An Occupy Wall Street Debit Card?

October 1, 2013, Written By John H. Oldshue

Prepaid debit cards–it seems just about every celebrity has tied their name to one. Justin Bieber. The Kardashians. Magic Johnson. Suze Orman. Even cartoon characters.

Now add the Occupy Wall Street folks.

It may be hard to believe but on September 17, the two-year anniversary of the Occupy Wall Street movement, some of the organizers formed an organization called the Occupy Money Cooperative. Their first product: a prepaid debit card.

The cooperative encourages members to take part in the revolution that will make banking fair, transparent and affordable. It has a goal to make Occupy a recognized financial services brand and to serve people that do not have bank accounts.

According to the cooperative’s website, the card offers low-cost, transparent, high quality financial services to the 99%. There is no upfront fee, but each ATM withdrawal will cost $1.95 and each balance inquiry will run 99 cents. If you deposit cash onto the card at specific locations, these locations will charge a fee that ranges anywhere from $3.74 to $4.95. However, direct deposits onto the card will be free. The card will be FDIC insured.

In order for this card to become a reality, the cooperative must raise nearly $1 million in funds. The estimated costs are $998,400, including $330,000 for staff and $450,000 for card issuance and working capital.

As of today after two weeks of efforts, the cooperative has donations of just $4,039.17.

Not all Occupy members are happy with this effort.

“Too much blood, sweat and tears have been going into Occupy to have that turned into a piece of plastic,” said Bill Dobbs, a longtime Occupy participant, in an interview with the New York Times. “This is a very odd fit, and for the project’s sake and Occupy’s sake, they ought to go on separate paths.”



The information contained within this article was accurate as of October 1, 2013. For up-to-date
information on any of the terms, cards or offers mentioned above, visit the issuer's website.