Cur­rency fees are in the spot­light

Money Magazine Australia - - IN BRIEF -

When you con­vert money into a for­eign cur­rency, trans­fer money over­seas or use your credit card or debit card to buy some­thing on­line in a for­eign cur­rency, you’ll be hit with a fee. These fees cer­tainly add up – Aussies are charged $2 bil­lion in for­eign trans­ac­tion fees ev­ery year.

And we’re pay­ing a lot more than peo­ple in other coun­tries do. Ac­cord­ing to Rod Sims, chair of the Aus­tralian Com­pe­ti­tion and Con­sumer Com­mis­sion, if you send $1000 over­seas from Aus­tralia, on av­er­age you’ll pay $9 more than if you sent an equiv­a­lent amount from the UK and $23 more than if you sent it from the US.

The Aus­tralian gov­ern­ment has asked the ACCC to put these ex­ces­sive fees un­der the mi­cro­scope and re­port back early next year with its rec­om­men­da­tions. RateCity’s Sally Tin­dall says a hand­ful of banks boldly scrapped their over­seas fees in the past 12 months and now it’s time for the big banks to step up to the plate. Time will tell.

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