Where do ATM charges go?

May 28th, 2014

article_45Ever wondered where the money goes when you pay the annoying $2.50 charge to use a local ATM machine?

It’s tempting to think that you’re paying a bank or a financial service provider. That’s partly true. But you’re also lining a normal investor’s pockets as well.

Most private ATMs are actually owned by individual investors – normal people – who put up the cash to install the machine and then receive a cut of the fee charged for every withdrawal.

Typically, the ATM service provider – the company that insures and maintains the machines – will receive around half of the fee ($1.20).

The venue receives $1 per withdrawal, while the investor receives the remaining $0.30.

The machines can cost between $11,000 and $28,500, according to Own Your Own ATM, and they are becoming quite a popular investment.

An average $11,000 machine might be used 26 times a day, the company said, which would generate at least $235 per month for the investor.

If this was fed into the market-leading savings account, the machines would take around four years to pay for themselves, before all subsequent revenue became profit.

The problem is, of course: this burgeoning industry is encouraging people to profit from a basic service – allowing people access to their cash.

And the $2.50 fee is a steep cost for convenience. Consumers who want to be more efficient with their cash should avoid private ATM machines and stick wherever possible to their own bank’s ATM network, which will rarely charge a fee.

Cards at the Ready: Online Spending Up By Over 10%

January 13th, 2014

Australians’ online spending has risen by more than 10% in a year, as the 2013 total approaches $15 billion. Measured by proportion, however, this remains some way behind other major Western economies.

credit card online (article_02bc)National Australia Bank’s online retail sales index has shown that $14.6 billion was spent between November 2012 and November 2013 – over 10% higher than the previous year.

Consequently, the calendar year of 2013 could see figures approaching $15 billion, depending on how many people turned to their credit cards to complete their Christmas shopping online.

And despite concerns about the ease of buying abroad, well over $10 billion of this online spending has remained in Australia, benefiting domestic retailers.

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Spending a Penny at Work

May 28th, 2013

Stocks and Stopwatch

Aussies are putting a new spin on the old British expression “spend a penny” after it was revealed that a former award-winning employer has been financially penalising its staff for taking comfort breaks.

Aegis Australia, which won a best-employer award in 2011, deducted the pay of a number of its employees at its Werribee call centre for using the toilet.

The centre’s strict electronic system triggers alerts when staff members are away from their desks for longer than 90 seconds, requiring them to explain their absence.

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Open Up OneTab to Pay For All Your Drinks

March 27th, 2013

For those of you in South Australia, there’s a new smartphone application available that will removed the need to get your wallet out when you’re paying for a drink.

The OneTab application was developed by Queensland-based team Paul Wyatt and Scott Cross to allow hotel customers to set a limit for their food and drinks tab at selected venues – removing the need to hand over a credit card to make their payment – through their point-of-sale system.

SmartPhone Text Charges

All patrons need to do is located the venue within the app, open up a tab and set their credit limit. Once this has been completed and their card balance has been verified, a code is generated by the app which just needs to be shown to the bartender. It’s really as simple as that.
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Cyprus Ultimatum Threatens Banking System

March 21st, 2013

How soon things change. No sooner had Europe appeared to settle down, promising better conditions for a slowing Australian economy and lower costs of funding on international wholesale markets, when the chaos kicks off again.

Cyprus has dominated international headlines this week, after an unprecedented move to impose a one-off tax on savings worth up to 10%. Banks were closed as people rushed to withdraw money, and are to remain closed until next Tuesday.

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Postpone Your Holiday and Save Some Cash

December 7th, 2012

You have probably noticed the signs going up all over the place. You know the ones; they advertise the big holiday and year-end sales.

Retail stores and online sellers are putting their holiday marketing engine into full gear trying to get you to spend some money on their “bargain”. You might be tempted to “get it while it’s hot” but if you can actually wait until after the holiday shopping rush is over and get it “while it’s cool” so to speak, you might find that you will end up saving a lot more money in the long run.

There is a misconception that the best deals for shopping happen immediately before the holidays. It’s not untrue that there are some good bargains to be found before the holidays but the best ones happen afterwards, following Christmas, into January with some of the best savings not coming until early March. Read the rest of this entry »