HSBC Online Account - new fees starting sept. 23 (Updated with clarification statement)

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UPDATE: A rep for HSBC has finally responded to our request for clarification on the fees.

From HSBC:

"A recent communication to HSBC Online Savings Account customers was intended to advise of both an account name change and some account fee changes effective September 23, 2012.

"Feedback from our customers has indicated some confusion about our fee change relating to 'Funds Transfer-in.'

"This is an existing fee for this account. It relates only to outside 'wire transfers' into this account, and it is decreasing from $15 to $12. It does not apply to Bank to Bank transfers, check deposits, or direct deposits of payroll and tax refund checks.

"We apologize for any confusion to our customers and are always available to talk with our customers regarding any questions about their account."

Only HSBC can screw up the announcement of a reduction in fees ...

I transfered all my deposits to AMEX Savings after getting the unbelievably poorly crafted email from HSBC. Why would anybody take it mean anything other than the literal "the transfer of funds from another person's account, or another financial institution to your HSBC account"? Nowhere does it say anything about wire transfers. I then requested closure via BankMail and was asked if I was really sure and the fee "clarification". Since HSBC is no longer competitive, it was time to go anyway.

I'm still mystified as to why they have not sent a clarification email out to everybody. Very, very poorly executed and managed.

xoneinax said:   Only HSBC can screw up the announcement of a reduction in fees ...

Wish I could give more than one green to this!

I now have two accounts (mine and the wife's) with a penny in each.

The interest rate and the quality of service has drastically deteriorated recently. There's really no reason to stay with this bank other than for their international banking services.

Asked for clarification and this is their reply:

Thank you for contacting HSBC Bank USA, N.A.

Effective September 23, 2012, the incoming wire transfer fee will be
changed from $15.00 to $12.00 on your Online Savings Account. You will
not be assessed with any fee for receiving direct deposits into your

Please note: You may initiate a Bank to Bank Transfer from or into your
account. When using your HSBC Bank to Bank Transfers service through
Personal Internet Banking, you may only transfer funds between your
accounts with various financial institutions located in the United
States. Please be informed that there is no fee for Bank to Bank
Transfers service.

If you have any further questions or concerns...

mrvirgo said:   The stupid email gave me the push I needed to close my HSBC savings account which I've had since 2006. The interest rate keeps dropping; ACHs are slow; I get a lot of junk snail mail and yesterday's badly phrased email. More than enough reasons to say good-bye HSBC.

I've also had an HSBC Online Savings account for years and I decided to close after this as well. It was completely ridiculous that this confusing email went out to begin with.

glad to know that BtB transactions are still free.. but who is the arse hat who ok'd this e-mail to be sent out?? I think I'm going to pull my $$ and maybe put it into a fidelity acct.. the interest rates are next to nothing now.

I only use HSBC because it is the bank with my closest branch so I have the Online Savings to withdraw/deposit funds to. I agree though in that if it wasn't my closest branch, I would have closed out the account as well.

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