Thought of the Day - I'm rich!

75802-494217-thumbnail.jpgI got a wonderful check in the mail today.  Cingular mailed me a refund check for an overpayment on my account. 

The total...$.01

 Now, according to a report I found published by IBM, the cost to clear a check is between 9 and 15 cents per paper check.  That's only the clearing cost.  There were also generation costs born by Cingular. 

So, what's the sense in sending me $.01?  I've certainly spent more of my own time than I value at $.01 on this topic.

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On a vaguely related note, I did an internship during my college years where one of my projects was helping a large retailer evaluate the merits of bringing check processing in-house vs. leaving it in the hands of banks.  By processing checks certain ways before sending them off to be cleared (kind of like presorting bulk mail for the post office) the company could save millions per year.

Walmart has been after doing this for years.  There have been numerous articles about how Walmart wants to get into the banking business lately.  Walmart offers up the "we want to process our own checks" as the reason they want a banking license.