Unhappy with your bank? You’re not alone

Bank Window, La Pryor, Texas 1939. Russell Lee, American (Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, DC)

J.D. Power just released a study that found that nearly 10% of bank customers switched banks last year:

The 9.6% who moved their money compared to 8.7% in 2010 and 7.7% in 2009 – an increase the study attributed to a backlash against increased fees, coupled with poor service and unmet customer expectations.

“It is apparent that new or increased fees are the proverbial straws that break the camel’s back,” said Michael Beird, director of Power’s banking services practice.

Most of the change is attributable to a move to smaller banks and credit unions.

Among banks with more than $33 billion in assets, annual switching rates are now running at 10% or more on average, Power said. The defection rate for small banks and credit unions now averages only 0.9%, a significant drop from 8.8% last year, it said.

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