Sunday, April 20, 2014
Top Entrepreneur News

Mon, 21 Apr 2014 01:00:00 -0500

A corporate nomad explains her discovery of ways to absorb the amazing places in her travels while still accomplishing her business goals.

Sun, 20 Apr 2014 02:00:00 -0500

A roundup of some of the Apple co-founder's thought-provoking words, collected from various interviews and speeches.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 23:30:00 -0500

Oakland A's second baseman Eric Sogard discusses how he manages his finances, so he can make smart future investments.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 05:00:00 -0500

Robin Chase says that to make positive change on a large scale, social entrepreneurs need to make sure they are first and foremost catering to the needs of their customer.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 04:30:00 -0500

A new generation of corporate buyers is seeking ways to evaluate enterprise technology in the same way that shoppers tap Yelp for insight about consumer products.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 04:00:00 -0500

Trying to pick the best option as you move through the startup paces? Gain insights from someone who's been through both types of programs.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 03:00:00 -0500

Adoption of better safeguards in the physical world will drive criminals to electronic theft, argues payments validation entrepreneur.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 02:18:00 -0500

You’ve probably seen that viral video claiming moms have the toughest job in the world. Now, men are getting their time in the limelight with a parody video by Bud Light.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 02:00:00 -0500

With consumers' attention span shrinking by the second, companies need to think quickly. One solution is micro-content.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 01:30:00 -0500

Increases in staffing at a growing company can pose a challenge when juggling the wide swings in client workload.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 01:29:00 -0500

Olle Lundberg, founder of Lundberg Design and the man behind Twitter's birdhouse-themed San Francisco headquarters, shares tips for improving office productivity and morale.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 01:23:00 -0500

Fast-food chains have been trying to one-up each other with wacky offerings like the Waffle Taco and Chicken Corsage. Here are some of the weirdest items on the menu.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 01:00:00 -0500

If you hit it right, antique toys can be a highly valued part of your investment portfolio.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 00:49:00 -0500

Mothers are some of the most engaged people on Facebook, so make sure your business has a Mother’s Day campaign ready.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 00:28:00 -0500

If you're not sure where to locate your business, these tips can help you decide whether to start at home or rent commercial space.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 00:14:00 -0500

Target's online subscription service launched in September with just 150 baby-care items. Now, it's increasing its product offering tenfold, offering everything from K-cups to dog food for regular delivery.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 00:00:00 -0500

Buckling down to accomplish heaps of tasks seems to have fallen out of fashion lately. But success demands massive amounts of this very stuff.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 23:30:00 -0500

Instead of being afraid to share information about your firm, embrace it as a new way to hire (and retain) social media-savvy job seekers.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 23:25:00 -0500

More Americans report they would rather forgo sex than a mobile phone, and almost 70 percent of Americans say they check their mobile phone even when it hasn't made any indication of a message arriving.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 22:30:00 -0500

Content marketing and social media expert Jayson DeMers talks about one of the big social trends to watch out for in 2014.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 22:13:00 -0500

A security hole allowed data thieves access to some customer card information but not names, addresses or PINs.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 22:00:00 -0500

Television interviews are a high-stakes game that can pay major dividends. With these strategies, you’ll be able to enhance your ability to get your message across.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 21:30:00 -0500

Pitching to investors can be a full-time job, but if you prepare yourself for meetings, it can save you precious time.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 21:00:00 -0500

Nonstop flights are great. Nonstop talking seatmates? Not so much. We turned to some experts for help.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 20:00:00 -0500

A snapshot of what works best in the current Facebook landscape and how quickly things can change.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 19:30:00 -0500

Professional coach and Entrepreneur.com contributor Lindsay Broder on what you need to keep in mind when managing a startup -- and a team -- through a rough patch.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 19:00:00 -0500

Sonja Rasula was tired of boring business conferences. So, she used her summer camp memories as a launch pad for CAMP, a new kind of networking event for adults.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 18:30:00 -0500

After her father's death, Jane Daume was inspired to become a franchisee for an in-home care business for seniors.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 17:31:00 -0500

In the wake of the recent Heartbleed SSL bug revelation, it's more crucial now than ever to update all of your online passwords. Here's how in one easy, neat and tidy infographic.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 17:00:00 -0500

A device called the MIDI Sprout, which transforms plant biorhythms into a sort of music, is sowing major seed funding on Kickstarter -- to the tune of over $27,000.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 03:36:00 -0500

The American food manufacturer has made an unprecedented sneaky, (anti)social media move to keep itself out of court.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 03:30:00 -0500

A recent court ruling finds companies aren't protected from suits by public figures if corporate ads feature them without prior consent.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 02:25:00 -0500

Facebook's latest feature allows you to see which of your friends are near your physical location in real time.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 02:20:00 -0500

Boston Pizza customers can now vote on whether the chain should begin selling a Pizza Cake, a gas-powered pizza cutter or a pizza air freshener.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 01:40:00 -0500

According to a new Pew study, if you're like a lot of Americans, you'd like to own something that gets you places faster, lets you time-travel or somehow prolongs your life.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 01:30:00 -0500

The White House has made April National Financial Capability Month.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 01:13:00 -0500

Follow these tips for determining a price that makes you a profit without gouging your customers.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 01:03:00 -0500

If you’re thinking of quitting Facebook, get in line.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 01:00:00 -0500

Before Americans start celebrating a drop in the number of uninsured, you first have to look behind the numbers.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 00:30:00 -0500

For nonprofits, fundraising isn't just about the 'ask.'

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 00:24:00 -0500

The tech giant's latest mobile operating system may boast a song recognition feature in a partnership with Shazam.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 23:05:00 -0500

The peer-to-peer lending site announced today that, with its acquisition of Springstone Financial, it would be expanding its reach in consumer finance.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 22:46:00 -0500

No, you're not mean. Just smart. Sometimes it's okay to ignore connection requests on the world's most popular career social networking platform. Here's when you probably should.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 22:45:00 -0500

Much-coveted shoes are being bartered and sold by high schoolers at sneaker conventions across the country at eye-opening prices, The New York Times reports.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 22:30:00 -0500

It is a delicate balance to keep your business on track while juggling the responsibility of caring for an aging relative.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 22:27:00 -0500

The burger chain is eyeing an aggressive expansion plan over the next decade.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 21:47:00 -0500

Customers expect better communication from brands than ever. Most businesses, though, are not keeping up.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 21:30:00 -0500

For a small startup, often passion can be more valuable than skills, as mindset can’t be taught but capabilities can.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 21:00:00 -0500

Three traits that social entrepreneurs and purpose-driven organizations need to thrive.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 20:48:00 -0500

Coolhaus founder Natasha Case went from selling ice cream sandwiches out of an old postal truck to self-made millionaire. Here's how.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 20:30:00 -0500

Prepare to meet the mammoth mechanical crab of your nerdiest undersea dreams.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 20:00:00 -0500

With its business-friendly features and implications for Google search, here's how you can supercharge your page on the network now.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 19:30:00 -0500

Often entrepreneurs try to cut corners to save costs. But doing so with your legal documents, may end up costing you more down the road.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 19:30:00 -0500

Business owners should always avoid making excuses, but business coach Lindsay Broder says this one can really annoy your staff.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 19:00:00 -0500

There is always a reason for deciding not to do something. Here's some advice on how to say no without feeling guilty about it.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 18:30:00 -0500

For small businesses, offering a standout product means understanding what the customer wants -- and delivering it.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 18:30:00 -0500

After years of self-employment, this franchisee wanted to get into business for himself but not by himself.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 18:00:00 -0500

Often entrepreneurs hire people that aren't top-notch, because they need to fill the position quickly. To avoid this problem, they need to plan ahead.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 17:00:00 -0500

Now is the best time to start creating a local strategy and to start building up your presence on search engine results pages.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 03:41:00 -0500

Fingers crossed for stylized brunch photos, artsy sunset shots and lots of selfies.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 03:30:00 -0500

Don't kid yourself. For most new firms launching outside Silicon Valley, developing a startup strategy is essential.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 03:00:00 -0500

Listening to and truly engaging with customers wherever and however they choose to engage is the new secret to organizational success.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 02:59:00 -0500

These three browser-based tools will change your life. Or at least streamline it a bit.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 02:30:00 -0500

Founding or working at a new business can be scary, but each experience can lead to improvements.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 02:00:00 -0500

Could student sleuths have finally uncovered the true identity the mystery man behind the world's most enigmatic currency? Or is this just another false alarm?

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 01:57:00 -0500

Hot on the heels of the drumstick corsage, KFC is bringing back the super-hyped Double Down.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 01:38:00 -0500

In a blog post, Microsoft chief Satya Nadella discusses the importance of developing a 'data culture,' where information is dynamically aggregated across every level of the company.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 01:21:00 -0500

Get your business started on the right foot by choosing workers who are a good fit for your cleaning business and training them properly.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 01:00:00 -0500

As the debate over net neutrality rages on, here's some basic information about how you might be affected.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 -0500

Harness the proper tools, do analysis and understand how effectively your organization’s marketing initiatives work together.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:00:00 -0500

After a grim February, restaurants once again ruled as the largest job creators in the franchise sector.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 23:40:00 -0500

The president is traveling to a community college in Pennsylvania later today where he will announce new initiatives aiming to bolster the U.S. labor force.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 23:30:00 -0500

Founders often reach a point when they need to hand over the reins to a more experienced person. Here are a few pieces of advice on how to make the transition process easier.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 22:38:00 -0500

Etsy Wholesale, which debuts in August, will enable makers to sell their creations directly to major retailers -- including Nordstrom and West Elm.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 22:15:00 -0500

Major manufacturers and wireless carriers have agreed to offer a free opt-in 'kill switch' for smartphones made after July 2015.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 21:50:00 -0500

Mt. Gox isn't rising from the ashes after all and its customers will likely never see the hundreds of thousands of bitcoins the shattered exchange lost.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 21:45:00 -0500

If your workstation doesn't fit you, you're in trouble. Here's a quick guide to setting up your workspace for optimal health and productivity.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 21:00:00 -0500

Partnering with the wrong corporation can spell disaster for a growing social enterprise. Here’s what to consider before getting wed to a new initiative.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 20:30:00 -0500

Faith and belief drive a lot of what we do. Yet, we are asked to leave our beliefs at the doorstep of our offices.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 20:11:00 -0500

Drones plus selfies equals dronies. Get used to it.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 20:00:00 -0500

The small stuff, like answering emails and tweaking your web site design, are important but shouldn't be at the top of your to-do list. Instead, your time would be better spent focusing on the fundamentals.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 19:30:00 -0500

Professional coach Lindsay Broder on how and why effective business managers need to lead -- and inspire -- by example.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 19:00:00 -0500

These simple yet powerful business principles will help you win relationships and earn repeat business.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 19:00:00 -0500

After stints as an advisor at big-name companies, the charismatic entrepreneur and investor is getting back into the startup scene.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 18:30:00 -0500

With a wealth of experience in corporate management, these Goddard School franchisees knew the right franchisor was key to success.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 18:30:00 -0500

For our series Ask the Expert, marketing guru Joanna Lord chats about why she decided to dive into marketing and what newbie entrepreneurs can do to create a memorable brand.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 04:11:00 -0500

The hot-tempered former NFL wide receiver wonders how 'easy’' the complicated cryptocurrency is. Don’t even get us started.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 04:00:00 -0500

Performance evaluations are critical. They can engage employees deeply to deliver their best effort to a company.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 03:30:00 -0500

While its hard out there for a female founder, I am not letting it stop me.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 03:14:00 -0500

The iPhone generation tries to figure out how a Walkman works in this viral video.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 02:35:00 -0500

The bad-boy founder of the Bitcoin Foundation and BitInstant is back at his mom and dad's place and he's in big trouble for allegedly funneling $1 million into shady Silk Road dealings.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 02:35:00 -0500

Investors have shown the most interest in dumping their dollars into real-estate deals since the SEC's historic lifting of the general solicitation ban.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 02:30:00 -0500

Whether you want to start a stand-alone business or add these services to your existing cleaning company, here are eight business ideas you might want to consider in the cleaning industry.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 01:00:00 -0500

Pluto Mail lets you 'unsend' messages, edit unopened ones and choose a shelf-life for all your email transactions.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 01:00:00 -0500

Focusing on the long term, keeping your feelings in check and rooting out negative influences can lead to success.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 00:52:00 -0500

Jobs in science and engineering got top marks from CareerCast in a study that looked at stress, income and room for advancement.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 00:50:00 -0500

A look at where online shopping is expected to grow the fastest in the next five years and which companies are leading the charge.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 00:44:00 -0500

This flight attendant could probably double as a standup comedian, with her spiced-up safety announcement garnering over 1.5 million views on YouTube.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 00:35:00 -0500

The tech company has a new patent application to apply Google Glass's camera feature to contact lenses.

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 00:30:00 -0500

At every stage you'll face expectations to conform to different corporate cultures. You must weigh them against your sense of ethics.

Sun, 20 Apr 2014 15:17:00 -0500

Sometimes it seems you can learn more about management from sitting at a bar than from reading a textbook.

Sun, 20 Apr 2014 14:13:00 -0500

At 10:06am Eastern time, the SpaceX Dragon successfully berthed with the International Space Station, marking the fourth time that one of the company's Dragon spacecraft has made the trip successfully.

Sun, 20 Apr 2014 13:41:00 -0500

Ten days ago, the federal government released a huge data set detailing how it spent $77 billion in Medicare funds in 2012 to over 880,000 health care providers. The release of this data is part of a new transparency effort by the government, which many of us applaud.

Sat, 19 Apr 2014 15:23:00 -0500

It's been an interesting month for mobile games, one that I believe clearly illustrates a split for the scene with the release of two high profile games, Blizzard's Hearthstone and Atari's RollerCoaster Tycoon 4. Hearthstone is a new game drawing from old concepts, but has seen great popularity in its recent PC release. RollerCoaster Tycoon is a storied franchise responsible for many great memories in gamers' childhoods and beyond.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 18:45:00 -0500

//An earlier version of this story stated that Xbox 360 won the previous round of console wars. That, of course, is incorrect since PS3 finished strong and, eventually, overtook Xbox 360.// For the last decade or so, the Playstation and XBox rivalry has riveted gaming enthusiasts. Together, both devices have powered sales in the gaming industry, accounting for more than sixty percent of the console games market that is worth an estimated $27 billion. In the previous round of this battle, XBox 360 started strong but was eventually overtaken by the PS3. This time around, Sony has already made a strong start:  PS4 sales outpace those of XBox One. Based on figures released by the respective companies, the PS4 has sold more than seven million devices, so far. In comparison, XBox One has sold five million devices. Four Reasons Why Sony Is Winning The Console War When Mark Cerny asked him about Sony’s winning formula at the Computer History Museum on stage last week, Shu Yoshida, Sony veteran and president of it's Worldwide Studios for Sony Computer Entertainment Inc, shied away from answering the question. “It would have been impolite,” he told me. During an interview session with me later, however, he outlined four reasons for Sony’s winning strategy against Microsoft. The first reason is price. At $399, the PS4 is a good hundred dollars cheaper than XBox One. The company is playing off the same strategy used by the Seattle-based giant when XBox 360 was priced lower against its rival. According to Yoshida, the second reason for PS4’s popularity is the console’s technical superiority against its competitor. Whether it is processor speed or the performance of its graphics card, the PS4 is either identical or outperforms Xbox One on most fronts. The end result of this is an immersive game experience, one that enables design and development of games for diverse audiences. “It (the Sony PS4) is better for people who care about (console) specifications,” says Yoshida. The Tokyo-based company's push to include more independent game developers on the PS4 platform has also contributed to its success, says Yoshida. Although it featured several blockbuster games, PS3 did not attract significant independent developers. This time around, the company is not taking any chances. Right before the PS4 launch in November, they invited journalists to preview select titles for the console. The titles were arranged in two rooms and featured games from indie developers such as Jonathan Blow, whose last game - Braid - was released on Xbox 360, and seasoned studios, such as Guerilla Games. Of course, this does not mean that the company has abandoned big studios. Indeed, as Yoshida pointed out during his talk with Cerny, “commercial realities” (or, the economics of the gaming market) are in favor of big studios. This is because game development costs are higher for such studios; as a result, Sony ropes in other, internal divisions, such as marketing and business,  to promote the games. “When we spend $50 million, it is a big bet,” he says. The final reason for the PS4’s success is Sony’s legacy as a pioneer in the gaming industry. The company reinvented the console gaming market by launching the original Playstation console.in 1994. It has also driven major developments in the industry, whether it is the introduction of new architectures or development of portable consoles to grapple with industry shift towards mobile. “People like what we are doing from the standpoint of our history,” says Yoshida. “So, they have confidence in our games."

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 16:05:00 -0500

A new study in the American Journal of Psychiatry finds what others had hinted at but not quite arrived at: That the effects of childhood bullying can last not only through adolescence and young adulthood, but also through middle age. Earlier studies had shown the negative psychological and social effects of bullying to be evident into a person’s 20s, but the new research tracked the psychological health and cognitive function of once-bullied kids till they were 50. And the effects of bullying – particularly of severe bullying – affected a person’s well-being in a great number of ways. All the more reason, the authors urge, to take bullying just as seriously as we would any other form of childhood abuse.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 14:31:00 -0500

The world’s automakers are showing off their sleek new 2015 models and concept cars at the New York International Auto Show, which opens to the public today. The most radical innovation in the car industry might not be obvious on the show floor, but instead in the showroom of a BMW dealership near you.

Fri, 18 Apr 2014 13:30:00 -0500

The following guest post is by Eric Schiffer, chairman and CEO of Patriarch Private Equity and CEO of Digitalmarketing.com. 

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 12:19:00 -0500

Bigger is sometimes better, but that is not usually the case with luxury hotels and resorts. Beyond a certain size they often lose their intimacy, their hands-on service touch and the magical feeling that they know and care about guests as individuals. In short, big resorts often lose the sensation of a true home away from home. But on the other hand, small properties often under deliver, lacking the amenities of a full service hotel that many travelers want, such as multiple restaurant options, a lavish spa and sporting facilities.

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 11:33:00 -0500

I’ve written extensively about the ways good grammar and command of the English language can make or break a business (or a career). But what about your ability to speak another language, in addition to English? Is it mandatory? More importantly, is it worth the investment, in terms of your company’s additional potential for revenue gain?

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Is Your Bank Stealing From You?
By David Najor :: Friday, August 22, 2008 :: 12573 Views :: Article Rating :: Business & Finance

California, USA - “Few would argue that the energetic entrepreneurs have transformed small business in metropolitan areas of Michigan, California, Illinois, Arizona, and Nevada,” says Rebecca Cohen of California’s Bank & Trust speaking of Chaldeans.  “They are hard-working, brilliant in business, and have a remarkable talent for negotiations.”

Although the accolades and praise rings true to many, Chaldean business owners still remind budding entrepreneurs to be mindful of banks when doing business. 

“Banks are like any other business.  Their inventory is currency.  They want to buy currency when it is inexpensive and sell or loan to you at a higher rate,” says Masood Bajou.  “Chaldeans in business or not, should always keep a close eye on their banks and the fees they charge.”

Increasingly, banks are finding ways to impose bigger and trickier fees on account holders.  Uncovering the creative ways banks assess fees and other hidden costs to their customers was no easy task.  Nonetheless, Chaldeans should be watchful over some of the sneakiest fees and quickly master ways you can avoid them...

ATM Overdraw
Many ATMs are allowing their customers to overdraw on their accounts. Request cash from your bank's ATM, and you will almost certainly receive it -- even if there is not enough money in your account to cover the withdrawal. Banks could easily program their ATMs to decline such transactions or to warn you that such a transaction will trigger a hefty overdraft fee, but that would mean a loss of extra fees for the banks.

Chaldean Self-defense: Check your balance before making the withdrawal if you are not certain there is enough money in your account.

Double ATM fees.
Last year, Bank of America increased its ATM fee for non-account holders from $2 to $3, and other banks are likely to follow suit. ATMs warn customers of this type of charge, but many ATM users do not realize that their own banks often charge an additional fee of between $1 and $2.50 for using an ATM that belongs to another bank chain. That means the total fee for an out-of-network ATM transaction can top $5.

Chaldean Self-defense: Use only your own bank's ATMs.

Check Overdraft Penalities
Clear the biggest checks first to maximize overdraft penalties. Most banks charge a fee of $30 to $40 each time an account holder bounces a check. (Any merchant who received your bad check might charge you a penalty as well.) In addition, many banks now follow a practice that often automatically increases the number of checks that their customers bounce. They do this by first deducting from your account the largest check amounts when processing a batch of your checks.

The banks claim they do this because large checks tend to be the most important, but consumer advocates contend that it is just a way to maximize fees. Bank of America, Citibank, HSBC, Wells Fargo and many other banks engage in the practice.

Example: Five checks you wrote reach your bank on a given day -- four checks for small items followed by a $1,400 mortgage payment. If there is only $1,300 in your account, only the final check -- the big mortgage payment -- should bounce. Instead, your bank processes the large mortgage payment first, which means that all five checks will bounce. Rather than a $30 or $40 overdraft fee and one upset check recipient, you now face $150 to $200 in overdraft fees and five perturbed check recipients.

Chaldean Self-defense: Avoid writing many checks or making several debit card purchases in a short period if you are not 100% certain that there will be enough money in your account to cover all of them.   Also, check with your bank to see if they have overdraft protection should you have both a savings and checking account. This is often a free service so be careful of banks that charge for this basic service.

Another hidden fee is getting a penalty for someone else's bounced check. A penalty when you bounce a check is one thing -- but many banks now charge a fee of $5 to $10 to the recipient of a bad check as well.

Chaldean Self-defense: Do not accept checks as payment unless you are confident that you can trust the payer.

Account Dormancy Fees
Some banks charge a fee of several dollars per month to keep an "inactive" or "dormant" account open. In Michigan, Charter One is notorious for this practice.  Banks have different criteria for what they consider a dormant account, so be sure to ask your bank about its rules.

Chaldean Self-defense: Close any unnecessary accounts.

Banks might charge you a fee of $5 or more if you close an account within six to 12 months of opening it. These fees are particularly common at bank branches located in college towns, because banks know that students often close accounts at the end of each semester or school year. Example: Here in California, KeyBank charges an early closure fee of $25 when "Express Checking" accounts are closed within 180 days of being opened.

Chaldean Self-defense: Ask about account closing fees before you open the account. Don't open an account at a bank that charges such a fee if you expect to leave the region or close the account for another reason anytime soon.

Gift Card Fees.
Banks sell gift cards like those offered by retailers. They can be used just as you would use a bank-issued debit or credit card. Unlike retailer gift cards, however, bank gift cards often carry account fees of as much as $2 or $3 per month. If the recipient does not spend the money quickly, a significant portion of it might gradually disappear.

Chaldean Self-defense: Give cash or a check -- or a retailer gift card -- rather than a bank gift card.

Teller and Phone Fees.
Some banks now charge $1 to $5 or more every time an account holder interacts with a teller or customer service representative in person or on the phone (or every time the account holder exceeds a preset monthly teller transaction limit). At some banks, this charge applies even when customers call the bank but interact only with the automated system. Customers are not told that they are being charged a fee at the time of the transaction, and they often are unaware of the rules.

Some banks even charge a fee for certain ATM services, such as requesting a "mini-statement" that summarizes recent transactions.

Chaldean Self-defense: Ask your bank if your account has a limit on the number of free teller visits or calls. If it does, do as much banking as possible through ATMs or on-line.

Also, ask to have any teller or phone fee waived when your call or visit is about a bank error, involves opening an account or is because the bank's ATM is out of service. You also may avoid these fees if you maintain a certain balance in some accounts.

PIN fees.
Some banks now charge a fee of 25 cents to $1.50 each time a customer uses a personal identification number (PIN) for a debit card transaction at a retailer. Debit card users typically can choose to either sign for purchases or type in their PINs.

Banks impose PIN fees to encourage customers to sign for purchases, because banks can charge retailers higher fees when they do. Trouble is, many Chaldean cardholders don't even know that PIN fees exist.

Chaldean Self-defense: Try to use credit cards rather than a debit card. If you do use a debit card, check whether your bank imposes a fee when you enter a PIN. Consider switching banks if it does.

HOW TO AVOID FEES

Many Chaldean bank customers learn that fees only after when charges appear on their account statements -- if they bother to read their statements at all.   By law banks are required to give new customers a "Truth in Savings Disclosure" statement detailing all of their fees and to notify customers in writing when policies change, but few read the fine print of bank literature. Chaldeans should routinely ask their bank for a copy of the fee-disclosure statement for their accounts.

Chaldeans will often say that their banks waive the fees because they are good customers, but this is less common now. At many banks, low-level employees no longer even have the right to waive fees, and the managers who do are increasingly unwilling to be lenient -- though it is still worth asking to have questionable fees waived when they appear on your statement.

Always keep a good record of what you have tied to a bank.  Banks know that if you have your mortgage being automatically withdrawn, direct deposit for professionals, or a business account with business dealings electronically tied, they know you are less likely to leave over the fee charges.  Some banks will take advantage of this situation and nickel and dime Chaldeans to death. 

Having all your information accessible makes it easy to call their bluff and transfer your accounts to another bank.  Competition is the only way to keep the banks offering great service at reasonable costs. 

Now that is advice you can take to the bank!