Is it a service for less educated, lower income customers that are terrified of the IRS?HRB does about 1/6th of the nation's individual tax returns, so it appeals to a wide audience.I'm convinced that if it weren't for the electronic filing/loan programs our business would be about 1/3 of its current volume. We get tons of people at the lower end of the financial spectrum that need their EIC money yesterday and HRB is the quickest way to get it.How does it draw in the higher income, higher fees customers?Through the Premium offices.Does it offer a service like Turbo Tax where you can do it yourself?There's an on-line feature and the Kiplinger tax programs for the do-it-yourself'ers.What they are doing to evolve, reinvent themselves to carry into the 21st Century.They are evolving into a one-stop financial supermarket with life insurance, financial planning, mortgages, and of course taxes. The tax business is the "front door" for the most part. Folks trust us.I am surprised that they haven't bought a bank yet to do the tax refund loans themselves and use the massive data base that the tax business generates to measure credit risks for credit cards.This tax season they are testing having ATMs at selected tax offices so that customers can get their tax refund loans ASAP. We do alot of business with folks who need the money now to avoid having their lights turned off.As long as Congress makes monkeying with the tax code an annual event, there will be a demand for HRB. Many folks can do it themselves but want that warm, fuzzy feeling of having HRB covering their backsides, especially the EIC crowd who could not afford to reimburse Uncle Sam if he decides that they weren't entitled to the EIC money in the first place.wolverine
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