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The bank can't charge you more than NIS 1.50 for an ordinary transaction, the Knesset decided yesterday by a massive majority ­­­- but it's just the first reading into law.

Also, relief won't come before October and the initiative could be derailed yet.

A bill capping bank fees passed its first of three readings into law yesterday, despite the government's initial opposition.

The bill, which is the brainchild of Knesset member Amnon Cohen of the Shas party, was approved 40 to 1, with one abstention.

Once the proposal passes into law,+ if it does, banks won't be able to charge more than NIS 1.50 for a list of commonly used services from tellers, manned call centers and automated machines.

Although the cabinet initially opposed the bill, minister without portfolio Meshulam Nahari (Shas) said yesterday that the government would support the proposal, after Cohen promised the bill would not be passed into law before October.

Cohen said that he had agreed to a request by Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer and Banks Supervisor Rony Hizkiyahu to delay the move for three months in order to study the repercussions of the last bank fee reform.

The bill seeks to cap fees for depositing and withdrawing cash, cashing and depositing checks, nd making transfers or deposits into other accounts. In addition, banks will be required to offer a fee package for NIS 18, or NIS 10 for senior citizens.