With exception of check services, Fed keeps fees static for 2021

The 2020 schedule of prices for payment services provided to depository institutions (priced services) will be maintained in 2021, the Federal Reserve said Tuesday, with one exception: the check services participation fee, which will see an average 2.7% hike.

In a release, the Fed said it had approved the fee schedules effective Jan. 4, 2021. Overall, the Fed said, it expects the approved fee schedule will recover 98.7% of the central bank’s priced services costs in the new year.

However, the check services participation fee is not expected by the Federal Reserve District Banks to fully recover actual and imputed expenses in 2021, including profit that would have been earned if a private-sector firm provided the services, the Fed said. But, the agency said, the banks do expect to “recover fully expenses over the long run.”

“This approach recognizes the uncertainties created by the COVID-19 pandemic and offers price stability for customers facing unique challenges in 2021,” the Fed said in its release.

The Fed said it estimates that the change to the check service participation fee will result in a 2.7% average price increase for customers of the services.

The Fed noted that fees will remain unchanged for the Reserve Banks’ FedACH Service, National Settlement Service, Fedwire Funds Service, Fedwire Securities Service, and FedLine Solutions.

The completed 2021 fee schedule for each of the priced services is available on the Federal Reserve Banks’ financial services website at FRBservices.org, the agency noted.

Federal Reserve Board approves fee schedule for Federal Reserve Bank priced services

Federal Register notice