Many Verizon Wireless customers have been infuriated after receiving notification from the telecom that their monthly bill for data will go up as much as $12 due to “rising operational costs.”
Of course, price increases are part of the telecom business shell game, but they typically heat the proverbial waters around the ol‘ lobster by marginal increments — such as the $1.35 “economic adjustment” fee increase applied by Verizon this month to its postpaid customers for “administrative cost” increases.
But consumers will definitely feel 12 bucks.
Verizon’s move follows a very similar price bump announced earlier this month by AT&T — single-line-of-service customers got a $6-a-month increase, while AT&T shared data customers saw a monthly surge of $12.
Verizon said its increase will take effect “no sooner” than August 2.
Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg raised the possibility of such a price bump during his company’s first-quarter earnings report, suggesting something simply had to be done to keep up with inflationary pressure. (He didn’t mention any adjustments to his own executive compensation, which exceeded $20 million last year.)
Blaming the current administration for inflation has been a go-to messaging point for far-right media outlets as they propagandize for the November midterm elections. And that agenda seems to be catching on, based on President Joe Biden’s currently low approval ratings. But increasingly, it appears that corporate greed might be a principal driver for the current upward price pressure we’re all experiencing.
A study by the Economic Policy Institute published in April found that more than half of the overall increase in consumer pricing can be attributed to initiatives intended to drive “fatter corporate profits.”