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Old 04-17-2008, 08:56 PM   #21
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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Are Americans unusually stupid???

Quote:
Originally posted by anitram
I have TD. In the past I've had two types of accounts. The student account I had did not have any fees of any sort. The regular account (which I have now) requires me to keep a $1000 balance for the purpose of withdrawing $ from the debit machine. Without the minimum balance, I'm allowed 5 transactions per month and after that there is some sort of fee, I can't remember if it's $5 or $7 for unlimited usage. I have never had less than that in my account so I've never had to pay a fee. But that fee had nothing to do with my chequeing account. Neither my roommate, nor my parents, nor my brother pay any kind of chequing fee either, so this is really surprising to me to hear.
I should point out that our checking accounts generally have no minimum balances and have always had unlimited transactions. I was shocked to see accounts with transaction limits and account fees.

I think the reason for my $12 a month figure is that that's what I priced for an account with unlimited transactions, which is what I'll probably need when I move to Canada later this year. I make a lot of transactions with my current bank account.
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Old 04-17-2008, 08:57 PM   #22
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Regarding gas prices-

Canada's gasoline taxes are 50-60 cents per gallon higher compared to the US.
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Old 04-17-2008, 08:58 PM   #23
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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Are Americans unusually stupid???

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Originally posted by melon

I think the reason for my $12 a month figure is that that's what I priced for an account with unlimited transactions, which is what I'll probably need when I move to Canada later this year. I make a lot of transactions with my current bank account.
I must make 50+ per month and I have NO FEE. I've honestly never even heard of a fee and so the only thing I can surmise if one exists is that I've always been over the minimum limit as have the people I know...but in that case the limit must be awfully low given the financial state of some of them.
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Old 04-17-2008, 09:04 PM   #24
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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Are Americans unusually stupid???

Quote:
Originally posted by melon


I should point out that our checking accounts generally have no minimum balances and have always had unlimited transactions. I was shocked to see accounts with transaction limits and account fees.

I think the reason for my $12 a month figure is that that's what I priced for an account with unlimited transactions, which is what I'll probably need when I move to Canada later this year. I make a lot of transactions with my current bank account.
I pay $10 per month banking fees, and while my transaction limits are high (I rarely carry cash, pay for almost everything with my debit card), they are limited.

As well, everyone I know pays in the range you're speaking of for fees, for various banks. In fact, my mom, a senior, was one of the ones who till just recently, had a special no-fee chequing account for seniors. She received a letter recently that they're doing away with the no fee for seniors thing, and they sent along a fee schedule for her perusal. Many banks used to also have no fee accounts for students, but my daughter and I shopped around at various banks last summer for an account for her, and all of them had fees for students.

You're also correct, our cell phone plans suck compared to yours, as well.
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Old 04-17-2008, 09:07 PM   #25
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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Are Americans unusually stupid???

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Originally posted by VintagePunk
Many banks used to also have no fee accounts for students, but my daughter and I shopped around at various banks last summer for an account for her, and all of them had fees for students.
It seems to me that the only time they're really giving you fee-free accounts for students is if you also have a student line of credit with them. I actually took out a LOC for $75K and then didn't charge a thing to it, but used my free account.
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Old 04-17-2008, 09:10 PM   #26
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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Are Americans unusually stupid???

Quote:
Originally posted by anitram
I must make 50+ per month and I have NO FEE. I've honestly never even heard of a fee and so the only thing I can surmise if one exists is that I've always been over the minimum limit as have the people I know...but in that case the limit must be awfully low given the financial state of some of them.
In case I'm being completely daft here, here's where I got the figures:

http://www.tdcanadatrust.com/account...e_chequing.jsp

At TD, the only free checking account I see here is for students and senior citizens over 60. Unlimited transactions start at $13 a month.

http://www.rbcroyalbank.com/RBC:SAf-...-accounts.html

At RBC, I see that there is an ability to waive the monthly fee for the unlimited transaction account ("RBC No Limit Banking"), but only if you have an RBC investment account, an RBC credit card, and an RBC mortgage (how "generous" of them). Otherwise, it's $12 a month.

http://www.scotiabank.com/cda/conten..._LIDen,00.html

At Scotiabank, it's pretty much just like TD. Unlimited transactions start at $10 a month.

http://www.cibc.ca/ca/chequing-savings/index.html

CIBC is the same. Unlimited starts at $13 a month.

http://www4.bmo.com/personal/0,4344,35649_36619,00.html

BMO is the same. Unlimited starts at $14 a month.

Please let me know if I'm somehow making an error in my research here, and I'll be glad to make a retraction here!
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Old 04-17-2008, 09:14 PM   #27
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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Are Americans unusually stupid???

Quote:
Originally posted by anitram


It seems to me that the only time they're really giving you fee-free accounts for students is if you also have a student line of credit with them. I actually took out a LOC for $75K and then didn't charge a thing to it, but used my free account.
I know that RBC had no fee student accounts as recently as 2000 without a LOC. I opened one with them at that point, because the credit union I normally bank with didn't process government student loans. Within a year or two, processing was no longer done at banks anyway, so I went back to my credit union.

As of last summer, student banking fees are considerably lower than they are for non-students, in the range of $3 to $5, but all banks charge students for normal chequing accounts, now.
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Old 04-17-2008, 09:16 PM   #28
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Yeah, but those are waived with a specified minimum balance, so they're technically not mandatory. I guess if you're under $1000 you're always SOL but then if you're over $3K you have no fees at all (and admittedly I fall in here and haven't really considered a monthly fee otherwise).
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Old 04-17-2008, 09:30 PM   #29
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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Are Americans unusually stupid???

Quote:
Originally posted by VintagePunk
In fact, my mom, a senior, was one of the ones who till just recently, had a special no-fee chequing account for seniors. She received a letter recently that they're doing away with the no fee for seniors thing, and they sent along a fee schedule for her perusal. Many banks used to also have no fee accounts for students, but my daughter and I shopped around at various banks last summer for an account for her, and all of them had fees for students.
How greedy of them, particularly since it is well known that the Big Five Canadian banks are all flush with cash, and have been using it to finance acquisitions of U.S. banks, as of late. TD has probably been the most aggressive of the bunch, in this respect.

CIBC is probably the only one on shaky ground, because they had too much exposure to subprime investments and have very little foreign investment. Even then, it's hard to feel sorry for them.
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Old 04-18-2008, 12:04 AM   #30
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Americans aren't stupid the media, the politicians and corporate CEOs think that we are. Americans can be patient and right now our patience is running out.
It's funny because I was discussing places that my son could get a job once he is finished with school and I told him that Canada would be a good idea (my son has dual citizenship Brit./ American).
Canada is rich with oil and water. One reason for NAFTA we want to steal Canada's water. Canada is our biggest trading company and they exported tons of gods to America before NAFTA. At least the products from Canada are safe and not made with slave labor like the Communist China goods.
Canadians have to have a great sense of humor since they live next door to a loud giant.
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Old 04-18-2008, 05:10 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally posted by financeguy


By comparison to whom? Russians put up with a lot more encroachments on personal liberty by comparison, as do Chinese. If we are going to argue that Americans are stupid, we would have to argue that Russians and Chinese are stupider.
On paper Americans have better guarantees of fundamental liberties like free speech and freedom of worship (or not) than most other countries (I am a bit pressed to think of one that has as celebrated a history on that front). As far as being stupider America has a mean IQ of 98 or so, but then I guess they could just blame that on the blacks (that was an ironic statement about 'The Bell Curve).
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Old 04-18-2008, 01:48 PM   #32
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Let's see we have tent cities popping up in Los Angles and all the American media can do is make an issues out of stupid stuff like flag pins. Does the media have low IQs or did they cheated their way through college? Oh wait the American media didn't get a degree because they went to modeling school.
Here is a video of a tent city in L.A. It's coming to your town too.
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Old 04-18-2008, 03:57 PM   #33
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i think this is what tends to happen more in the US than in other countries.

we have very little government funded media/news organizations. the major networks and the cable news networks are all in the business of ratings, not news. the vast difference in news quality between NPR and CNN and Jim Lehrer and Fox News is astonishing -- i've spent loads of time watching the much vaunted BBC, and i adore it, and it blows CNN out of the water, but it is actually not quite of the same quality as NPR/PBS. it's scope is broader than the American government-funded equivalents, but the quality is, imho, slightly higher.

if American news were about news and not about ratings, you'd see a massive voter shift at the polls. such as it is now, news becomes not about events but about the spin of events, or not the election but the sense of the horse race of the election, and not the message but how those who receive the message might perceive it. spin, shock, scandal, the sense that Obama and HRC are in some kind of boxing match -- all this heightens the sense of drama, raises the perceived stakes, and gives viewers a reason to tune in. and you get questions about flag pins.

also, the US is a massive country. there are probably more highly educated, latte-sipping elitists in the US than Canadians in all of Canada. but there are 300m total, and many people simply aren't given the same access to education and, more importantly, the tools to become more sophisticated. i'd argue that intelligence is one thing, and it's manifested in myriad different ways, and that is found in all groups and all places and has nothing to do with environment or to whom you were born. but sophistication is something that is hard to acquire without some money and motivation, and not everyone has that.

finally, it's impossible to compare 300m Americans to 30m Canadians, 60m Brits, 10m Swedes, or 25m Australians. you just can't have any meaningful comparisons.

that said, for all my frustrations, i'd be hard pressed to really want to live anywhere else.
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Old 04-18-2008, 07:20 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511
also, the US is a massive country. there are probably more highly educated, latte-sipping elitists in the US than Canadians in all of Canada. but there are 300m total, and many people simply aren't given the same access to education and, more importantly, the tools to become more sophisticated. i'd argue that intelligence is one thing, and it's manifested in myriad different ways, and that is found in all groups and all places and has nothing to do with environment or to whom you were born. but sophistication is something that is hard to acquire without some money and motivation, and not everyone has that.

finally, it's impossible to compare 300m Americans to 30m Canadians, 60m Brits, 10m Swedes, or 25m Australians. you just can't have any meaningful comparisons.

that said, for all my frustrations, i'd be hard pressed to really want to live anywhere else.
No country is perfect. I think that's something that everyone should remember. Having studied a lot of countries informally, I'd say that every nation has its irrational hot-button issue(s), asinine politicians, and, of course, the "idiots" who voted them in in the first place.

Having said that, I often wonder where I'd live if money was no object. Well, for one, I'd have to take tax and residency considerations into consideration to dictate how long I'd stay in one place during a year. But my mind is inclined to want to wander Europe for part of the year, and parts of South America for other parts of it too.

Nevertheless, the U.S. does have its advantages, particularly in terms of being a good environment for entrepreneurial types and overachievers, not to mention, overall, having a rather healthy appetite for freedom and fairness. Granted, both are obviously open to interpretation to many people, and I'm not entirely happy in this regard. But, again, no country is perfect.
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Old 04-21-2008, 10:44 PM   #35
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I don't know. This past week I met a guy from Ottawa who tried to get me to go back to his hotel room.

In front of my parents.

That's pretty stupid, so I guess it's not just limited to us Americans.
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Old 04-22-2008, 08:47 AM   #36
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Re: Are Americans unusually stupid???

Well, as a fellow American, are you ?
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Old 04-22-2008, 09:41 AM   #37
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don't call me stupid guy
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Old 04-22-2008, 11:43 AM   #38
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Re: Re: Are Americans unusually stupid???

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Originally posted by toscano
Well, as a fellow American, are you ?
No. I am really, awesomely smart.

I am so smart!
I am so smart!
S-M-R-T!

... I mean, S-M-A-R-T!

(thanks, Homer Simpson)
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Old 04-22-2008, 11:56 AM   #39
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Re: Re: Re: Are Americans unusually stupid???

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Originally posted by corianderstem


No. I am really, awesomely smart.

I am so smart!
I am so smart!
S-M-R-T!

... I mean, S-M-A-R-T!

(thanks, Homer Simpson)
sorry, meant to direct at the original poster, who may not be smart enough he/she is a fellow American.
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Old 04-22-2008, 12:54 PM   #40
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ohhhhhhhhhhh.

I knew that!

... because I'm so smart.
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