loans supposedly put consumers into.

This week was a mixed bag when it comes to other banking product news. As always, bad news first: PNC is scaling back its rewards program; SunTrust is slashing perks on its checking accounts; and overdraft fees are on the rise (and your bank isn’t being honest with you about it). In good news: BB&T launched a prepaid-only account for teenagers that has straightforward terms and fees, and great functionality, and Chase is eliminating overdraft fees on transactions under $5 — a nice break for consumers.

We also took a look at how to compare student checking accounts, and we offered some advice for using prepaid cards at restaurants — this is a bit of a problem, apparently.

Maybe you feel like all hope is lost in this down economy, and you’d like to go play your last $40 on scratchers because what the hell. Before you go and do that, read about SaveUp, the Intuit-powered program that encourages you to save money by turning money saved into, well, lottery tickets. The strange logic of SaveUp speaks to the weird times we live in right now.

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Weekly Wrap: Astrology is Bunk

Refinancing Your Mortgage Lines the Pockets of the Biggest Banks

Experian Unveils New Credit Score for the Underbanked

New Upromise Credit Card Gives 10% Cash Back at Major Online Retailers

The Best Experiences Your Credit Card Can Buy This Summer

Citi Offers New Way to Spend Rewards

Fed Study: CD Rates Are Less Attractive

Wells Fargo Raised Checking-Account Fee, Slashed Bill-Pay Fee

Weekly Wrap: Get Bullied, Get Rich

Taibbi: No Difference Between Banks and the Mafia

Why You Should Probably Raise Your Credit Limit, Especially When You Don’t Want the Money

Accounts Push Relationship Banking

Weekly Wrap: LIBOR Aside, You’re Still in Control

Fed Report Shows Mobile Banking Empowers the Underbanked

Top Gas Credit Cards to ‘Refill’ Your Wallet

Prepaid Cards for Payroll Purposes: Fair to Workers?

Weekly Wrap: Mobile Banking’s Onward March

Banks Close Revenue Gap from Overdraft Fee Losses

Banks Lack Social Media Efforts… Oh Really?

SpringCoin: Out to Automate Credit Counseling

Could Student Loan Forgiveness Help the Economy?

Chase United MileagePlus Club Card Takes Flight

Caviar and Champagne With Your Checking Account?

Weekly Wrap: Cash Rules Everything Around You? Not For Long

SmarterBank’s Checking Account Helps Pay Off Student Loans

Chinese Furious Over Banking Fees

Banks Should Use Prepaid Cards to Hook ‘Em While They’re Young

Prepaid Travel Debit Card Provider Eyes U.S.

Sallie Mae Credit Card Helps Pay Back Student Loans

Post-CARD Act, Banks Shift to Prepaid on Campus

Weekly Wrap: Things Are Not as They Seem

Gen Y Eyes Retirement with Rose Tinted Glasses

Low Interest Rates: A Ticking Time Bomb?

Are Discover Partner Gift Cards Worth the Rewards Points?

Kony Solutions’ Branding Problem: Bank Software Firm Has Killer’s Name

Weekly Wrap: Fancy Gadgetry, No Money

Weekly Wrap: Millenials’ Big Day at the Races

UFB Direct Adds Money Market Account With 1.15% APY