Ever looked at your bank statement and wondered what those ridiculous charges are for? No matter what income bracket you’re in, bank charges are the bane of anyone’s financial existence. South Africa’s banking industry is amongst the most concentrated, yet competitive and diverse sectors in the country.
Just like any sector in the world of business, banks are businesses which provide products and services at nominal rates. These range, depending on the type of accounts, benefits and transactions.
Definitively, bank fees are nominal charges for various administrative services, such as withdrawing cash, transactions and requesting account statements. Bank fees are considered to constitute a major portion of a bank’s revenue, but recently South African banks have come under fire for having some of the highest in the world, with politicians reprimanding South Africa’s biggest retail banks, First National Bank, Standard Bank, ABSA, Nedbank and Capitec.
Standard Bank, Nedbank and ABSA were the first of the major retail banks to release their annual fee structure, with a complete restructure from Standard Bank, a slight increase from ABSA and an insignificant change from Nedbank.
Capitec announced their fee structure early this year, which saw a significant increase across most of their transactions, in stark contrast with the bank’s reputation as low-base cost bank with single price transaction costs.
Late to the party is First National Bank, whose 2017/2018 banking structure came into effect on 1 July 2017.
Below is a breakdown of the fee structures of South Africa’s retail banks’ main accounts. Fees are based on pay-as-you-transact fees after bundle limits, where available.
|ABSA Gold Cheque Account||2016 Fees||R500 transaction in 2016||2017 Fees||R500 transaction in 2017||% change from 2016 to 2017|
|Withdrawal (Native)||R3.95 + R1.30/R100||R10.45||R3.95 + R1.35/R100||R10.70||+2.4%|
|Withdrawal (Other)||R9.95 + R1.30/R100||R16.45||R9.95 + R1.35/R100||R16.70||+1.5%|
|Deposit (ATM)||R3.00 + R1.30/R100||R9.50||R3.95 + R1.35/R100||R10.70||+12.6%|
|Debit order (internal)||Free||Free||–|
|Debit order (external)||R16.00||R16.95||+5.9%|
|Account fee (PAYT)||R40.00||R42.00||+5%|
|Standard Bank Elite Account||2016 Fees||R500 transaction in 2016||2017 Fees||R500 transaction in 2017||% change from 2016 to 2017|
|Withdrawal (Native)||R4.00 + 1.20% of value||R10.00||R1.80 per R100||R9.00||-10.0%|
|Withdrawal (Other)||R6.70 + R4.00 + 1.20% of value||R16.70||R6.70 + R1.80 per R100||R15.70||-6.0%|
|Deposit (ATM)||R4.00 + 1.30% of value||R10.50||R1.80 per R100||R9.00||-14.3%|
|Debit order (internal)||R4.20||R4.50||+7.1%|
|Debit order (external)||R13.10||R16.00||+22.1%|
|Account fee (PAYT)||R55.00||R55.00||–|
|Nedbank Savvy Account||2016 Fees||R500 transaction in 2016||2017 Fees||R500 transaction in 2017||% change from 2016 to 2017|
|Withdrawal (Native)||R4.00 + R1.32/R100||R10.60||R4.50 + R1.40/R100||R11.50||+8.5%|
|Withdrawal (Other)||R11.00 + R1.32/R100||R17.60||R11.50 + R1.40/R100||R18.50||+5.1%|
|Deposit (Intelligent depositor ATM)||R5.00 + R0.66/R100||R8.30||R5.50 + R0.70/R100||R9.00||+8.4%|
|Debit order (internal)||R6.00||Free||–|
|Debit order (external)||R15.00||Free (R5.00 on PAYT)||–|
|Capitec Global One||2016/17 Fees||R500 transaction in 2016/17||2017/18 Fees||R500 transaction in 2017/18||% change from 2016/17 to 2017/18|
|Deposit (ATM)||80c /R100||R4.00||90c per R100||R4.50||+12.5%|
|Account fee (PAYT)||R5.25||R5.50||+4.8%|
First National Bank
|FNB Gold Cheque Account||2016/17 Fees||R500 transaction in 2016/17||2017/18 Fees||R500 transaction in 2017/18||% change from 2015/16 to 2016/17|
|Withdrawal (Other)||R7.00 + R1.85/R100||R16.25||R8.00 + R1.85/R100||R17.25||+6.2%|
|Deposit (ATM)||R0.80 per R100||R4.00||R0.90 per R100||R4.50||+12.5%|
|Debit order (internal)||Free||Free||–|
|Debit order (external)||Free||Free||–|
While you may find a bank that suits your financial needs, here are a few tips to minimise transaction costs:
• Avoid paying cheque or cash deposit fees by having money transferred into your account.
• Make use of Internet, cellphone and telephone banking and your bank’s mobile apps.
• Swipe your debit, cheque and credit card when purchasing.
• Shop online with your cheque or credit card.
• Balance enquiries are free on mobile app, cellphone, telephone and Internet banking channels.
Visit your nearest branch or website for more details.