South Bay News

Local millionaire pulls his money out of BofA

Friday, November 04, 2011

On the eve of the nationwide Bank Transfer Day campaign, organizers are urging customers of big banks to close out their accounts and join credit unions or community banks on Saturday. A well known South Bay millionaire has chosen to do just that independent that campaign.

Mike Fox Sr. is a prominent San Jose businessman and philanthropist who is pulling his money out of Bank of America. He says the bank can and should do more when it comes to loan modifications and the foreclosure crisis.

"I'm that jerk that will stand up to anything and a get a little flack from my wife and family once in a while, but somehow my conscious just makes me want to be that jerk that has to stand up for what's right and even what's wrong," said Fox.

Fox's action comes on the eve of Bank Transfer Day, a movement launched on Facebook. It was designed to punish banks for proposed debit card fees. This week Bank of America joined Chase and Wells Fargo and cancelled those plans.

"I think they realized that it would be detrimental to go forward with a fee like this in light of all the consumer backlash," said Norma Garcia from Consumers Union.

ABC7 talked with the organizer of Bank Transfer Day, Kristen Christian, via Skype.

"I think it's unfortunate that the executives don't understand that it's not the fee itself that supporters are taking contention with, it's the principal behind it," said Christian.

Christian says Bank Transfer Day should not be confused with the occupy Wall Street movement or anger over the mortgage mess, but many people say it's an idea whose time has come.

"We're not out to topple Bank of America, I don't think we could, but we are out to get their attention and I think we are getting there," said Father George Wanser from Most Holy Trinity Catholic Church.

The Credit Union National Association says 650,000 people switched to credit unions last month, but not everyone is ready for change.

"They don't charge me, anything, so I keep staying with Bank of America," said Bank of America customer Chi Li.

Many credit unions will be open extra hours on Saturday to take advantage of public sentiment, which seems to be coming from a number of fronts.

(Copyright ©2014 KGO-TV. All Rights Reserved.)

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san jose, bank of america, south bay news, karina rusk
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