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American Express Bank, FSB

Category: Bank Deals, Savings Account Rates- fhuff- 10:34 am/ October 29, 2010

American Express Bank, FSB has a high yield savings account that earns 1.3% annual percentage yield (APY). The savings rate is current as of Oct. 29, 2010. Details of the savings account offer include:

  • No minimum balance required
  • No monthly fees
  • Insured by Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC)
  • Up to six withdrawals each month
  • Access account online or by phone anytime

You can make deposits and withdrawals by check or electronic transfer. You can deposit checks by mail. You can link up to three external accounts to an American Express Bank savings account. Interest on the savings account is compounded daily and credited monthly. The first interest payment to your savings account is made 30 days after it is opened. After that, interest is credited once a month. If funds are deposited electronically, it may take up to six business days for them to be available for withdrawal. You can name up to six payable-on-death beneficiaries for each savings account. You can apply for a high yield savings account online. Savings accounts cannot be opened in the name of a trust.

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Berkshire Bank

Category: Bank Deals, Checking Accounts, Local Bank Deals- fhuff- 11:31 am/ October 27, 2010

Open a free checking account at Berkshire Bank and you can earn up to $100 in bonuses. The deal is good through Oct. 31, 2010. You can complete up to four of the following tasks and receive $25 for each one:

  • Sign up for online statements
  • Set up and receive direct deposit
  • Pay a bill with online bill pay
  • Turn in your old debit card and replace it with a Berkshire Bank debit card
  • Refer a friend who opens a free checking account (up to two referrals)

You can open a Berkshire Bank checking account with as little as $10. Bring in your old checks and you receive a free box of checks for your new account. Another perk includes receiving a discount of 0.25% on consumer loans when you set up automatic payment from your Berkshire Bank checking account. (You must qualify for a loan to receive the discounted bank rate.) You can also receive $10 off the annual fee for opening a safe deposit box.

Berkshire Bank is based in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. The checking account offer is valid only for new checking customers at the bank’s New York branches and can be withdrawn at any time.

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Category: Bank Deals, CD Rates- fhuff- 10:59 am/ October 25, 2010

Members of AAA have access to certificates of deposit (CDs) with competitive rates above the national average. The CD rate for a 2-year term is a fixed 1.8% annual percentage yield (APY) as of Oct. 19, 2010. Other CD rates and terms include:

  • 0.75% APY for 3 months
  • 1.05% APY for 6 months
  • 1.15% APY for 9 months
  • 1.4% APY for 1 year
  • 1.55% APY for 18 months
  • 1.9% APY for 30 months
  • 2.05% APY for 3 years
  • 2.3% APY for 4 years
  • 2.8% APY for 5 years
  • 2.95% APY for 7 years
  • 3.05% APY for 10 years

Opening a CD does not require a minimum deposit. The CD rates are subject to change at any time, so verify current rates with AAA before opening an account. Account fees, such a penalty for early withdrawal, might reduce earnings. CD accounts are offered through Discover Bank.

You can access your account online. The interest payments can remain in the CD or be transferred to any other account you choose. You can also use electronic deposit to add funds to a maturing CD or a new one. CDs are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC).

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Northpoint Bank

Category: Bank Deals, CD Rates- fhuff- 8:39 am/ October 22, 2010

Northpointe Bank has 3-year certificate of deposit (CD) with an annual percentage yield (APY) of 2.1%. The CD rate is valid as of Oct. 1, 2010. Other details of the CD offer include:

  • Withdraw funds after 18 months without a penalty
  • $5,000 minimum deposit required to open account
  • You must open CD with funds not currently deposited at Northpointe Bank
  • Deposits insured by Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) up to $250,000
  • CD rate not valid with other offers
  • Automatically renewable upon maturity

Northpointe Bank has other CDs with terms ranging from 6 months to 5 years or more. Other CD rates include:

  • 1% APY for 6 to 11 months
  • 1.35% APY for 12 to 17 months
  • 1.55% APY for 18 to 23 months
  • 1.7% APY for 24 to 29 months
  • 2.4% for 48 to 59 months
  • 2.7% for 60 months

The bank also offers a high yield money market account with a 1.4% APY. The money market requires a minimum deposit of $100,000. Northpointe Bank is based in Grand Rapids, Michigan and is locally owned and operated. If you live outside of Michigan you can call the bank to find out rates for your state.

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More than half of bank customers pay nothing to maintain their accounts. A survey by the American Bankers Association (ABA) found that 53% of bank customers pay no monthly fees and 14% spend $3 or less for fees for services such as access to ATMs or checking account maintenance. The survey also found that 9% pay $4 to $6 a month, 5% pay $7 to $9, and 14% pay $10 or more.

“Bank customers today are getting one of the best deals around - checking and savings accounts for minimal or no cost. And these survey results show consumers are getting better than ever at managing their finances to keep service fees low,” according to Nessa Feddis, ABA vice president, senior federal counsel and retail banking expert.

Although many bank customers can find checking accounts without monthly maintenance fees, they are being hit in their pocket from other services. Overdraft fees at many banks have continued to rise, and some customers pay as much as $35 per overdraft. However, consumers can take more control over fees charged by banks by opting out of overdraft services or even switching accounts. Is it time to review your bank checking account to make sure you’re getting the best deal?

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