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Stock Strategist

Make Bank Fees Work for You

Consider investing in high-fee banks, but do your banking elsewhere.

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Every winter when I receive my first heating bill, my jaw drops open at the amount I owe. Then I make plans--only half-joking--to buy natural-gas futures or invest directly in energy stocks to hedge against a similar series of super-sized bills sure to come the following December.

Even though I never follow through on those tactics, at least I can console myself with the fact that heating is a necessity if you live in Chicago and hope to avoid a nasty case of frostbite. But what about high-priced expenses that can be avoided, such as bank-deposit fees? After all, most people seem to have a story about how they got nickeled-and-dimed by their bank one time or another. Are these fees really becoming that big of a deal, and if so, can investors profit from them?

Craig Woker does not own (actual or beneficial) shares in any of the securities mentioned above. Find out about Morningstar’s editorial policies.