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Saturday, January 1, 2000

Fed Facts Fed Announces 2001 Prices for Financial Services

The Federal Reserve Board recently approved the 2001 fee schedules for the Fed's payments services, with overall prices projected to increase 4.2 percent from 2000 levels. Because of price reductions in recent years, however, the overall price level has risen only half a percent since 1996.

Check fees will increase approximately 3 percent, due in part to the costs involved in check automation and electronic check technology—investments that should result in cost savings that can ultimately be passed on to customers. Increased operating efficiencies have enabled Reserve Banks to hold the line on fees for Fedwire funds, book-entry securities and ACH in 2001.

Price books were mailed to Eighth District institutions on Nov. 22. Complete product and fee information for national and local services is available on the Fed's Financial Services web site:

Reg. Z Revisions Clarify Credit Card Offers

The Fed has amended the disclosure requirements for credit and charge card solicitations and applications under Regulation Z, "Truth in Lending," to help promote consumer awareness of the terms and rates of credit card financing. Under the rule, direct mail and other solicitations to open card accounts must disclose the annual percentage rate (APR) and other cost information in a readily noticeable and understandable manner, generally in the form of a table. The amendment provides specific guidance on the content, format and placement of this disclosure information.

Revisions are effective immediately. Compliance is mandatory as of Oct. 1, 2001. For more information, contact Henry E. Dove Jr. at (314) 444-8846.