In Australia and maybe elsewhere, fees is the new profit centre of many businesses and government.
For instance the largest telco here charges $15 & increasing for being even one second late in paying the bill. The actual cost to the company is a little interest (currently <2% PA) and printing the charge on the next bill which is sent by email. The real cost to the telco for the average customer who is 2 weeks late is 0.02/26 * $120 == $0.092 I didn’t include the bill cost as its like microcents. So that is 16,200% profit on the costs to the company for a late payment.
And then if you want a paper bill (mostly the poor since they do not have reliable internet/email) they charge $2.20 to $5.00 when the real cost is company postage rate (< $0.50) and printing/stuffing costs. We have companies that print, stuff envelopes & post for less than $0.90 per letter. So profit of over 250% for posting paper bills out. Only a few years ago it was all paper bills and NO additional cost.
The government for instance is now charging $50 for being one second late paying registration fees. Cost to the government is only the cost to add the fee to the bill when late so I class the cost to the government as ZERO.
Now its typically the rich lazy person (few) and the poor person (a lot of people) who is late paying big bills. And then federal ministers say that poor people don’t drive so government tax increases on petrol do not affect the poor. Governments are so out of touch with the real person.
Not to mention the 2-5% fee for using credit cards in many places. Mind you the public outcry was enough for government to actually do something and after the enquiry my telco went from charging 2% to charging 0.35% overnight. They did so to avoid heavy penalties.
The new economy of (late) fees & charges has arrived in Australia.