Thursday, March 8, 2012

Wells Fargo adds 100,000 health savings accounts

Wells Fargo announced Thursday that it added 100,000 health savings accounts last year, a record 38 percent increase and double the number added by Bank of America.

The bank now has 320,000 customers and 10,000 companies around the U.S. who use its accounts, which come through the bank's benefits services group.

Health savings accounts let employees set aside pre-tax dollars to be used for medical expenses. They earn interest, stay with an employee through job changes and roll over year-to-year. Employers will often make contributions to a worker's account.

The accounts have become more popular as health care costs continue to climb and businesses shift more of the responsibility for health care costs to employees.

Wells Fargo's announcement mirrors that of Bank of America, which said last month it had record health savings account growth in 2011. The Charlotte bank added 50,000 accounts, a 34 percent increase.