I saw a C-Span interview on their weekend Book TV today (3/16/17), with Professor Lisa Servon. She pointed out that many of the highly regulated, and much-criticized, alternative banking services, offer a more transparent, more flexible, and more friendly service environment than the incumbent banking industry. She even argues that for those with low-incomes, and low-education, the alternative services are often less expensive. This happens because those with low-incomes and low education are often those who by mistake or by difficult circumstance, incur high fees at banks.
She points out that many who are bankless, previously made use of bank services, but decided to go with the alternatives. She suggested that in a free market environment, some of the alternatives might creatively destroy the incumbent banks.
Servon is clearly no libertarian, but much of what she says is thought-provoking.
Servon’s book is:
Servon, Lisa. The Unbanking of America: How the New Middle Class Survives. New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Co., 2017.