CHICAGO (10/16/08)--A recent survey indicates that credit unions charge lower overdraft fees to its members compared with banks and other financial institutions. According to data gathered by Moebs Services, credit unions’ average overdraft fees are $24.24, compared with the $27.03 charged by banks. The national average is $25.67, according to the survey (BusinessWire Oct. 15). Debit card overdrafts are allowed by 57.9% of credit unions, compared with 47.8% of banks. ATM overdrafts are allowed by 40.5% of credit unions, compared with 33.5% of banks. The national average is 36.9%, the survey said. Moebs also said that the average price of overdrafts has increased by an average of 2.59% each year. “There is a clear trend that market forces are at work in establishing the fees that banks and credit unions charge in different parts of the country,” Moebs said. It also noted that upcoming regulatory changes by the Federal Reserve could increase competition between banks and credit unions. The survey also indicated that Miami, Washington, D.C., and Denver are the three highest-priced markets in the U.S. for overdraft fees. Financial institutions in Miami charge an average fee of $30.26 for overdraft coverage, compared with $28.15 in Washington, D.C., and $28.02 in Denver. Florida ranks as the highest-priced state for overdraft fees at $29.55 per check. The three lowest-priced cities are San Francisco, Sacramento and Los Angeles, with respective average charges of $22.39, $22.79 and $22.92. The lowest-priced states are California, Illinois and Wisconsin, the survey said.