Banks have undergone major changes in the way they conduct business over the last several years. For 2014, you will most likely see even more changes, but for the most part, these should be beneficial to you. Rising fees will likely occur, but with this comes better interest rates for your savings and money market accounts.

Your bank has probably undergone some big changes over the last several years. The federal bailout funds that many U.S. banks experienced a few years ago led to some alterations in how business is conducted. There are likely going to be more changes coming up since banks are still adjusting to being self sufficient and profitable. These changes will probably be both good and bad. With Raymond James financial, you can minimize the bad things and get the most out of the good changes. Here’s a few things that you can expect to see in the year 2014.

For one, bank fees will probably go up. If your bank hasn’t already done so, overdraft fees, for example, are probably going to increase. Low checking account balances too will be heavily fined. Banks have seen an increase in the cost of doing business and this will almost definitely trickle down to the customers. This is definitely not a good thing for many people, but with profits down in other areas due to a struggling economy, it only makes sense that these banks will try and recoup funds in other areas. By charging a little bit more for things like low balances and overdraft costs, banks can begin to increase their revenue, if only slightly.

Right now, bank interest rates are pretty low across the board. The poor economy the last couple years has driven interest rates down in order to try and entice more people into taking out bank loans. This has worked, and bank rates have started to recover. If you are looking for a loan, the sooner you take it out the better off you will be since rates will probably continue to rise over the coming year. Interest rates on savings accounts are also at a pretty low rate right now. Saving money is tough during poor economic times and banks will only pay out the bare minimum in order to try and get people to place their money with them. As the economy improves, interest bearing accounts such as savings and money market accounts will begin to become more attractive to the average investor. CDs should become more lucrative, too.

Mostly, you should see your banking situation improve in 2014. Banks cannot conduct business and function without companies and individuals placing their money within them. In order to encourage people to save money with them, banks will likely come up with some creative ways to increase business. For example, some banks are giving away free gifts when you open up a checking account with them. This is good, but beware of gimmicks. A free gift is hardly ever free in theory because the costs of doing business is greater over time than the cost of the gift. Banks know this and calculate the cost-benefit ratio when coming up with these ideas. Still, you can gain a lot over the coming year by placing your money correctly. Go with the bank that gives you the most freedom, the lowest fees, and the biggest benefits.

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