Most U.S. consumers, 83%, want to choose whether overdraft protection is included on their debit card purchases and ATM transactions so they can avoid potential overdraft fees, according to a recent survey sponsored by the Center for Responsible Lending. Eighty percent of survey respondents also said they want their financial institution to ask permission before enrolling them in an overdraft program. Consumers contend a transaction should be denied if there is a negative balance in the account, the survey says. Washington, D.C.-based market-research firm Marco International Inc. surveyed 1,005 adults by phone March 12 to 15. The Durham, N.C.-based Center for Responsible Learning will include the survey data with a letter it is sending Monday to the Federal Reserve Board, according to senior researcher Leslie Parrish. "We certainly hope the Fed and the banks support the opt-in measure," she says. The Office of Thrift Supervision, which regulates state and federally chartered savings-and-loan banks, and the National Credit Union Administration, which oversees federal and most state-chartered credit unions, also proposed the two overdraft regulations introduced last May (CardLine, 3/26).

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