FNBO Direct 6% APY Savings Account Review: Opening Process, Features, and Transfer Schedule

I opened up a savings account at FNBO Direct originally for their high interest rate and no monthly fees. They are currently offering 0.85% APY as of January 2013, still competitive in this current rate environment. Here are my experiences so far as well as some first impressions of this online savings account:

Legitimacy and FDIC Insurance

FNBO Direct is a division of the First National Bank of Omaha, which is a member of the FDIC. If you call the First National Bank of Omaha, they will confirm this link and the website. For the techie folk, the nameservers and IP address range of FNBO.com and FNBODirect.com are the same. Combined with the fact that this account has been around for months, I see no need to worry about the legitimacy of this bank. Many banks choose to distance their online branches from their existing customers, as they are trying to gain new money and low-cost customers who are comfortable with things like electronic statements and online banking.

Opening Process Overview

The opening process went very smoothly. The CashEdge-based application is similar to that of HSBC Direct, but unlike with HSBC there is nothing to wait for in the mail. Nothing to send in either; No paper needed at all!

The application does include an identity verification test based on information from your credit reports. This is identical to what Washington Mutual does for its online savings account. If you have troubles with this, I recommend checking your credit reports for errors. However, a hard credit pull is not performed so it won’t affect your credit.

You can fund via wire transfer, online transfer, or by mailing a check. Here was my timeline:

  • Day 1:Apply online, pass identity verification. Receive e-mail that application was approved. I chose to do an online transfer. Trial verification deposits were sent to funding bank.
  • Day 2:Trial deposits received, and verified (free 57 cents!). FNBO Direct initiates funding transfer.
  • Day 3: I receive my new account number via e-mail, and enroll for online account access. Initial deposit hasn’t showed up, but should go in on Monday (see below). I can add link additional accounts (max of 3) and initiate other transfers.

Account Features, Transfers and Usability

Features
Overall, your basic Capital One 360 clone – $1 to open, no monthly fee, no minimum balances. Otherwise, it’s pretty barebones. No checks. No ATM rebates. You can request an ATM card, which I did, but since it costs $2.50 for each cash withdrawal, I never plan on using it. Here is their complete fee schedule.

Of course, we all know the best feature is the 6% APY interest rate ;)

Transfers
Again this is the familiar CashEdge interface behind the online fund transfers of banks like Bank of America, Presidential Bank, and HSBC Direct. All transfers are free, and the transfer limits are very generous. The transfer schedule appears to be identical to that of HSBC Direct, and takes three business days. (Worst case: If you initiate on Thursday, money is taken out on Friday, but deposit won’t show up at receiving bank until Tuesday.) I know many people dislike these slow transfers, so you should be aware. Here is a screenshot of the schedule:

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Note that your initial deposit will not be available for withdrawal for six business days, probably for security reasons.

Usability
The interface is very simple and utilitarian. I like it. There are only three tabs – View Accounts, Account Services, and Transfer Funds. (Click for a full screenshot of the interface.)

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More Information

Customer Service: 877-370-3707, open 24/7.
I’ve called customer service a couple of times, and they do answer and are helpful. Hold times may last a few minutes, but it’s probably due to the recent rush of applicants.

Number of external bank account links allowed: 3

ABA Routing Number: 104000016
I asked them if I could set up third-party transfers like paying my credit card bill with the routing and account numbers, and they said that would be fine. Hopefully it stays that way…

Download formats available: I see no options at all for this. No MS Money, Quicken, or even .csv options.

Interest compounding frequency: Interest is calculated daily and is compounded and credited monthly. Remember, how often interest is compounded really matters very little, especially if you are comparing APYs.

Source: The official website for this online savings account is http://www.fnbodirect.com

Comments

  1. Mike H says:

    This is a little off topic but did you see the rates on this weeks 28 day treasury bills? They took a nose dive (way below my tax adjusted minimum), I wonder if it had something to do with us rate chasers planning to move our money there after HSBC’s promotion ran out. I suspect it to increase back to April levels next week now that everyone’s probably scrambling to put their money in FNBO instead. Does anyone agree with this assessment? I feel like I saw that coming, lets see if my prediction is correct.

  2. Mike – Unless you actually participated in the Treasury Bill auction process, you really have no effect on the rate. The amount of institutional money dwarfs the money from individual investors in T-Bills.

    That’s just how T-Bills work, they are sensitive to short-term interest rate fluctuations. It works both ways – sometimes it much higher than savings accounts, and sometimes it’s much lower. If you track the daily market rates of T-Bill you may be able to predict auction results a bit better, but overall it’s very hard to pre-determine the results.

  3. good review. I just opened mine this week too and the entire process was smooth like yours. no paper / snail mail = A plus. if I’m opening an online account, I really don’t want to deal with snail mail.

    I was hoping transfer wouldn’t be using hsbc-like cashedge schedule, but the minute I saw the application process my heart sank. I wonder how many other banks uses these third party back-end for their online divisions.

  4. Looks like most banks are using Cashedge or something similar, there’s not really any way around waiting the 3 business days. Just always do your transfers on a Monday or Tuesday so you don’t lose the weekend interest.

    The only way I can think of to eliminate the 3 day wait is to sign up with Washington Mutual for their free outgoing domestic wire transfers. But that approach requires that the receiving bank doesn’t charge a fee for incoming wires (not sure if FNBO charges fees for that or not) and you have to physically go to the WaMu branch while they’re open to initiate the wire. The WaMu branch near my house closes by 6 and the earliest I can get there after work is 5:55, and I’m guessing they’re not going to want to start a wire transfer at that hour…

  5. gallelo says:

    Can I open this account in the name of my child? I heard that interest earned by minor can be up to $2000 tax free. Is that true?

  6. What does the interest rate revert to after the promotion period? How does it compare to other online banks?

  7. To gallelo:

    The first $850 of a child’s ncome escapes tax in 2006. The next $850 is taxed at the child’s rate. Anything over $1700 is taxed at the parent’s rate until they are 18. Congress extended the kiddie tax from 14 to 18 in 2006.

  8. I haven’t had a chance to check out all the information yet, but does it say what the interest rate will be after 9/28?

  9. Before the hike to 6%, it was at 5.25% which was pretty competitive. I would guess that it may revert back, however who knows what the interest rate environment in 5 months will be like. Either way, unless guaranteed otherwise all liquid savings accounts can change the rate at any time.

    Basically, the days to avoid initiating a transfer are Wednesday and Thursday. Even if you initiate on Fri-Sun, you won’t lose more than 2 days of interest. I don’t see these transfer delays as a huge deal, but others certainly do so I wanted to point it out. It does put a slight crimp on things if you are transferring a large amount of money.

  10. Can the funding source for FNBO be another online direct savings account, i.e. HSBC, so I could just move my money directly from HSBC to FNBO?

  11. Yes, you can fund with any account that allows transfers using routing number and account number. I’m pretty sure HSBC Direct allows such transfers.

  12. OT a little: About the 3 day delay for transfers, I just noticed my Citibank account has a next day transfer option. It has lower limits, only $2,500 per day, and must be done before 3 pm eastern time. Wondering if that is a different system then Cashedge or what is going on there.

  13. Do they offer/provide paper statements?

  14. Just a note to consider – I opened FNBO, and you can only access through Internet Explorer, no Firefox. My login would’t work right, so I called and they told me that. No message on the site about IE only. Also my AmTrust seems to be IE only too.
    Abe

  15. Thanks for the review! Just opened mine and it went very smoothly.

  16. Cashedge has a “Premium” transfer option that some banks take advantage of.

    I used Firefox 2.0.0.3 (Windows) the entire time and I applied/logged in just fine. Must be just for certain versions.

    I don’t think paper statements are available.

  17. Thanks for the information! I’ve got a bunch of money I need to keep parked for a while and this is going to work out great!

  18. Abe – I’m running 1.5 of Firefox, and I had trouble initially starting the application (I would get the “you have timed out” page right from the start), but after I started things with IE, I could restart, and after everything was done, I’ve had no problem with logging on to the account itself.

  19. Anne Marie says:

    Good to know you opened an account here. I got an email saying my transfer from Amboy had been processed, but still have not beeen able to access my account online. The email had an account number but when I go to the fnbo sites, including the link on your website, I get invalid certificate messages and can’t click on links. How did you enroll for online access? What is the http of the site where you logged on to your account? I am on day five now. Spoke to a rep Friday and he said I would get a password in about 3 more days, but from reading the posts this might be a Firefox or Safari thing. I’ve learned my lesson about transferring money before having online access.

  20. I also use Firefox 2.0.0.3 (Windows) but does not work for me. Got application time out error during application. I had to use IE to apply.

  21. Thanks for the update about firefox. I used firefox and also got the same error so I decided to err on the side of caution and not sign up with them. I thought if they can’t maintain their website well, how safe is my money and will I be able to access it? But if its just a firefox thing, I guess its okay.

  22. We also opened an account with FNBO Direct this weekend and found the process to be totally smooth. Very nice that everything can be done online. We also did the application for the Schwab 4.25% checking account, but that requires a paper application, so the process is a bit slower.

  23. I used Firefox (version 2.0.0.3) with no problem, both for opening and accessing my account.

  24. Removed says:

    removed upon request

  25. Jonathan Says above: “Trial verification deposits were sent to funding bank.”
    You can save a couple of days and skip the verification deposits if you are willing to give your ID and password for your funding bank. I just applied this morning and FNBO indicated my initial deposit (up to $250,000 should be in my FNBO account within two (2) business days of now.

  26. CalDood says:

    FYI, First National is the same bank that is backing the World of Warcraft VISA credit cards.

  27. Jonathan,

    How are you allocating your cash in your savings accounts now? You recently posted that you switched everything over to WaMu, but did you keep your Emigrant and other high yield accounts open with some cash in them? I’m currently switched over to WaMu because of Emigrant’s 3rd party fiasco.

  28. Sign up did not go smoothly for me. I was using the latest Firefox on Mac.

    1. First tried the automatic bank account verification option with my Presidential account. Immediately said I had to use the deposit verification method and that it would take up to a few days.

    2. A few days later, still no deposits. Returned to the FNBO site, clicked on “Return to my Application” and typed in the necessary info. It again confirmed that I had been accepted, but said the attempts to deposit into my account failed. It instructed me to mail a check to their Omaha PO Box.

    Not bitter or anything, just thought I should post this in case anyone else has been sitting around waiting for days for their two small deposits…

  29. Johnnova says:

    Can someone confirm: Is there a Quicken download option for statements?

  30. Charlie says:

    Forgive the naivety (spelling) but if i choose to deposit 10k in the FNBO account at 6% APY – what would be my first month’s interest earned? Is it $584?

  31. Johnnova: Quicken downloads are NOT supported on FNBODirect.

  32. I also opened an %6.00 APY account w/ FNBO. I didn’t like a few things w/ the opening including the 3 days of non-interest that transfers see. I thought interest would be acruing while it sat in the pulled from source account/ pending availibity state. I guess I am just used to the AM Trust Direct policies (Highly recommended @ 5.36% APY). Anyway found the linked account section a bit problematic. To me when you enroll all your info noted on the enrollment form (selections, amounts, enrollment account status, etc) should be noted on the account once established. I’m sure it will all work out but here is how mine is going down:

    Day 1) Enroll, (sign up)/link Account for transfer to fund account
    Day 2) Aproval of enrollment account # provided
    Day 3) Funds pulled from funding account ( AmTrust) but not seen in FNBO. Contacted FNBO and bitched about one account going from 50K to 1K but no visual proof of 49K pending in FNBO. CSR told me it was due to intial enrollment. future deposits will show but WILLNOT EARN INTEREST intill transfer clears (3-4 days).

    Additionally I have found that the account verification has been problematic… when enrolling a series of questions are asked… lets say 3 of 5 have to be answered… for me the outlying 2 (which I did not pick and therfore had no answers of) were the security questions asked when I tried to sign on. Imagine having to verify question/answers which you passed over during the selection process. It gets you wondering what the deal is.

    Overall I am pleased because I think I’m finally in and linked to the accounts I want. I like the real time verification that was availibile for one of the accounts (provide bank username/password), but I seriously dislike the idea of knowing cash was withdrawn from a linked account but not seen (or even worse not getting interest) in the new account.

    Customer service is 24/7 but as soon as the APY is introductory rate is over I’m back at Am Trust (but rates at that point in time will dictate where the liquid cash will sit.)

    I see this short term move a wash or at most +$100 taxable or so for the 4+ months FNBO offers 6.00APY. Honestly however, Am Trust seems like a REAL good idea for anyone that wants consistant, hassle free, comon sence banking with way above average rate of return.

  33. gallelo says:

    To MC:

    Thank you for the tax info! I guess I can’t open this FNBO account in my child’s name since that usually is not a generic type of saving account.

  34. I despise CashEdge transfers…it really should be illegal for these banks to subject deposits to a non-interest holding period. The money doesn’t just disappear. And with the constantly rolling through of funds, CashEdge’s daily deposits on-hand probably exceed a lot of big banks, no? Somebody is making money off our money. I’m sticking with Eloan even though their interface is a bit flimsy. Transfers post the next day…in and out. I learned my lesson with HSBC the hard way and will never do business with them or anybody else using a CashEdge-like system again. I’M THE LENDER! They’re not doing me a favor, I’M DOING THEM A FAVOR! ;)

  35. I used Firefox 2.0.0.3 (Windows) the entire time and I applied/logged in just fine.

    The ‘Timed out’ message is just a minor inconvenience. Tell it OK, or whatever it wants, I don’t remember, and you can complete the entire process, as well as online banking, with Firefox.

    Jack

  36. Charlie: To calculate the interest for one month, multiply your balance by 5.84% and divide by 12. $10,000 x 0.0584 = $48.67. The APY of 6% includes compound interest, that’s why the actual multiplier for one month is 5.84%. That’s annual, so you have to divide by 12 months in a year to get the monthly interest amount.

  37. I’m kinda’ on the fence about this myself. I like the KISS principle (LOL) and don’t really want *another* account, but 6% is descent when I look at it this way……..

    If you could increase anything by 20%, that’s a good thing, right? Well, vs. Emigrant, the interest rate would increase by 20%.

    PLUS…….even when it goes back down it’ll supposedly be 5.25% (IIRC..maybe someone can link for sure?)

    But I still have to leave $10K in Emigrant ‘cuz I use their credit card & need to in order to get their 1.4% rebate on their mastercard.

    And Emigrant’s transfers are FAST! 1 day in most cases. I don’t know what this “CashEdge” stuff is all about, but it sounds a little nerve-racking. (????)

    ****P.S. The other thing I’d thought about, but don’t know if Emigrant would even listen……..would be to ask them if they’d UP their %?? Sometimes asking is all things like this take. I just went over the $50K threshold & that’s valuable to ME, but maybe they’d just laugh at me???

    ~Red

  38. if it only takes 3-4 days for a transfer to clear thats not bad. onc ethe transfer is done can I take that money out instantly? does it start earning interest right away?

    when transferring money to ING it usually takes me 3-4 days, than I don’t earn interest on that money when it gets too ING till a week after the transfer (and I cant take out that money either)

    kinda lame…

  39. Yes, you can access the funds immediately after they clear. If you do a CashEdge transfer into ING the funds will be available after it clears, they won’t put a hold on it on the ING end.

    I assume the 3 float is how CashEdge makes their money. The transfers are never “free”, someone has to be paying for them in some shape or form.

  40. I believe I read something in the HSBC terms that supposedly nobody earns interest on money during the hold period. But I’ll eat my hat if nobody is making any money on the hold period money in any way whatsoever.

    Also, with the FNBO terms, I read something I really did not like at all and a big factor in my not now opening an account with them. I clearly says that unless you can “PROVE” any breach of your account was due to internal failures on their part, then the assumption will be any breach of your account is due to your own failure (to safeguard info, etc.). Yeah, right! Forget that. I don’t care what the odds are, or what their chances of prevailing with that in court would be (low, I think); it’s just not worth the trouble.

  41. Has anyone been able to hook up fnbodirect to yodlee? For those of you who are users maybe if you submit a service request (new link at top of page when logged in), they will make it a priority. Login process seems identical to fnbo main site other than URL so should be a quick add for yodlee.

  42. Now, I’m curious as to why anyone would want to use any other services OTHER THAN what the banks themselves provide???

    I mean, independent firms may be better, but I’d rather avoid the liability. Just let them do their own thing (Cash Edge or whatever they call it) and that way if you ever find yourself in a court room you can point the finger at THEM all day instead of answering questions about some third party you hired.

    P.S. ******ALSO ———–> While researching more on the web about opening this FNBO 6% account, I’m noticing some people say thta FNBO actually **DOES** do a HARD PULL on your credit.

    Can anybody verify or deny for sure???

  43. I first bcame aware of FNBO on Monday morning(5/7/07) and applied then. My funding deposit (from HSBC Direct) was posted and available today(5/10/07).

  44. Anne Marie says:

    After another day on phone with FNBO it appears that Amboy doesn’t allow EFT’s out of my account, even though the EFT deposits went through OK. Will have to call Amboy tomorrow, is that the case some banks don’t allow transfers out? Now FNBO won’t allow me to add another external account like BofA online, they are insisting I mail them a check. Think I will give up on FNBO. Think the browser issue is most likely Mac versions of Firefox and Safari, perhaps they have fixed it by now, they were aware of it a few days ago.

  45. Jonathan says:

    I emailed a online banking rep, and this is what they said:

    “Thank you for contacting FNBO Direct. Please be advised, we will complete a soft check to the credit bureau to identify the applicant”

  46. Anyone have any advice on the most time-efficient way to get money from Emigrant Direct to Bank of America and then to FNBO Direct? What are the best days to initiate the transfers? Thanks.

  47. donevan says:

    I would like to take advantage of the high interest rates of online savings, but I worry about something happening that will make me lose money! I can’t afford the risk!

    Anybody know how safe it really is?

  48. It is as safe as a regular bank. FDIC insured and all that jazz. If you are really concerned you could go with like ING or WAMU…more well known ones.

  49. On a post above I wrote that my initial deposit showed up on the web page as available within four days of applying for my account. This is true, but now six days later it shows up as not available–not a very helpful practice. I assumed the original post was correct and set up a payment already.

  50. On a post above I wrote that my initial deposit showed up on the web page as available within four days of applying for my account. This is true, but now six days later it shows up as not available–not a very helpful practice. I trusted the original web page and already set up payment to a credit card. Luckily, I was just able to cancel the payment.

  51. Welp………..I bit the bullet.

    Put the app thru & just waiting for the confirmation deposits to show up. I wanted to plunk the large amount from Emigrant, but I entered my regular bank first & it doesn’t let you enter another bank account right now……(not ’til after the mini-deposits are done)…….so I guess I have to wait.

    I haven’t ever done MM to MM before. I saw somebody else posted about this too, but I’ll throw it out there again anyway………

    Do MM companies use typical ABA routing & account # transfers?? I never had to set it up aside from Emigrant ‘cuz Emigrant only asks for my BANK’S aba/acct…….but I don’t want to have to transfer funds to my bank account & then hop over to FNBO, so I’m hopin’ the ET from Emigrant to FNBO will be simple & self explanatory once it’s go-time.

    ??? TIA ~ Red

  52. My experience with Eloan to FNBO Direct:

    Initiated push from Eloan at 8:00 am PDT on 5/14, funds are in FNBO as of 7:30 am PDT on 5/15. Very happy with the transfer speed from Eloan. Did the same thing on the same time/day with a pull from FNBO Direct from WaMu savings, no activity yet as of 3:30 PDT on either account.

  53. Dear Red,
    I do not believe FNBO or Emigrant are Money Market accounts. Other postings may help with the terminology. If I am right MM’s are mutual funds with special rules and not banks. They have no routing numbers, but are associated with banks that will not reveal their routing numbers.
    At any rate FNBOdirect, HSBCdirect and EmigrantDirect are not MM’s but are divisions of banks and do have and allow use of routing numbers.
    I used my HSBCdirect routing number and funded my FNBOdirect account (no confirmation deposits involved) in two days (interest being earned but six day hold).

  54. Dear Red,
    Or better yet call FNBO customer service at 1-877-370-3707. They were quite helpful when I have called (very short telephone hold time).

  55. Thanks!

    Ya, to update…….I confirmed the two mini-deposits today so things seem to be going smoothly. I would assume that tomorrow I’ll have the e-mail to set up my account & then be able to set up my Emigrant account from there.

    And, actually, I think it’ll be kinda’ nice to have 2 high-yield accounts like this so that I can keep the majority of liquid cash in whoever’s willing to pony up the highest %!!!

    :^)

  56. I just wanted to note that I have removed the comments supplied by an employee at FNBO Direct at his request. I was also notified directly by an executive from FNBO which wanted to clarify that the interest rate after 9/28 has NOT been decided yet, although they do plan to make it competitive.

  57. As an update………(and for us Emigrant customers)

    I’m still waiting for the first transfer from my regular bank to show up. I was gonna wait ’til Monday to set up Emigrant, but then I thought about it & decided to get the account at least set up tonight.

    Well, despite my having all the info at hand & entering it all correctly……..it appears that FNBO & Emigrant don’t play nicely as it would not let the account verify “automatically”. I had to resort to the “trial deposit” thing again for Emigrant.

    Hopefully, by Monday it’ll be set up & ready to go! Wish me luck

    :^o

  58. Anne Marie says:

    Be careful, I set up my FNBO account using Amboy, the two transfer verifications went fine then when I tried to fund my FNBO account it wouldn’t go through. Spent hours trying to deal with this, after having already spent time setting the account up initially with the browser problems. Also, had the same thing happen trying to fund a Washington Mutual account with Amboy funds. Ended up having to close and reopen that account. When an initial funding deposit fails it becomes total chaos. Apparently, some banks just won’t play with or release money to certain other banks, one FNBO tech said there were many banks he had seen this issue with including BofA. Almost gave up, but resorted to mailing a check to FNBO to fund account, been waiting a week for that to go through, they got it Monday and yesterday it still showed pending. Think safest thing is to fund using a checking account.

  59. Hmmmmm………I’m not familiar with “Amboy” but I’ll assume that it’s just another protocol for transfers.

    I figure, if their OWN system can’t get it done……….(FNBO’s and Emigrant’s)………then I don’t need it.

    I’m expecting to see my initial deposit by tomorrow. (that will be the 3rd day SINCE my account being ‘opened’).

    I’m also expecting to see the “trial deposits” in the Emigrant tomorrow too, so I can get that set up. I want to initiate my large transfer by Monday/Tuesday at the latest.

    :^)

  60. Account opening process – does anyone know how a credit report freeze would/could affect the opening process ?

  61. Can’t help ya’ there, but they do seem to answer the phone rather quickly, so I’d call.

    I called this morning & asked why my original bank account (the one I created the original transfer from) didn’t show up as a viable ‘transfer’ account. The gal told me that sometimes the initial transfer doesn’t automatically qualify that institution as a ‘transfer’ account, and to just go ahead & do the trial deposit thing. (Too bad they don’t transfer dollars instead of cents….I’d be rich….LOL)

    Anyway……..this morning (as I hoped), my initial transfer showed up *and* my Emigrant account rec’d the trial deposits so I confirmed & it, too, is now linked up.

    NOW ——————> Should I start my deposit this morning, or should I wait ’til tonight or Monday to initiate my larger transfer????? (In order to not lose interest during the 3 biz-day gap)

  62. To FYI anybody
    In the past few days I went to a credit card, using FNBO routing no. and my account no., I was able to pay my credit card bill. You can only make any sort of a withdrawal six times a month, so best to save this for the big payments.

  63. I have a question here. I am trying to link my HSBC online savings to my new FNBO online savings (as is everyone else), and HSBC says I can’t wire funds directly out of savings to another bank, that I must transfer the money to my checking account first, and THEN it can be wired out. Is this true? That would mean several more days of lost interest, since the time it would sit in checking would mean a loss of interest.

    Can FNBO “pull” money directly from the HSBC savings? What is the easiest way to accomplish this?

  64. I live in the Albany, NY area and while I was recently reading the various money Blogs out there I came across a post about http://www.rateedge.com which is the online only high yeild savings division of a local credit union. The rate is 5.5%. As I sifted through the FAQ’s I noticed that they mentioned once you are accepted for an account the inital transfer of funds to the account could be made by credit card. I almost crapped myself since I’m currently getting accepted to a Chase Visa with 0% APR on purchases and BT. I planned on rolling all my chase cards limits to this new one and BT-ing to Citi even with the $75fee. I would of course then roll that into my FNBO or AmTrust account. But now it seems I can roll it directly into this new 5.5% account from “Rate Edge”. I IM’ed the CSR team this morning and they confirmed this initial funding can be made as a PAYMENT on a CC. If this is really all legit it looks like both time and money are being saved here. Accounts in the CU are insured up to 100K. The only downfalls I’ve seen are unfortunatly you cannot fund via AmEx or Discover (AmEx has a 15month 0% offer going on). They have a fee structure for withdrawls above 2 per month (you get 6 total) and there is no bill pay option. Also you need to live, have family, do business or work in the greater Albany, NY area. I guess my overall question is …. has anyone ever heard of direct fund addition to an account via a credit card payment? This looks like a sweet deal for me.

  65. To Bob: On your FNBO web page you can link it to HSBC online savings (you need HSBC routing #). You can then initiate withdrawals or deposits on the FNBO page.

    To Eric: I have several times used a Chase 0% offer. Soon after the card account opens they have always sent me one or two blank checks(good up to my credit limit) I could deposit or cash anywhere (including directly into FNBO) and get the 0% rate.

  66. I just went through the entire creation process without trouble. Here’s what I did to fix Firefox. Click on tools, options, advanced, and click CLEAR NOW under the cache option. Works perfectly now.

    -Wilks

  67. Red- please see the earlier post on this board regarding Emigrant’s past treatment of 3rd party-transfers: http://www.mymoneyblog.com/arc.....sfers.html
    It may explain why you were having issues. They don’t block 3rd party transfers IN (such as the trial deposits), but unless they changed their mind (again), they may not allow the transfer out to any account other than one of the verified checking accounts you have on file with them.

  68. Mike………

    Thanks for the ‘heads up’. I contacted FNBO to see how my transfer was going & the gal told me that while they were having troubles w/ Emigrant’s “MONEY MARKET” accounts, that the savings accounts were typically ‘ok’.

    She advised me that she can’t really *see* what’s going on w/ the transfer as that’s Cash Edge’s business (she was impressed that I knew Cash Edge handled the transfers…….LOL) but that if I didn’t see the funds moving as of tomorrow, to call them back & let them know.

    (Fingers crossed) =^)

  69. Sure enough………the bastards ‘rejected’ my transfer! Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!!

    }=^[

    Just for that, I’m gonna strip it down even further than I was going to. I was gonna give Emigrant a little of the plunder, but now they are getting the BARE MINIMUM for the credit card perks.

    What a flippin’ hose job.

    FWIW, the rejection showed a code “R20″ and referred to a bunch of BS mentioning nothing about safety, just a bunch of legaleeze leaving me with a loathing for the institution that is…………THE SNOW JOB!

    Oh well, live & learn. 5.05 is better than nothing, so I’ll just transfer to my bank, then over to FNBO.

  70. I have a HSBC Direct account and want to open a FNBO account and have FNBO pull from my HSBC Direct account. Do I go thru the account open process with FNBO and provide my HSBC account number, routing number and dollar amount or do I go to HSBC Direct and add FNBO account info once the account has been established and then have HSBC push to FNBO.

  71. jennifer says:

    Can you explain how you are paying your credit cards with third party transfers?
    I just tranferred my money from HSBC to FNBO…application and transfer went well!

  72. Red- If it makes you feel better you can call up Emigrant and complain, and they’ll promise you a letter confirming the policy change. Of course, I had my transfer rejected in February and am still waiting on this letter. Just count yourself lucky. It may have cost you a couple days lost interest, but others have missed cd rates, credit card payment, and ira contributions because of this. In my opinion, if they are willing to change this policy and not tell you, what prevents them from changing the minimum balance requirements for their cash-back card and not telling you?

    Ted- I did it both ways and didn’t notice any difference in transaction times. I like the added flexibility, but since FNBO is limited to three banks, you could argue that setting it up on only the HSBC side would allow you to free up a spot if that’s important to you.

    Jennifer- I haven’t used FNBO in this manner yet, but unless they “pull an Emigrant”, it should just be as simple as logging in to your credit card account and providing them with FNBO’s ABA and your account number. Some credit card co’s like Citi require 7-10 days to set this up, so don’t wait til the last minute.

  73. Mike—–

    Excellent points!!!

    LOL at the “pull an Emigrant” comment…………ROTFLMAO!!! That was great!

    Will definitely be keeping a close eye on the credit card statements from now on!!!!!

    ;^)

  74. Update…………

    Haven’t called Emigrant yet, but do plan to & just give ‘em a piece of my mind…………….especially since I stuck w/ them THROUGH the HSBC 6% offer.

    But that’ll teach me next time. Just take all these folks for all they’re worth. Rate chase, screw ‘em, dink ‘em, boink ‘em……….whatever. If for one second I think they’re there for ME…….I need to remember……..THEY AREN’T DOING THIS ‘CUZ THEY’RE NICE FOLKS!

    Anyway, money left my Emigrant account today & is scheduled to arrive in my checking account tomorrow. Kinda’ weird when the money shows gone from one account, but not in another & you know it’s in a 3rd party’s hands………a.k.a. The Twilight Zone!!!

    (c=

  75. Dunno how my name turned into “Mike”.

    Maybe “Emigrant’s” after me on this board too…………..LOL!!!

  76. Well, now I swear they’re all in kahootz!!!!!

    FNBO’s website ain’t workin’ well this morning. I first noticed that their like java script (or whatever it is) ain’t working on the home page. (circular arrow advert for the 6% offer)

    Then, when you try to log on, when you get to the password, it fails & says to try back soon. (Aaarrrggh)

    Just as soon as Emigrant gets the money over to my bank & I’m ready to transfer hop, skip & jump back over to FNBO for its final destination………..kabloooooeeee…………no workeee!!!

    Murphy’s Law in effect!!!! =^)

  77. Red- When you call Emigrant, see if you can get an update on when the infamous letter outlining the 3rd party transfer policy change will be sent, and let us know on the main post regarding the issue (link). I was promised one as early as March and the last mention on that post was for sometime in May, which is rapidly coming to pass. I’ll be shocked if any of us ever receive such a letter, but I’m mainly curious how long they will continue to lie about it to their customers, and that board is a great history of it.

  78. Hmmmm……….posted a thread an hour ago but still not showing. Gonna try w/ different content.

    First ————> Finally got money transferred from Emigreedy to my bank hop/skip/jump over to FNBO. Now that that’s done, I wanna hook up ED and FNBO………..BUT………it appears ED won’t accept them as a link???

    ED wants a voided check from anybody you attach to them & I don’t have any checks from FNBO. Also………even if I get those ‘quasi’ checks in the mail from FNBO, they won’t accept those either. It has to be a dedicated personal checking account.

    What flippin’ bungholes!! What if I wanted to deposit tons of money in there??? They wanna make it difficult??

    (rolls eyes)

  79. Red, I seem to be having the same problem getting AmTrust Direct to accept a hook up with FNBO. On the bright side, I was able to link my AmTrust to FNBO and I have done one transaction pushing funds into FNBO and it only took one day. It just looks like I won’t be able to initiate anything from my FNBO back, but if I can pull money from the AmTrust I should be covered between those banks…

    Really, in this day and age of electronic funding, there should be no reason for some of the hurdles and hoops they make you jump through.

  80. Setting up an account with FNBO. Seems to be lots of questions and e-mails. Wondering if it can be done in 1 day?

    What is a calendar month ?
    30/31 days or May, June etc ??

  81. On the 16th I received an e-mail from FNBO saying my account would be fully functional wihtin 3 days. I still can’t use it. They tell me they are having a programming problem adding the FNBO accounts to the transfer screen. Which means, I can’t move money in. It is starting to make me worry…..

  82. Sounds like FNBO can be a hassle, would anyone recomend AmTrust Direct or is the 6% really worth it?

  83. It actually doesn’t appear to be FNBO any more or less than it is everybody else.

    Emigreedy
    CashEdge (though I can’t really fault them myself)
    and others

    I can’t fault my credit union. They’ve been dead-reliable through this whole process. They’re just doing whatever they’re told like a good bank should.

    Emigrant is the one that pisses me off right now. If *I* order a pull based on (enter name of regulation here) “regulations” that make it THUS and SO that I am who I say I am at FNBO (can they all agree on a banking standard?), then when I commence a transfer, it should go as commanded.

    Heck, I’m guessing that “CashEdge” is even required (if even to the smallest degree) to act as some sort of *escrow* party involved in the process to make sure that everybody is who they say they are in the deal so even if “regulations” don’t hold water, you’d think that CE would (???)

    Anyway……….I’ll just jump thru the hoops they want to get what *I* want and smile while taking their money. I also will NOT be swayed in the least, by my worrying about any inconvenience in rate-chasing in the future. If somebody offers me more money………..voila……..I’m gone & off to the races! Money talks & bull$#!t walks!!!!! (IMHO)

    =^)

  84. Case & Terry-

    I have both n AMTrust and a FNBO account. First I’ll say I have both linked in both accounts and I have not had any issues initiating transfers OUT of AmTrust and INTO FNBO from FNBO. Both accounts have their pros and cons I believe I commented on some of these in previous coments (see above).

    Acouple of things about AMTrust that I’ve noticed… custoer service is not always totally clar on their policies. I mean they know the basics like 6 wthdrawls out but they (some CSR) don’t know details such as only3 of the 6 can be initiated by a 3rd party. FNBO would be a 3rd party if you initiated a pull from AMTrust via FNBO’s website. Not a big deal they send a nastygram via postal mail but since these details are NOWHERE to be found within your personal account FAQ’s or the AMTrust Direct website FAQ’s I’m sure if a fee was acessed it would get waived. (I’ll comment that both banks CSR’s are very helpfull and friendly). Another issue with AmTrust is that there is a mininum $50 withdrall/transfer out. This a problem sometimes with Account verification from other institutions. Prosper.com for example deposited $0.53 into my AmTrust and pulled $0.39, obvioulsly the $0.39 is below the $50.00. I have not yet had any nastygram or other communication regarding this. Again this is not mentioned on the website FAQ’s but IS CLEARLY STATED in the membership agreement when you open an account.

    Overall I’m still liking AmTrust better than FNBO, I think alot of that is due to money transfered in earning interest while it’s still being confirmed and cleared (this money earns interest but is not available to withdrawl for about 4-5 days). AmTrust also has a cleaner, more professional website and they seem to communicate problems to their customer base with accuracy and on a timely basis.

    I’m a rate pig so I’ll case the rate but I like the idea of having all these accounts open and linked. See my note about rateedge.com, these guys let you fund your account with a payment on a credit card… sounds like a good way to get a 0% APY purchases/BT credit card and move your entire limit into the account for NO FEES while earning reward points.

  85. Eric, I’m wondering if my problem getting confirmation deposits from FNBO to AmTrust is because of the 50 dollar deposit minimum? Or maybe, I used a wrong routing number? What routing number did you use?

  86. Terry, the $50 is money LEAVING AmTrust not money ENTERING. The AmTrust routing # is 267091221, This should be initially called a “checking” account (according to the original paperwork (via US mail) I received with my account number).

  87. Greeeeeeeeeat……….

    2nd day in a row that FNBO’s website is fubarred!!!

    8^P

  88. “Terry, the $50 is money LEAVING AmTrust not money ENTERING. The AmTrust routing # is 267091221, This should be initially called a ?checking? account (according to the original paperwork (via US mail) I received with my account number).”

    Thanks Eric…I will double check and see if I used that routing number and “checking account”.

  89. I am new to this blog, so pardon me if I am repeating something. I’ve been very happy with Countrywide Bank’s bank-to-bank tranfer policy and ability to have the beneficiary be a Living Trust. If I make a request to have my money leave my Countrywide account by 4pm Pacific, it will be in my Washington Mutual account the next day. Same for getting money out. No three day nonsense like at HSBC and all the rest. I also found that only CWB allowed me to list my Living Trust as beneficiary. It has been several months since looking into this. At the time, only CWB allowed this. I also used the free external transfer at Wamu (with free person checking account) to move my money to CWB. Using a wire TRX avoids having that money count toward my allowable monthly limit.

  90. OK, took me a little bit to figure it out, but………

    Apparently “fnbodirect.com” url is sketchy. Occasionally it’ll work right but mostly it won’t.

    “www.fnbodirect.com” acts as if it’s a totally different url and loads properly every time. Dunno what the deal is (different IP’s??) but anyway…………if you’re having trouble just be sure you’re using www in the url.

    LOL

  91. I’m experiencing long delays with the FBNO account, as well. Glad, at least, it isn’t just me. I have never had any problem with my ING account, and all the transfers are quick and reliable. While the interest is 4.5%, I am wondering if the FBNO is worth the hassle and long delays for the added interest.

  92. I just wanted to thank Eric for his help in giving me the correct precedure for linking FNBO to AmTrust. Using “checking” and the routing number 267091221 was just the right combo and it went through smoothly!
    Thanks again Eric for your help. It is much appreciated!
    Terry

  93. Glad to be of help, for the most part my online bank set-ups have gone smooth but the fine print does need to be read and frequent calls do need to be made to the CSR’s. I am only envisioning my next experience… bring on http://www.rateedge.com … are they really going to let me fund my new account by charging $24,000 on my VISA (0%APR) for the opening process? We’ll see (let’s hope). Bring on the reward points!

  94. Eric & Terry…I noticed that you both have AmTrust Direct accounts. For what it’s worth, and I don’t know how much credence should be given to this, but AmTrust is rated only 2 stars on the Safe&Sound SM star rating, which is below Industry Average. FNBO and Eloan are ated 4 stars.
    Does anyone know how important these ratings are?
    As far as putting money into a savings account, I am tring to decide between Eloan and FNBO. Eloan seems to be a little more hassle-free.

  95. John, not sure how Eric feels about the 2 star rating, but with the FDIC insurance and other banking safeguards, I’m not too worried. I don’t have a ton of money in there either, since I moved it to FNBO.

  96. Yes John I noticed that on bankrate.com before I dropped a rather large amount into the account, but like Terry mentioned FDIC insurance levels the playing field (IMO). Plus I liked the fact that AmTrust was a division of Ohio Savings Bank… a bank with brick and morter branches in several different states. As a mattter of fact Ohio Savings recently changed their name to AmTrust. Overall I also like their polocies and the fact that the interest rate has been stable at 5.36% for about a year, not varying and not introductory. Also like the free checking account they offer. Since I have opened my FNBO account all AmTrust is holding is $1 but when the intoductory period is over I’ll move my cash back to AmTrust or my previously mentioned “Rateedge” account.

  97. FYI. My first interest credit appeared today, dated yesterday. I made my first deposit on 5/4, so it may be that FNBO pays out on the last day of the month. More likely it’s the last business day of the month, since they advertise the 6% promotional rate being good until 9/28.

    John- I have an ELoan and a FNBO account. I didn’t experience any hassles signing up with either one. Both were apparently paying 5.25APY prior to this promotion, so their regular rates might be similar after September, but it’s hard to ignore the difference now. Neither offer Quicken or Money downloads, if that’s important to you. FNBO allows you to link 3 external accounts, while ELoan only allows 1 and has limits to how often you can change it. ELoan requires a $5000 initial deposit and says they will close your account if under $500 for 90 days, while FNBO does not. In ELoan’s favor, their transfers are faster, so you don’t lose 2 or more days of interest.

  98. hey guys,

    just curious as to whether or not you can see how much interest youve earned on a daily basis on the fnbo website.

    so far all ive been able to locate is last months total interest.

    i really dont want to drop too much money into the account and find out the last day of the month that i got hosed on the interest.

    thanks in advance.

  99. FreshEgg says:

    Seem to be caught in a loop trying to fund an FNBO account. Went through the whole deposit verification process and was just told this morning that we had to do all over again. The customer rep indicated something about a 6 day hold on deposits, which I can understand but what the hell has that got to to do with FUNDING the account ?? I get the impression staff are pulling answers out of their asses.

    I have wasted 2 weeks in this process. So, contrary to other experiences here, NOT RECOMMENDED.

  100. Thanks Mike, I finally did sign on with FBNO…no complications…email said I was accepted and I am awaiting my initial small deposits. Will let people know my status as it goes on.

  101. Guys FNBO credits interest on the last day of the month. If that day falls on a weekend it would be the Friday before the last day of the month.

    Jeff- FNBO componds daily and credits monthly, I’m sure if you pulled your cash mid month at the end of the month you’d still see a positive balance because they would post on the money you had in the account for that portion of time. You will not be able to see interest daily.

    Freshegg- not sure where you’re running into problems but for the most part the enrollment is pretty smooth, i believe many of us outlined our personal experiences above. If FNBO doesn’t work try AmTrust.

    Good luck.

  102. Just found this blog today and after reading all the pro’s and con’s I have decided to go ahead with the FNBO Direct 6% interest savings account. My account will not be a a frog strangler by any strech. My current haze is around the actual steps to take in FNBO Direct to affect a transfer from my credit union checking account. I followed the hand held step by step process to have the $1 deposit transferred to FNBO, that now appears on both ends to have worked successfully. Now I’m a week later and the Fund Transfer steps are not exactly intuitive ( to me). Anyone done this a few times and could give me a litlle coaching ?
    Thanks for this neighborly service,
    Robin

  103. Robbin, if you have already gone through the account verification step linking your CU and FNBO innitiating a transfer between them should be a breeze. The only thing you need to decide is at which insitution you want to initiate from. Since you probably linked your CU to FNBO (you registered a routing/account # for your CU with FNBO) then it is easiest to go into your FNBO account in in the transfer section you will have that CU as an option for funding your account. Select it and initiate a “pull” from your CU to the newly created FNBO. One note, you may see the funds removed from the CU but NOT seen in FNBO right away. This is most certainly due to Automated Clearing House (ACH) processes which I believe is what most online financial institutions used to move cash around. you might not see your funds available for as long as 5-7 days. I think I commented more on this in an entry above outlining my FNBO opening experience. any deeper questions contact customer service they seem to be helpfull. Remember if you want to initiate transfers OUT (push) of your CU from your CU’s website you need to set up FNBO’s routing/and account # on that side of things.

  104. It’s good, I’ll open it

  105. Eric,
    Thank you for the helpful response. This blog has been most effective in showing a newby like me the ins and outs of this rate chasing game. As I stated earlier my investments are quite modest but I have recognized the value of having money work for me in other financial endeavors. Being a very recent addition to the retiree ranks, I now must seek to gain where ever possible. The greatest fear is that I will fall victim to the numerous scams lying about so this why I looked for information from independent sources such this site. Any suggestions anyone might have on how to validate the many choices offered. Not that I seek to have dozens of accounts to have to keep track of, but I would like to learn to ferret out the bad guys so as to be able to warn many friends in my situation.
    Thanks again for your help and the input from all other participants,
    Robin

  106. Hello, all. I noticed today that FNBO is no longer listed on Bankrate.com.
    Does anyone know why??? Just a little concerned.

  107. Ran into my 1st problem funding the FNBO account. I received the small deposits, entered them in the application, and the message from FNBO said “new account accepted”. But it will not let me fund the new account. Emailed them and will telephone tomorrow..will keep you posted in case other people run into the same problem.

  108. Anybody having trouble getting money out of fnbo?

    I have multiple accounts with fnbo and hsbc, and having a lot of trouble transferring money from fnbo accounts to hsbc accounts, or to washington mutual savings account. I keep getting R03 failure code, complaining identity does not match. But if I initiate transfer from hsbc or capitalOne (with completely different first name) to fnbo, then the transfer is successful. I started suspecting something wrong with fnbo side. I called fnbo CSR many time and none can not give me any resolution to this problem. I’m getting to a point where I have to experiment to see which accounts be able to transfer with each other. I’m getting increasingly frustrated with being unable to get money out of fnbo. Anyone has similar troubles with fnbo?

  109. Oooooooooooh……..ya……………sorry. Forgot that one little detail. FNBO is a “one-way” financial institution.

    The money goes in……………but never, ever, evvaaarrrr comes out!

    =^)

  110. David Newman says:

    Here’s a problem I’ve run into with FNBO. I’ve filled out the application form at least a dozen times over the past month & when I click save or next after agreeing to their terms, I get “application error,please try again later”. I’ve tried every setting you can think of,including turning my internet security basically off. I’ve done this on 3 different computers with 2 different browsers,nothing works. Any hints or tips out there? It’s not like I’m new at this. I pay all my bills & do most of my banking online.

  111. I think I read through all the responses, but I didn’t get an answer. Is it possible to fund FNBO directly from my ING savings? Or, will that get denied?

  112. I think my FNBO account is now running smoothly. I had to redo my personal savings account within my FNBO account in order to transfer funds in and out. It does seem to take a long time (3 to 4 days ) before the $ show up. I’m used to ING where the $ usually show up within 1 to 2 days. However, if you’re not going to be transferring often and intend to just let the $ sit there, FNBO seems to bgood considering the 6% interest rate.
    JJ…in order to transfer directly from ING you have to input the ING account details to FNBO account and then they will do a small transfer into the ING account to determine if it’s working properly. I have not tried it so I don’t know anything further. At the speed (or I should say lack of it) you may be able to transfer faster from your own savings account.

  113. How difficult is it to close the account or to transfer the money into a personal checkign account or another type of account that’s not FNBO?

    Thanks in advance…

  114. I have an acct at Amtrust Direct & just opened one at FNBO & another at Countrywide Bank. Was a bit ticked off to see FNBO’s 3-day hold after money was deducted from Amtrust before it was even credited at FNBO. Someone is making money on this pointless delay, and it isn’t me. But, I don’t plan to transfer money very often between accounts.
    I also have a Treasury Direct account linked to the Amtrust account, and transfers between these two accounts are instantaneous. Immediately after the Treasury puts money into Amtrust, it is available to me. Seems to me any bank operating under the Federal Reserve system should operate the same way. I wonder if checks mailed to FNBO for deposits have the same 3-day hold after they are withdrawn from the bank the check is drawn on, I rather doubt it.
    I always set up my accounts as “payable-on-death” to get around probate restrictions. FNBO told them they offer no beneficiary accounts, this is a big negative for me. After setting up the FNBO account, they did a test-deposit with my Amtrust Account for the initial funding. Then when I set up the same Amtrust account to be linked to the FNBO account, FNBO did another test-deposit, why I don’t know. This was the same account which successfully transferred money for the opening funding.
    I first contacted FNBO online on 6/7 and by 6/13 my first deposit had been made & the 3-day hold has passed. It would have been quicker to fill out a downloaded form, attach a check, and mail it to Omaha!
    After that experience I went to a local branch of Countrywide, which it turns out was not really a banking branch. The CSR filled out the forms, gave me an account number & a detailed receipt, provided a FedEx overnight envelope for me at no charge, and I sent my first deposit (for a CD) into a FedEx pickup box in the office. It’ll be interesting to see when the account actually takes effect & when the funds are withdrawn from the bank the check was drawn on. Even though I drove across town, this was less of a hassle than the FNBO online experience was. 6% can’t be beat, though.

  115. I have a transfer-money-from-bank-to-bank related question.
    I am currently a student, unemployed, and not planing on working for the next year or two. I have about 10K in my saving account with HSBC, and want to transfer the money to FINBO since FINBO is offering a 6%APY. My question is, if I transfer >10K at once, will my account be tracked down by IRS; and if I don’t file tax return next year (since I won’t be working) and not reporting the interest I make, what are the possible problems I would be facing from IRS? (I’ve heard different stories from people, but they were never clear and certain with their answers.) Thanks!

  116. —– As far as I know, banks have to report transactions >= $10,000 to someone, this has to do with prevention of money laundering. Some banks I have dealt with report transactions substantially

  117. [Somehow my reply got truncated, this is a second try at posting]
    —– As far as I know, banks have to report transactions >= $10,000 to someone, this has to do with prevention of money laundering. Some banks I have dealt with report transactions substantially

  118. [one more try, don't know what's wrong]
    less than $10,000 just to be on the safe side, so splitting your deposits may not prevent a report.
    —- If you are not required to file a federal tax return for a given year due to insufficient income, what you deposit in a bank, or earn in interest, shouldn’t otherwise matter. Some localities require you to file tax forms with them annually whether or not you owe anything, and in order to do that, you must also file federal forms. Personally I would file tax returns even if I owed nothing.
    —– IRS offers a wide variety of free tax form help now, I have used the free Turbo Tax option for 2 years running & have been very pleased with it. Many states offer free online filing.

  119. Well, it worked. Something about this blog doesn’t like the mathematical symbol for “less than” or

  120. Posting a comment with the ‘less than’ or ‘greater than’ symbols may be confused by the blog software for html. Sorry!

  121. Josephine says:

    I just received an email from FNBO

    ——————————————————————-

    FNBO Direct
    Account ending in XXXX
    ONLINE SAVINGS

    Because security of your account is important to us, we want you to be aware of one of the steps we take to maintain security: We may temporarily restrict all deposits to and transfers from your FNBO Direct account if we determine a security risk exists and we may refuse to complete any transfer based on the existence of a security risk. Please see the “Note about Linked Accounts” and the “Important Note about Security for Deposits and Transfers” in the updated Disclosures for your account here. Corresponding changes are contained in Sections 7 and 12 of the Online Services Agreement and Section 6 of the Deposit Agreement, all found in the Terms and Conditions here.

    ——————————————————————

    Does any one got it too? What do you think of this?

  122. Josephine,

    Let me translate into plain english so we can all better understand it………

    “Since we’ve rec’d such an influx of money over the last few weeks, we are plumb FULL of MUCHO DINERO (the new english in So Cal for “sh!tloads of money). And as such, we would like to advise you that if you’re using us to do anything other than plant your money for months and months (read that- years and years) to come……..we are letting you know now that we reserve the right to put the brakes on any of it so that we can continue to hold MUCHO DINERO in our portfolio for as looooooooooong as humanly possible before letting it slip off the tips of our cold, dead hands”

    And, yes, I did get it too!

  123. ——- I got the same notice from FNBO today that you mentioned. All banks can put temporary holds on accounts because of security issues, whether online or in person. When I have more time, I’ll track down all the online notices & read them.
    ——- More on my Countrywide Bank account opening. 96 hours ago I filled out the application at a Countrywide loan branch, put it in a FedEx overnight envelope along with my check, and deposited it in the FedEx box. Unfortunately, the day’s Fedex pickup had already been made, the next pickup was almost exactly 24 hours later. I estimate it would have arrived at the bank about 60 hours ago. Countrywide paid for the FedEx delivery, there was no charge to me. An hour ago I noted the deposit check had cleared the bank it was drawn on. I was able to verify the account & balance with Countrywide by phone right away. I tried to register for online access, but the Countrywide website is malfunctioning, so I haven’t yet done that. 96 hours from touching pen to paper to having the account balance confirmed is far faster than the “online” process I went through with FNBO last week to open an account with them, plus I had a paper receipt & account number right away. My Countrywide account has actually been in full effect for 48 hours already. Of course, not everyone can get to an office of either institution. It makes me wonder how long it would have taken just to fill out an application and mail it with a check to FNBO in the first place!
    —— For my own education I split a deposit from one bank of mine to FNBO. At 1500 EDT yesterday I ordered the transfer online. The website of FNBO refused to execute the transfer that day, said it had to wait until the next day. Today I got an email from FNBO saying they had received my online order at 1256 EDT, almost 22 hours after I placed the order online. As of now (almost 1700 EDT) the order has not been executed. I also made out a check for the other part of the deposit & mailed it yesterday at 1700. I figure that will arrive in Omaha on Monday the 17th. I am beginning to suspect it’s faster to mail a check & have it posted to the account than to have an online transaction completed. I’ll leave a note when both deposits get into the account.

  124. Can anyone provide insight into using bank-to-bank wire transfer rather than inter-institution transfer for funding my new FNBO-D account? I read above about people’s experiences with the delay in FNBO’s “pulling” funds, and Citibank has too small a transfer limit for “pushing” funds from there to be a good option for the chunk of money I want to send to FNBO. So I thought a wire transfer might be worth the $18.95 charge, if it saves me the three+ days of lost interest involved with the ACH transfer.

    So I’m wondering exactly how the wire transfer works. Supposedly it arrives on the same day, though I’m told by a Citibank rep that there may be up to a day’s delay in Citibank initiating the transfer. Once they do so, is there a dead period where I’m losing interest, as in an ACH transfer, or do the funds transfer instantaneously?

  125. I’m still curious to know more about wire transfers for my own edification, but the immediate point is now moot. My initial deposit turned up at FNBO just two business days after being deducted from the funding account. That fact, combined with my discovering that FNBO charges an additional $10 for incoming wires, decided me on just doing a regular pull of the funds, and hoping that they arrive from Citibank in more like two days than three or four.

  126. Ok. I got all set up with FNBO. The process was straight forward, and wasn’t bad at all. I only transferred $10 from my ING to begin with. Now, I’m ready to transfer the rest of my money. Well, I find it funny that I have to re-add my ING accout as a transfer, even though I used it to open FNBO.

    =Well, My question is: I got to the “verify account” portion of the “Add Transfer Accounts” and I can either do “trial deposits” again and wait a couple days, or I can type in my ING Account Number and Pin Number for instant verification. Is this safe??? (telling them this info?)

    If I tell them my Account and Pin number, will the transfers be instantaneous/same day??? (ie: no 3 day lag time?) (OR, should I just do the trial deposits again, because there would be no benefit to them knowing my account and pin number to ING, except for instant verification?)

    Thanks!

  127. Followup on my comparison of deposit methods. The check I mailed on the afternoon of June 14th was deposited in my account on the 18th & is now drawing interest. The online transfer I ordered at the same time was not actually done for about 96 hours. My source bank account is now down by the online deposit & the amount has still not shown up on my FNBO account, so I am losing interest while waiting.
    What point is there in making online deposits to FNBO?

  128. GMAC Bank is the best that I have found and is great to deal with. Interest Rate as of today 6-23-07 is 5.30% and they give you checks and ATM Cards. Great Customer Service and they even speak English. HSBC or Hong Kong,Shanghi Bank Corp. is definitely one to stay away from if you want service of any kind.

  129. caveat411 says:

    FYI folks! Major disappointment and I have called to provide feedback to supervisor which doesn?t seem to care.

    After the 2week process of applying online, attaining verification of deposits, linking my accounts, and transferring my funds over. I receive a email from FNBO to provide ?additional? validation. It was ridiculous as it?s asking for either a voided check from the funding accounts (hello? they rec?d the verification of deposits already). If you can?t provide a void check (which most of us have online savings from Hsbc or ING).. Then you?ll need to provide your bank statement ?and? a valid ID/Passport.

    IF they had stated this upfront, I would have never signed up. What?s frustrating is the fact they approved my account & linked my funds & moved my money? Then sends me an email stating this additional validation. RIDICULOUS!!!

    What?s odd is that verify the depoisit online is proof that this is your account. I believe they want to see how much $$ you have in the other accounts for marketing purpose. MOst banks (ie. HSBC) would ask for utility bill or something other than your funding account statements. It was strange and the supervisor was just agreeing with me about their strict security policy. However, would not resolve or try to save the account.

    Also, you may cancel out without anytime.. without any penalty or fee.

    I would contact consumer internet affairs to complain so they could Flag FNBO if they aren?t as secured as they have stated.

    I hope this helps?

  130. caveat411 says:

    contacted FDIC to verify certificate (see email response below)

    If you have signed up with FNBO.. you should call the parent company to see if they are affiliated also to provide feedback if you?re experiencing the same as me. I couldn?t get a rep so if anyone finds the answer.. I?d appreciate it.

    Thank you for contacting the FDIC regarding insurance status on FNBO Direct. Its website indicates it is a part of First National Bank of Omaha. The FDIC does not list the name/address of internet branches or subsidiaries of financial institutions since they change names quite frequently, therefore, we are unable to verify whether FNBO Direct is indeed a subsidiary of First National Bank of Omaha. We can confirm however, that First national Bank of Omaha is insured by the FDIC under certificate #5452. The only official website provided to the FDIC by First National Bank of Omaha is: http://www.firstnational.com. You may contact this website for information regarding FNBO Direct.

    We hope this information is helpful.

    Sincerely,

    Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
    Division of Supervision and Consumer Protection
    550 17th St, N.W.
    Washington, DC 20429

  131. Calex in MD says:

    I can empathize with and echo the words of caveat411 above. It took almost 10 days to set this account up with the back and forth micro deposit verifications. I first moved in a small amt of $ and that went ok. I then moved another small amt $30 with no problem. Then when I was sure they had their act together, I tried to move $97K in and they “jammed” the deposit from going forth. They wanted that further verification of the funding account stuff caveat mentioned, (Hey they already accepted the previous two deposits). I spent 25 mins on the phone with a supervisor; contacted FDIC about this. They responded with a “someone will be contacting you” email. Bottom line………. the transfer went through without the extras and FDIC still hasn’t contacted me and I’m still not getting the warm and fuzzies about FNBO.

  132. Calex in MD says:

    I contacted First National Bank of Omaha and they confimed that FNBO is their subsidiary with FDIC certificate # 5452. I can’t believe FDIC said “we are unable to verify whether FNBO Direct is indeed a subsidiary of First National Bank of Omaha “. Oh, ….yeah I guess I could they STILL haven’t gotten back to me after more than a week.

  133. I suspect FNBO is getting overwhelmed by new accounts & deposits. My 3rd batch of deposits mailed to FNBO was at the Post Office early on 6/25 & as of 6/29 has still not been posted to my account. Usually 3 days is the maximum for 1st class mail from my home to Omaha. FNBO doesn’t seem ready for prime time banking action.
    I have looked into GMAC. I sent them an email query about beneficiary accounts (something FNBO won’t provide), and got an affirmative response by email within a few hours. GMAC will provide such, although this isn’t documented in their new account info online.

  134. The only issue to be aware is how to withdraw your money from FNBO, which is NOT free at all, but quite expensive if online.

  135. I have read through this entire thing and have a few comments.

    I opened my FNBO Direct account on 5/3 and have had no problems logging in or seeing the interest earned (twice now).

    Initially, I had a problem transfering in money from my account at Commerce because I had checked off “MMA Savings” instead of plain old “MMA”-note, I had called Commerce specifically to ask which box I should check off because it did not specify online, and the guy gave me the wrong answer!

    Anyway, after a few days of waiting for the tranfer to fail and redoing it with the correct box checked off, my funds appeared and since then all has gone well.

    I am concerned that there will be a rush at the end of September when everyone will be running to pull their funds in case the rate drops dramatically or whatever… guess I’ll have to wait and see. Overall so far a good experience, just a little anxious come September…

  136. David,

    Expensive to withdraw money????

  137. Red,

    Please be advised, there is a $10.00 wire transfer fee for all incoming wire transfers and a $15.00 wire transfer fee for all outgoing wire transfers.

  138. I want to echo each and every word and emotion of “caveat411″ above. I am TOTALLY Pissed off, they alredy double checked my WaMu account and I deposited amount alreayd($500) and now they had sent an email to send them back the current WaMu statement, ID and all trash to VALIDATE(holly crap, I now know that the FNBC was made out of a bunch of idoits and spam artists) the same account again. I am gonna call tomorrow morning and pull off my money and close that shit pot all together.. I am really really pissied off like many here..
    (sorry for my lingo.. its just a form of my emotion!!)

  139. David,

    But zero for typical *online* transfers.

    In your previous post you used the word *online* and I think you meant to say *wire transfer*.

    As for my current opinion of them. Things went pretty smoothly for me. Emigrant was the only problem I encountered (as mentioned many posts earlier) due to their blocking of non-tested/non-slated outgoing accounts. I’d already hooked up the account on the FNBO side (they did their part) but transfer didn’t go thru. So rather than set them up on the Emigrant side, I just double-hopped the money thru my bank account.

    The one time I had to contact FNBO (about the Emigrant matter) they were quick, courteous and coherent.

  140. Natalia says:

    Is anybody else having problems withdrawing money ?

    I just tried to do transfer fund – and at the very end I got *error page* message. I called bank and they told me that transfer fund option not working at this time ( how could that be ? ! bank in business or not ? ), and they offered me wire transfer option for $15.00 that I refused.
    They also suggested to call from 8am to 5pm central time to speak to the managed about waving $15.00 for wire trasnfer- that I will do tomorrow.
    My main issue now – is this bank legit or trustable ? I’m at the point where I want to withdraw all my money from them.

  141. Calex in MD says:

    I’ve had problems with them and so have others (scroll up). Bottom line they are legit. I called there HQ. Their cert # is good. What I believe happened is they got a RUSH with their 6% offer and neither their IT staff or cust service staff was ready for it. Be patient it will work.

  142. As for the money being available immediately at FNBODIRECT, I just opened an account, the opening deposit has gotten there and shows up, however I have gotten an email from FNBODIRECT saying to provide one of two types of ID, like a voided check or a bank statement and copy of drivers licence. This can be faxed or mailed.

    They also say “As soon as we receive this information and enter it into our system we will enable outgoing transfers from your FNBODIRECT acccount”

    Has anyone else gotten such a request for additional information?

  143. Bill FL says:

    This was my experience: I filled out the application and made it to the “Fund Your Account” page. I entered in the account, routing and funding amount info, submitted it and got the “error message” page. So, I called customer support and they told me to log back in and complete the funding again because it had not completed. So, I did that and then got an error message saying the account has already been added and can’t be added again. And it wouldn’t let me submit it with just an amount. In other words, it had linked the account from the previous attempt, but wouldn’t let me use it for funding now. So I called customer support again and explained it to them and they said I would either have to mail in a check (not really what I wanted to do since I was opening an online-only account) or link another account, I couldn’t use my already-linked account for the initial funding because the trial deposits had not been initiated. So I asked how we could the one I entered out of the state of limbo it seemed to be in and they said they couldn’t. I was told even if they cancelled the application and I filled out a new one, that account would still be linked. That seemed odd to me and of course frustrating. I suppose a limitation of the CashEdge system they are using. So I’m not going to use them. Disappointing since I wanted to get the 6%, but I guess ultimately it made me nervous about getting my money out if I had this much trouble getting my money in.

  144. I opened an accout with FNBO on 6/24/07 and closed it on 7/9/07. I cannot believe the red tape I was having to go through to transfer a some funds into the account that I opened!!! I will keep my $ at Emigrantdirect and I would suggest others do the same!!!

    What horrible customer NOservice!!!

  145. Terry,

    Just to clarify………I would like to make sure that Emigrant/FNBO combo folks (like myself and, formerly, yourself) know that Emigrant does not play nicely w/………….well………….ANYBODY!

    In my case (and I think possibly in yours too), it’s not FNBO that has the problem getting the money from Emigrant to FNBO, but actually EMIGRANT that has the problem because regardless of ANY authorization you give/setup w/ FNBO, Emigrant will NOT let the money go unless you set it up on EMIGRANT’S side.

    In my case, rather than waste more time w/ Emigrant, I simply transferred the $$$ from Emigrant, to my bank and finally to FNBO. All went well.

    And while I *did* have to do the autho mini-deposits twice w/ my own bank account, it did take properly the 2nd time and I have not had a single problem w/ FNBO since then.

  146. I looked up the definition of Emigrant, no wonder people are leaving them in droves:

    emigrant: someone who leaves one country to settle in another

  147. Caveat411 says:

    Cancelling your account & getting your funds back… A BIG PAIN..& I am still unable to get my money out.. For those who are as FRUSTRATED as I am.. beware: (read my blogs above)…

    6/30/07:
    FYI again.. I contact FNBO to cancel my account since I don?t feel comfortable send verification via fax (which my goodness.. is a 402 area code. you figure they would provide atleast an 800#). Request the funds to be returned to the same accounts it was pulled from since they are so ?SECURITY CONSCIOUS?. Which the email states if I don?t validate in 30days.. they will return the funds? FYI, it doesn?t state how?

    Anyways, the rep said they can?t return it ACH but via US 1st class mail ? a cashier?s check. I don?t know but this smells like they are playing with the float!!! I?m just floored by how it?s being handled! Which means I lose more daily interest. I am awaiting for my check!!

    So again.. it?s really not worth 6% with all the numerous comments going around with security and holding your funds. They say it?s standard procedures, but there are other ways to verify. Again, This should have been stated upfront BEFORE approving your account. It?s quite peculiar as their privacy policy isn?t as stringent & ?security? is.. I think this is a hit for sniffing out data and marketing purpose.

    Good one FNBO.. but I will continue to spread the word with all the nightmare!!!

    7/10/07
    1. Customer service (email — delay in response…. 3-4days to say, they have fwd my request to the proper dept.. and someone will be in contact.. ‘I am still waiting’)
    Therefore, I’ve spoke to 4 people so far and have said they will execute my request.. and a cashier’s check will be mailed to me..
    1st week, no check..
    I called again.. Rep 2 said, they will execute (minor delay)..
    2nd week, no check..

    I email support from my acct to status .. no response so finally AGAIN called to find out.

    Now, FNBO is saying..in order to mail me a cashier’s check I will need to submit my driver’s license & letter to cancel the account. I don’t know if they are just yanking my chain or PLAYING with the FLOAT.

    I suggest ALL to report them to IRS — for a major audit. Delay in posting and all that is illegal. I have a feeling there will be a huge news on FNBO being audit. & they will have a huge fine. Hopefully some lawyer will take this case & I will be there for a settlement. It’s really awful how FNBO is just playing it…

    Beware.. and good luck pulling your funds out!!! I am still trying.. as for customer service follow through.. NOTHING.. No email, no call back, when I call to find out.. I’m on HOLD for 45mins +.. .. AUGH!!!!

  148. Caveat411, I’ve been thinking about opening an account with then for the past 2 weeks now and today I decided to give it try but just before signing up, I’ve decided to come here and just check the comments once again.

    I must say I am very glad I’ve read your post :-)

  149. My FNBO account began 6/13/07, the date when first deposit of $1,000 was cleared. Then on 7/5/07 I mailed a $1,000 check to be deposited to my FNBO account. They received it 7/9/07 & the check cleared the original bank on 7/10/07. I understood there would be a 3-day hold on the deposit which should have expired by today. On 7/9/07 I ordered a transfer out of my FNBO account, approx. $500 to a different account, which had already been verified (test deposits) on 6/10. The transfer was supposed to be effective 7/12/07 (today). At 2100 on 7/11/07 an email was from service@myaccount.fnbodirect.com, the gist was “the request could not be completed. The account provider for FNBO Direct, Savings has indicated there are not sufficient funds in your account to honor the request. Because this could be a temporary problem…,we will automatically submit this transaction one more time.

    If funds are not available after this attempt, we will suspend your ability to make funds transfer
    requests. This is a Security Precaution. Please check your account balance and deposit funds immediately if needed.

    As a security precaution, future Funds Transfer Settlement Days
    for your FNBO Direct, Savings account have been extended to 4
    days from the current 3 days. This restriction will be removed
    after you complete 3 successful transactions amounting to $1,000.00.”
    Now note, up to the time of this email I had already completed 5 successful transfers amounting to over $40,000. The last paragraph has just put more conditions on my account.
    I called FNBO customer service at 877-370-3707. After explaining the situation & after about 35 minutes on hold, I got my answer.
    The 7/9/07 $1,000 deposit was entered and “an extra zero” was entered on the hold by someone at FNBO. A confusing factor was the fact that the US Treasury on my instructions also deposited $10,000 to this account on 7/12. At this point I am uncertain as to which deposit the “extra zero” was added. In any case, according to the Customer Service Representative (=CSR) my account then showed a negative balance due to their error (which was admitted by the CSR). “the extra zero” is an exact quote from the CSR on the phone to me. An “extra zero” on the $1,000 deposit would have reduced my account a bit, but not enough to create a NSF (non sufficient funds) condition for my transfer. Not “an extra pair of zero’s” which is what it would have taken to make the $1,000 deposit go to $100,000 and make my balance negative. The CSR said the mistake had been rectified & the transfer should go through today (the original date the transfer was supposed to have been made).
    There are many strange things about this event. I find it hard to believe that FNBO has someone manually keying in the amounts being deposited & their holds. I can visualize someone reviewing deposits & clicking “OK” or not with holds automatically being entered based on the amounts from the ACH. Having someone manually enter amounts would be extremely cost-inefficient, time-consuming, and would generate many errors like this one.
    A deposit of $10,000 would automatically generate a review per current banking regulations at most banks, and one would think the error would have been corrected by them at this point. A deposit received from the US Treasury should never have a hold, and should be valid instantaneously, which is my experience at all other banks I have dealt with. In other words I have drawn money from US Treasury deposits on the same day they were made, no ifs, ands or buts, from other banks which have received the exact same type of transfer into their accounts.
    Now I suspect they put an extra zero on the US Treasury deposit. The time of the deposit was 7/12, however on other accounts I have noticed US Treasury ACH transfers are often made the night before the Treasury says they are made, so this might have happened on 7/11, at about the time FNBO was trying to put the $500 transfer into effect. An extra zero on my US Treasury deposit hold would have put my account into a negative range. Needless to say there should never have been a hold put on a US Treasury transfer. If FNBO doesn’t trust a US Treasury transfer at face value, the currency is itself no good.
    My FNBO balance going negative should have set off an alarm at FNBO. Not only should I have received a separate email about his condition, I should have received a personal phone call immediately. This did not happen. This is bizarre.
    After setting down my thoughts, I will have to call a CSR about this now, even though it means another long hold on the phone. The explanation given me this morning doesn’t wash.

  150. Tresh,

    I’d be very interested to see how your situation pans out.

    I seriously haven’t had any problems like the horror stories for some of you folks, but maybe I’ve just been lucky.

    I am about 101% certain that they’re erroring on……..

    #1.) the side of caution

    #2.) the side of their financial benefit

    Despite all of that, they should still improve customer service for some of you folks out there.

  151. Caveat411 — Just to let you know, I have had the exact same experience with a different bank when I tried to close an account, with the exact same conditions demanded, so FNBO is not alone in that.
    —- Details — I have a checking account at a bank about 20 miles away. I opened it about 4 years ago when they were paying a better interest rate than anyone else. Over the years the interest rates they paid fell to the point where keeping the account open made no sense. I transferred most of the balance to other accounts which paid more interest, using checks drawn on the account, until the balance remaining was about $4. They keep sending me statements, with an occasional interest payment of $0.01 or so. In past experience with other banks I have found that drawing a check for the full amount of the last statement, instead of emptying the account & cancelling it, results in a balance of $0.01 or $0.03, something like that, on the next statement due to accrued interest paid at the end of the account cycle, so the account is still in effect & hasn’t been closed.
    I called the other bank to cancel this account & they demanded I either (1) fax them a written request & a xerox of my driver’s license, & they would mail me a check for the balance, or (2) I could show up in person with the same information & they would cancel it on the spot & give me the balance. Only after either (1) or (2) was done would they close this account. Now, $4 wouldn’t pay for the gas I would waste driving out there & back. Also, I no longer have a reason to drive to the area of the bank on any other business, so I just let the matter ride. This was about 8 months ago, and that bank has certainly wasted more than $4 mailing monthly statements to me. I don’t have a fax machine, although I can fax images from my computer, it is a convoluted process.
    — Just for everyone’s grins: I have had a different adverse experience, years ago when regulations for withdrawals & transfers were quite different than they are now. I had about $40,000 in a corporate pension account (I was the owner, sole stockholder, and trustee for the account) in a Key Bank account, and I wanted to transfer it to another bank for better interest rates & less bank charges. This account had been open for about 10 years with many transfers in and many interest payments made. Key Bank had certainly made a lot of money off the pension funds up to that point. They also charged the account $5 per month, their usual charge for business accounts of this kind. The other bank charged nothing for an account of that size, plus they paid better interest. I lived close to both banks, the banks were adjacent, & didn’t want to waste time with mail & holds on checks, etc. I intended to close the account at Key, get a cashier’s check, walk it over to the other bank, and deposit it so the money would start drawing interest immediately. Sounds like a simple, straightforward process, no?
    The process between me and the teller was straightforward up to a point, I presented my ID, the last account statement, and a withdrawal slip. Then the teller told me I would either have to pay a $5 fee for the cashier’s check, or that $5 would be deducted from my balance before the check was made out. I was a bit irritated at this, but did not lose my cool. I explained that this was my money, the bank owed it to me on the spot at my demand, and the fee was unjustified. I then made a request for the withdrawal in cash. Certainly there should be no fee for that. The teller looked a bit flustered, and said that would be dangerous to carry that much cash. I pointed at the other bank across the way, and said, walking a large amount of cash in my pocket across the parking lot shouldn’t be a great problem in broad daylight & I was sure the other bank would accept a cash deposit. The teller then went to the “back” of the office & came out saying they didn’t have that much cash on hand. I then said that since they couldn’t cover a legitimate demand for withdrawal, I would be making a complaint to the state attorney general/bank examiners/FDIC about their inability to cover their accounts. The teller then went again to the “back” and came out saying they would issue a cashier’s check to me at no charge. I was happy to accept this, the check was cut, countersigned by the teller & an officer of Key Bank, the account was closed, I walked the check across the parking lot & opened a new account, the Key Bank cashier’s check cleared with no problems.
    Now the teller’s warning me about a huge cash withdrawal was certainly a legitimate one, which I hope any bank teller would make to any cash customer, I don’t quibble with that. I believe the bank was just trying to milk another fee from another sucker, er customer. Key Bank did have a stated policy on $5 fees for cashier’s checks. But my expectation of their giving me my balance on demand was also legitimate, the bank never told their customers they would be charged anything on closing this kind of account. They were just trying to take advantage of an ambiguity in their fee statement, which they had probably done many times in the past. I have personally closed accounts at other banks many other times, always getting a cashier’s check, and had never been charged before or after this incident.
    Many years prior to that I read the best-seller “Winning Through Intimidation” http://www.amazon.com/Winning-.....038;sr=8-1 at a time in my life when I was much less experienced & very naive. I found the book somewhat entertaining, but thought it was BS. I had absorbed an incident in the book where the author received a sizeable cashier’s check, and felt he would be screwed out of it somehow. He bought an airplane ticket, flew to the town where the main branch of the bank would open, was waiting at the door when it was unlocked on the next business day, walked up to the teller to cash the check. The phones were ringing then, and of the calls was the other party, calling to put a hold on the check so it couldn’t be cashed. But the call was too late & the author got his money.
    Caveat411, it would almost be worth the plane ticket to FNBO to show up at a teller in Omaha & demand your money in cash. Of course they probably have something in their fine print to protect them from that possibility.

  152. I just entered a very long & I thought entertaining replay to Caveat411, but got the message “awaiting moderation”. Apparently this blog does that to long posts.

  153. I just entered a very long & I thought entertaining reply to Caveat411, but got the message “awaiting moderation”. Apparently this blog does that to long posts.

  154. Another update on my FNBO snafu. Having pondered the original explanation & determined it made no sense at all, I called the same customer service number as before, this time I got “Michael” at FNBODirect. Michael did not verify the original explanation & told he did not know why this was made. So I got a different explanation, this one made even less sense. The online order for withdrawal had some kind of unspecified “verification” issue (remember this was for a small percentage of my total balance). The bank to which the withdrawal was to be sent had already been cleared weeks ago by the FNBO Direct process. Because of this “issue” my entire account had been suspended, that is, no withdrawals at all could be made. I was never notified of this until I called the CSR. The email I received I have already quoted. It said nothing about the account being suspended. This is something (one would think) justifying a personal phone call, or at least an email, stating the issue & the reasons why. This did not happen.
    Michael said the reason for the suspension had something to do with 2 transactions happening the same day, one was the check I had mailed in (which has already cleared my bank) and the other was the online withdrawal/transfer order. Despite my questions, he could not explain why one valid, completed, cleared check deposit would have resulted in an account suspension & declaration of an NSF condition. At the time I placed the online order, I received a reply saying it would go through on 7/12, no mention of any problems until last evening, when the original email was sent out and my account was suspended.
    I was on hold for about an hour. While I was on hold, I received an email stating “Your FNBO Direct, Savings account is re-activated and now can be used for the Make Transfer service. If you have any questions, please contact us. Sincerely,” — but there was no signature.
    More later, I don’t want this message to be held up.

  155. I think you readers can tell what was coming up next. Since I had already verified my identity, etc., I told Michael I wished to close the account. He said the check would be cut 7/20/07. I asked why the delay, since everything should have cleared. An exception might be the US Treasury transfer of this morning. I mentioned that to him, and he said there would be a 10-day hold on that transfer. Remember 7/20/07 is 7 business days from today, not 10. Yet another explanation that made no sense. I did not bring this up with the CSR, having my fill of senseless explanations.
    Michael said there would be a cashier’s check issued on 7/20/07. I asked if there would be a fee for the cashier’s check. He didn’t know, and after further delay on his end said there would be no fee for the check. I asked if there was a fee for closing the account at this time. He said no. I asked if I would get the interest credited to my account last month, he said yes.
    I informed him that putting a hold on a transfer to a bank from the US Treasury was unprecedented in my experience, also that suspending someone’s account without making a timely effort to notify the account holder was also unprecedented. He said he understood. More later.

  156. So I ended my most recent call to the FNBODirect CSR saying I would be sending out letters of complaint to the Nebraska & Ohio Attorneys General (or equivalent) and to the Federal Banking authorities (or equivalent), this just for Michael’s information. I asked him to convey this information to his supervisors & told him I invited a call from them. Caveat411, you are in a very good position & have full justification for doing something very like this.
    Based on current TreasuryDirect interest rates, I could have been making $8 a day in interest on the amounts now being held by FNBODirect. FNBO is probably making more money than I could on this amount. This is money right out of my pocket and into FNBO’s. Multiply this by all the other security holds & various means FNBO has obviously been using to take in deposits without paying interest & to delay making withdrawals. Putting a hold on money received directly from the US Treasury smacks of fraud, even if it is allowed by the letter of the law.
    Now that I think about it, I will be writing FNBODirect a letter ordering the withdrawal. Probably should have it certified so they can’t deny receiving it and delay things further. Something very weird is going on there, either a severe level of incompetence with account handling or a campaign to chisel account holders in any way possible. Spread the word.

  157. For everyone’s information:
    Formal written complaint with the OCC about a national bank or its operating subsidiary

    Customer Assistance Group
    1301 McKinney Street
    Suite 3450
    Houston, TX 77010
    http://www.occ.treas.gov/mail1.htm
    You can also send them email, but I want hard copies of all correspondence on this issue.

  158. Tresho,

    I think you hit both of their faults on the head………(regardless that I’ve not had trouble)……….

    #1.) Incompetence w/ account handling

    #2.) Chiseling account holders for every last penny courtesy of their pro-FNBO “ways & means” committee?? LOL!!

    I will maintain that I think they lean toward the EXTREME side of caution for any customer’s money (just lock it up so nothing good *OR* bad happens & that’s always the safest route)……………..****AND****………..this just happens to coincidently be the most protifable method for them to do business as well. (And I know that they KNOW this)

    I think the only thing that might create modified policies to any of these “Pro-FNBO” processes would be legal action taken against them based on a TRULY unlawful handling (or locking, in this case) of someone’s funds. Anybody got ooodles of time & money to kill??? ;)

    Sorry for your dilema.

  159. I will be going through channels. Next stop:

    From http://www.occ.treas.gov/aboutocc.htm
    The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) charters, regulates, and supervises all national banks. It also supervises the federal branches and agencies of foreign banks. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the OCC has four district offices plus an office in London to supervise the international activities of national banks.

    The OCC was established in 1863 as a bureau of the U.S. Department of the Treasury. The OCC is headed by the Comptroller , who is appointed by the President, with the advice and consent of the Senate, for a five-year term. The Comptroller also serves as a director of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and a director of the Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation.

    The OCC’s nationwide staff of examiners conducts on-site reviews of national banks and provides sustained supervision of bank operations. The agency issues rules, legal interpretations, and corporate decisions concerning banking, bank investments, bank community development activities, and other aspects of bank operations.

    National bank examiners supervise domestic and international activities of national banks and perform corporate analyses. Examiners analyze a bank’s loan and investment portfolios, funds management, capital, earnings, liquidity, sensitivity to market risk, and compliance with consumer banking laws, including the Community Reinvestment Act. They review the bank’s internal controls, internal and external audit, and compliance with law. They also evaluate bank management’s ability to identify and control risk.

    In regulating national banks, the OCC has the power to:

    * Examine the banks.
    * Approve or deny applications for new charters, branches, capital, or other changes in corporate or banking structure.
    * Take supervisory actions against banks that do not comply with laws and regulations or that otherwise engage in unsound banking practices. The agency can remove officers and directors, negotiate agreements to change banking practices, and issue cease and desist orders as well as civil money penalties.
    * Issue rules and regulations governing bank investments, lending, and other practices

    For consumer complaints, http://www.occ.treas.gov/customer.htm

  160. The simple fund transfer I ordered on 7/9 finally was completed on 7/16.
    I sent an order to close my FNBO account by certified mail, proof of delivery & signature on 7/12. No record that FNBO has received it by last night 7/18. Today at 3:15 pm EDT on 7/19 I tried to check my account online & only got this “Unfortunately, we are experiencing technical difficulties at this time. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. Please try to access your account information at another time. If you have questions or would like more information, please call an Online Representative at 1-877-370-3707, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. “

  161. 3:17 pm EDT 7/19/07. Checked with the US Postal Service on my order of withdrawal: “Status: Delivered. Your item was delivered at 5:07 AM on July 16, 2007 in OMAHA, NE 68103.”
    3 days have passed with no recognition from FNBO that they received my order.

  162. So I called the FNBO customer service people at their 800 number. They had no record of any such order being received. I am so glad I sent it by certified mail. I asked to be referred to a supervisor, this was done, I gave the tracking number, after about 7 min on hold, was told they had lost the letter I sent. But they didn’t deny I sent it. They offered to wire my money back to the account most of it came from, at no charge to me. They said this would take an additional 2-3 business days. The delay was to verify the accounts, yet again.
    I am eager to terminate my business relationship with FNBO Direct ASAP.

  163. Caveat411 says:

    >>Tresho: thank you for sharing your FNBO woes w/me. You’re definitely going about tracking it all down. I will indeed start filing a complaint, to the treasury board. Obviously if u have more assets, you’re going to get a harder time pulling it out… I do smell a float going on FNBO’s part. The delays are unexcusable.. especially to request cancellation numerous time.. Then to be on hold forever..

    I’ve decided to “relinked” my account there again to see if I could pull my funds out (slowly w/ smaller denominations).. To my surprise, it went through.. I am unable to close it all since my account is still on HOLD status so I am unable to close my account. It’s odd since I did not do the ‘additional verification’ requested as they have indicated when I wanted to pull my funds out. (review my 1st comments above). Obviously, FNBO security isn’t all that stringent…. depending on your asset size there..? I don’t know..

    Anyways, I’ve called FNBO – I believe I spoke to Michael or Shawn. Anyways, the rep said they do not know the policy of FNBO direct. ??? What?? He said they are indeed affliated but am unable to access my account since it is on hold. FNBO direct (online) has a different system than the FNBO hdqtr?! I was baffled by the explaination but he suggest I call during normal business hours to get the “FNBO direct rep” to assist me with my account closure. Typically, he mentioned they could close it upon request, however, they are unable to close mine due to a hold on the account.

    Tresho – if you do call them. You should also request Name and Rep ID#. Also, if this conversation is recorded.

    Thanks again for sharing.. I’ll post when i am finally out of their web.

  164. well, I faxed the information they wanted (drivers license and statement from opening account). Then I initiated a transfer from the FNBO account back to the opening account, just to test. It completed 4 days later. So other’s difficulties not withstanding, I can not see a difficulty here in how my account has been handled. They did ask for the additional ID supposedly prior to enabling withdrawls, but this has not caused a problem for me.

  165. I haven’t had these types of problems with FNBO Direct at all- it took a bit longer than made me comfortable for my money to show up when I opened the account, but since then I have not had any problms and the few times I called with a question I got my answers quickly.

    What are you all planning on doing when the 6% rate is gone? They haven’t promised to keep it, any new promotions out there that I can transfer too?

  166. I am really concerned after hearing about the whole FNBO Fiasco. I am beginning to wonder if I should start pulling out my money there and go somewhere like AmTrust Direct.

    So far, I haven’t had any problems with FNBO, but then again, all of my business with them has been deposits and no withdrawals.

    Korey

  167. Korey – I never had a problem with FNBO until I ordered a withdrawal from the account, then everything fell apart.
    My account was listed as “closed” on 7/20/07 as I requested, and I am still able to check its status online. I have not yet received my balance due. The CSR last Friday stated the transfer would be made by “wire,” but if so, it hasn’t happened. There’s been plenty of time for a check to be mailed. I wonder who’s getting the interest now?
    About 8 business days ago, I sent an email through the FNBO website asking exactly what funds were being held, since the telephone CSR wouldn’t/couldn’t tell me. I received this reply today 7/25 “Thank you for contacting FNBO Direct. The time between withdrawal and deposit, typically 3 business days, is used to monitor transactions and clear funds. Should there be a problem with an incoming deposit, such as attempted fraud, we are able to return those funds to the originating bank. During that period, your deposit is held in a non-interest bearing clearing account managed by our ACH provider, and we do not earn interest on your funds, nor have we received those funds.

    If you have any additional questions, please visit our FAQ’s at http://www.fnbodirect.com, or send us an e-mail.

    Sincerely,

    Jeff Getzfred
    FNBO Direct Representative”

  168. Even though ING is “only” 4.5%, I begin earning interest on my deposits the day after I click submit, even though it takes a few days for them to take it out of my checking account. I know I’m not able to make a withdrawl on that money for 7 days, but at least I’m earning interest on it during that time.

    Although, I am considering moving most of my money to HSBC. I’ve had an account with them for several months, and have kept ~$25 in it. I’ve made a few small deposits and a few small withdrawls here and there, and everything has gone smoothly. Anyone have any better ideas?

  169. Korey Smith says:

    Tresho,
    I made the move to “close” the account. I put close in parenthesis because instead of calling them and saying I wanted to close the account, I just initiated a transfer for the full balance listed in the account. So far, I have had noticed any problems yet. If that transfers over ok, I will then follow-up and let them know that I want to close the account for good. Even if it means I am out some interest, then I am fine with that, just as long as I get what I initiated the transfer for today.

    Korey

  170. Josephine says:

    Korey,

    Did you initiate the transfer from FNBO or from an outside pull? Please
    let us know how does it go… I’m not comfortable about FNBO myself also. Like you, I haven’t had any problems with it , but I haven’t made any withdrawal either.

  171. Well I opened the account with $1. Then I transerred IN $499 more using the transfer button on the FNBO website. Finally after faxing the additional information requested, I requested $250 back to my linked account again via the transfer button on the FNBO Website. Now with my ‘tests’ completed and everything checking out, I’ve initiated a transfer of much more substantial $$$ amounts to the FNBO account, again from my linked account via the transfer button on the FNBO website.

  172. Korey Smith says:

    Josephine,

    I initiated the transfer from FNBO. I’ll keep you guys updated.

    Korey

  173. Korey Smith says:

    Josephine,

    I just wanted to add that after reading the comments from others in this forumn, I decided to try and get my money out of their and not necessarily let them know that I was closing my account.

    Korey

  174. Hi!!

    Thank You so much for this blog! Seriously. I currently have an ING account and I knew there were other online savings accounts making more money I just didn’t know which one to go with. FNBO sounds great! Thank you for such detailed information!

    _N

  175. I just thought I would give a small update…I say small because I haven’t received the money that I withdrew yet, but I haven’t received any communication from FNBO trying to stop me from w/d the money. Also, I have since logged into my FNBO account and it shows it at $0, since I withdrew all of the money, so I think I will get he money. I just hope they aren’t going to send me a money order or cashier’s check. Then again, I did’t have a lot of money in that account (it was around $100.00). I’ll keep you guys updated when I receive the money.

    Korey

  176. Korey Smith says:

    With everything I have heard about CashEdge, I was wanting to know…What software or system (whatever it is called) is used by the other banks offering online savings accounts?

    Korey

  177. I opened a FNBO account this week and had no problems. Used Firefox 2.0 with Mac OS 10.4.10. A bank friend had been telling me about added verifications needed due to the Patriot Act so I was prepared (imagining there would be even more opening faceless online accounts). I like how everything is paperless. If I experience problems with transfers, I will post the details.

  178. Korey Smith says:

    Update…The money I transferred out of FNBO direct came through to my local account today.

  179. My final FNBO report:
    Account closed on FNBO’s records 7/20/07, 8 days after my original request to close it. Cashier’s check was mailed to me on 7/23/07. I got it on 7/27, deposited in my nearest bank ASAP. They “held” the check for 5 business days due to its size. Check funds were finally available on 8/4/07, on that date I drew a check on the funds & transferred them to my higher-interest GMAC account by mail, check was received there on 8/7/07 & posted that day, drawing interest from that time.
    I am so relieved to be out of FNBO’s clutches. Good luck to the rest of you. You’ll need it.

  180. I guess I’m lucky…or maybe I’m not as critical as others. I opened an account with no problems and have withdrawn $ with no problems. I don’t have a million $ in the account so 3 days without interest (whrn I’m getting 6% on longterm savings) doesn’t bother me.

  181. Problems with FNBO account:

    My significant other listed me jointly on an account set up to pay his daughter’s college tuition – in case something happens to him, no delay in paying the college bills. He has only had the account for a month or so, and reports that the application process went smoothly.

    A week ago, I got a “due diligence” email stating they needed some info about my previous employers to comply with Patriot Act. No problem. I call them up, and get out on hold for an eternity waiting for someone to help. I timed it – after 10 minutes, I hung up.

    I figure the email told me I have 30 days to comply, and as I was not sure of the acct #, I waited to get it from my spouse and I also wanted to let him know what was going on. BTW- he is the primary account holder and they did not notify him about the missing info. 7 DAYS later, not 30, we both get emails saying the account is frozen! And it is!

    What is totally unacceptable is that current calls to customer service are disconnected! I even tried calling a number I found in Nebraska, and was also disconnected.

    Rest assured, as soon as we get it straightened out – we will be pulling every penny out and closing the account – can you imagine not being able to get in touch with a live person to help figuring out what went wrong? Thankfully, the tuition bill is paid for the fall already.

    Just a word to the wise – opening the account may be smooth, but dealing FNBO Direct cutomer service is not ready for prime time.

  182. Hmmm………….

    I rec’d an e-mail this morning regarding……….”DUE DILLIGENCE”………and apparently they need my ‘previous’ employer information for them to fulfill Patriot Act obligations.

    Can’t even say I remember this in their app, but I figured I’d do it over the phone to ensure this was not an e-mail scam.

    Well…..I can’t get thru to them………………..ON ***ANY*** OF THEIR LINES!!

    Anybody else want to try??

    (800) 370-3707

  183. EDIT:

    You can get it to answer, but options 1 thru 4 result in either a hangup or a voice message “Your call cannot be connected”.

    And I’ve had an account for a couple months now. ????

  184. I also received the “Due Dilligence” email. The email looks like spam mail. Anyway I will try to call FNBO as well.

  185. I just got this email….it says it’s their 2nd attempt?? I am currently onhold….I pushed 1 for new customers. This makes me a little nervous….It also seems like it wouldn’t be legal??

  186. Jennifer,

    I just checked my e-mail again………you are correct……….e-mail title says “Due Dilligence 2nd Request”.

    Just tried calling again & got the same message, “We are unable to connect your call, please hang up & dial again.”

    ??

  187. I think something shady is going on…

  188. I got the “Due Diligence” email too. Tried to all the 3707 # in the email. 3 times but couldn’t connect. I’ve had the account for several months, as well, and don’t remember being asked for that information. I finally emailed them the information.

    No other online bank is as edgy and uptight as this one. Previous to this BS, they sent me a “survey”. The score would have been lower otherwise, if possible.

  189. Finally got thru & spoke w/ a guy named “Mike”.

    He answered……….”Thank you for calling FNBO Direct, is this call in regards to the ‘due diligence’ e-mail?”

    I said, “Yes.”

    He said, “This was an error on our part. It was supposed to go out to a small # of people & instead, went out to a large # of people by accident. Please disregard it!”

    Whew!

    That was weird!!!!

  190. Trust me I will be cancelling my account. Has anyone tried calling one of their branches for help…

  191. I opened an account in May. Everything has gone okay so far. Today, I receive an e-mail asking for information on my previous employer. AND this is supposed to be their 2nd attempt at this information and they threatend to close my account?!! I have never received any e-mails regarding missing info. and why do they feel a need to threaten for such minor reason????
    Getting worried…..
    Any comments?

  192. WILL BE GOING TO ATM TO WITHDRAW ALL MY MONEY, WITH EXCEPTION OF 10.00. HAS ANYONE TRIED TO USE THEIR TM CARD FOR WITHDRAW???

  193. I’ve received the same ?Due Dilligence 2nd Request?. How can I know if I am in the “small group” or “large group”?

  194. ANY SUGGESTION ON THSI ACCOUNT

  195. Red and jennifer ~ I got that same email today also. I called and after waiting a VERY long time decided to hang up and just provide them the requested info [last employer].

    Shortly after doing that I received another email from FNBO with the following message:

    Please disregard the email sent on August 10, 2007, with the subject line: Due Diligence 2nd Request. This email was sent in error and we apologize for the confusion it has caused. If Due Diligence information is required, you will receive a follow-up email. Again we apologize for this inconvenience.

  196. Here’s the apology email…..

    Please disregard the email sent on August 10, 2007, with the subject line: Due Diligence 2nd Request. This email was sent in error and we apologize for the confusion it has caused. If Due Diligence information is required, you will receive a follow-up email. Again we apologize for this inconvenience.

    If you have any questions, please send an email to fulfillment@fnbodirect.com or call 877-370-3707. Please reference your FNBO Direct account number when you contact us.

    Thank you for choosing FNBO Direct for your Online Savings Account.

    Sincerely,
    FNBO Direct Customer Service

  197. yea same thing happen to me…

    wtf

  198. i had the same thing happen….damn it stressed me out!! i transfered some money just to be on the safe side….

  199. I got both the 2nd request and apology e-mail too. I think it was just an errant e-mail. It happens, it just doesn’t help when you’re an online bank and people are already somewhat wary of security issues.

  200. Ya, all’s well. Just checked my e-mail again after gettin’ back into work & the apology’s there.

    I think the thing that scared me more than the e-mail was the point at which I could *not* get thru to them.

    When all 4 extensions………(ALL FOUR) resulted in a “We cannot connect your call” or a sudden click & dial-tone………….mmmmmmmmmmmmm…………thaaaaaaaaat’ll start uppin’ the heartbeat a little bit when 80% of your liquid cash is sittin’ there supposedly earning interest.

    And my recent experience with Sunrocket DEFINITELY aided the high heart rate scenario.

    But SR aside, I *am* glad that FNBO jumped on the apology…….and it did also instill confidence having the guy answer the phone KNOWING what I was calling about and subsiding my fears instantly.

    ;)

  201. Can’t resist pitching in.
    FNBO is sure diligent, they sent me the same bogus warning everyone seemed to get & my account has been closed for 2 solid weeks! I also got their email apology at 15:09 EDT. Now that I’ve got my money out, I can safely ignore (I think) anything else they send me besides a 1099-INT for 2007.
    FNBO = Zombie banking

  202. Well, after transferring all of my money out of FNBO and getting it, I had called them and let them know I wanted to close my account. Well, today I received the interest that was left in the account in the form of a check for 35 cents.

    Hopefully, that will be the last I hear from FNBO.

  203. I am fill in their survey saying I am very dissatisfied with the “Due Diligence 2nd Request” email and not being able to reach a person when calling thier 877-xxx-xxxx number.

  204. CAVEAT411 says:

    The saga continues.. If you are reading my blog from 6/30 til now. I am slowly pulling funds out before I close out. Seems easier that way.. NOT WORTH the hassle of 6%.

    And again.. FNBO slip up?? Maybe or maybe not.. If really an error Talk about incompetent & rec’d the same email ‘due diligence’. After sending the info.. of course, an email of apology trailed after. I personally think they are sniffing out all the info.. a marketing ploy to just get information on you.

    I would highly suggest, after close out.. contact your primary banks that you’ve linked your accounts to FNBO to BLOCK access no matter what. That would be the safe.. since obviously they aren’t consistent with traditional nor cutting edge banking rules.

    Tresho –> congrats that you are out! I’m almost done with them too.

    For all that want some great tips… try indymac.. CD — there’s the 1yr & 1x bump up. Which for me is great! And the short-term rates are competitive.

    If you have established relationship, I found the CS rep to ‘negotiate’ custom terms if you have over 10K to invest. I’ve gotten a sweet deal for 3mos. which worked out well. Not as high as 6% but definitely higher than HSBC and ING and of course.. NO HEADACHES and SCARES like how my experiences w/ FNBO..

    I highly suggest reporting them to the treasury board for an audit…

    Good luck to you all! Cheers!

  205. I, too, had trouble today logging into the FNBO site. That’s why I ended up here. I can see why the banks with brick & mortar buildings use a different web site address – they don’t want just any one of their regular customers trying it because there are too many kinks in the system as yet. For example, I tried to open an Amtrust account @ 5.36% a couple of weeks ago and they rejected me because of an error on my credit report. I still don’t know what that has to do with me putting money into their bank. Why wouldn’t they want to take my money if they thought I had bad credit?

  206. The scary thing about FNBO is how your money just “disappears” for a few days, out of your checking & nowhere to be found on their website. Also, I received an e-mail saying I needed to send a voided check to verify the same account they’ve been using to pull money out of or else I can’t make any withdrawals WHAT???!!! Right now I’ve got alot of money in limbo land, keep calling customer service & they are assuring me that the money is just “in-transit”.

    I would highly recommend ING as I’ve never had any of these problems with them & am slowly funneling my money back to them. Besides, you can see daily you accrued interest, no waiting to find out at the end of the month or insane waiting times to get your money out.

    Has anyone else got the voided check request e-mail & what did you do?

  207. Wendy,
    The “disappearing act” that you refer to, from my experience with any online savings account, is normal, but it varies how long it disappears for and shows up on “other side” depending on where you are sending or receiving the money to or from.

    In other words, depending on the who the account is with, you may noticed some lag time between it being deducted from one account and added to another account.

  208. It would be interesting to know the lag time between the time the money is withdrawn from your local account to the time it is added to an online savings account. Does anyone have experience with any of the following online Savings accounts in regard to that issue:

    EmigrantDirect
    HSBCDirect
    CitiBank Ultimate Savings Account

    Korey

  209. anonymous says:

    So, let me get this straight. You people are closing your accounts due to an e-mail that was sent out in error, which FNBO was incredibly quick in sending follow-up e-mails to explain; and for the bank’s attempt to be compliant with the Patriot Act, which has everything to do with Due Diligence and employment verification? Shouldn’t we blame the administration that created the Patriot Act instead of a multi-billion dollar institution that doesn’t want to lose its banking charter for unknowingly supporting the funding of terrorism and money laundering? If this is so, it is the end of the world as we know it.

  210. anonymous says:

    not to mention, even though First National Bank of Omaha (FNBO) has been around LONGER than Nebraska itself has been around, FNBO Direct is a new project that started less than a year ago, started by the CEO of FNBO himself. there are going to be some bumps along the way, but sooner or later there will be none. within the company, everyone’s always scrambling around because everything’s changing every day. These things can happen with the click of a button. I still trust my money with FNBO Direct, and FNBO’s other products.

    -Sincerely
    A reliable source, and very satisfied customer.

  211. Anonymous:

    I don’t think the email that was sent out in error is the ONLY reason people feel unsure about FNBO. Have you read any of the other problems many of us have encountered? I agree and understand there will be bumps along the road, but when my funds are restricted or unavailable at various times, I have a right to be nervous. It’s my SAVINGS! I can’t afford not to be nervous.

  212. anonymous says:

    I am aware that is not the only reason(reliable source, remember?). I do however STILL believe that people are overreacting about the problems encountered. Your money will always be safe with FNBO, it’s not a small enough institution to be bough out, or go under. I understand it seems fishy because not everybody is from right here in Omaha, but I still assure you, FNBO is a great place for your money, and i stand by that.

  213. I got out. I didn’t want to but that Due Dilgence thing freaked me out. Plus, it always takes a long time to reach someone at customer service, when I transfer funds back to my checking account it took like 5 freakin days. And I don’t care how new this service is, that is no excuse for all the stuff that I have read and heard about FNBO. But hey, if your happy with FNBO, cool. I’m going bank to HSBC.

  214. Just applied on Thursday and waiting for approval to DEPOSIT money. Why so much delay to aprove a deposit?

  215. This is weird! — I just got an email from FNBO stating that “I’m now earning interest in my initial deposit,” and that I still have to confirm my account by going to sign in and finishing my application. ??? It’s like one of the first emails I got from them after I signed up. I’ve had an account with them for a few months now. I’ve deposited/withdrew money a few times over that period, and the last time, I withdrew everything besides $0.01. I have no idea what that email meant. So, I emailed them, and asked them. Their response was, “If you are still having problems, call 1-800-####” blah blah. What the hell is their email support if they tell me to call a phone number?

    David — have you read the above posts? If you read it, you may change your mind about putting your money here. Plus, the ‘special’ is only for another month and a half. Not worth it to me.

  216. I’m looking to open an online savings account. I’m aware that FNBO has only been operating a short time in comparison to other online savings groups, but it’s features and rates look favorable. I was wondering what people’s experiences have been with direct deposits from their paychecks. More specifically, is the deposit made any quicker or slower from your pay date vs. a transfer from a bank account?

  217. Kelli,
    I’m not sure if it would be any quicker to use them as a direct deposit account or not, although I would tend to think it would be since most banks. I guess one of the benefits of using direct deposit would be cutting out one extra step in getting the money to a savings account (whether it is FNBO or any other savings account). If you go with the standard method of transfers, you have to schedule your transfer for the date of your pay and then FNBO would have to initiate that transfer. I don’t remember how long it takes for FNBO to initiate transfers and then credit the money to your savings, but if it is like one of my online savings accounts, it might be slow.

    YMMV

  218. Sorry, I didn’t complete my thought above…
    I?m not sure if it would be any quicker to use them as a direct deposit account or not, although I would tend to think it would be since most banks credit your deposit the day they receive it and you don’t have to wait for FNBO (or whatever bank you are using) to initiate the transfer between your funding account.

  219. With this so called saving account, more like a money market account, remember that regulation D allows for six debits to your account per month. If you plan to have direct deposit from your job, or wherever, and then use this account for withdrawals… think twice, as they will close it.

  220. Korey Smith says:

    Jose,

    Even though I wasn’t the one who asked the original question, that thought didn’t cross my mind. I know my employer allows us to have up 3 direct deposit sources for our checks to go to. So, if an individual has this similar setup, they could automatically have direct deposited, say $60.00 per paycheck into their FNBO (or whatever bank) savings account and the rest into their regular checking account. If they had a third account they wanted money deposited to, they could have money direct deposited to that account as well. Of course, this would only apply to an individual whose employer allows you to have more than one direct deposit setup. I know my employer allows you to do it either by fixed amounts to each account or by percentage, with an option to have the balance either direct-deposited into an account or payed by live check. When I was doing this, I would have $400.00 direct deposited into one account and the balance direct deposited into the other checking account. I guess that is what I was thinking of when Kelli asked the question above.

  221. And actually, that’s exactly what I’m going for. I plan on just depositing a portion of my paycheck into this savings account. And I don’t plan on touching it for a year or two since I’m saving up for a down payment on a home. Yes, I was aware of the withrawal regulations. Thank you for your help.

  222. Well, I’ve been with FNBODirect now for about 4 months and want to say that I have accounts at 3 other similar online institutions and FNBO has been the most pleasant.
    Some pluses:

    Each month, right on the last day, I notice my interest deposits, unlike others who have strange mid-month date.

    The interest amount always happily surprises me, whereas the other accounts sometimes make me wonder if I’m getting my full APR,

    and their Java/JSP-based website is smooth, simple, and useful.

    I’ve heard complaints on here about lag time between withdraw and deposit when transferring funds. Although no one likes this (it used to burn me up when I first started dealing with online, high-yield accounts), they ALL do it. It is there way of making interest on your money for a day or two before completing the deposit. They all try to stretch the time out to the longest acceptable time consumers will tolerate, and that’s just capitalism. I hate it but, again, they ALL do it.

    Beefs with other accounts:
    I closed my ELOAN account because they repeated (every night) had their site ‘down for maintenance’ late night, which is nearly the only time I access my accounts.
    HSBC is pretty good, but their rate isn’t as competitive as it should be and their login security, which makes me type one password and click a secondary password out on a visual keyboard, is too much of a hassle for me, though I still keep my account with them.
    amtrust has a good rate, but their website totally sucks. They’ve chosen clunky and unproven microsoft components. It feels like kids from highschool wrote this webapp instead of an enterprise class application. I just opened an account there with a small amount of money to see how things go.

    Hope this review is useful.

    PS. I’m curious to see how things go with FNBODirect after the end of this month (end of promotion). Hope their rate continues to be competitive.

  223. Korey Smith says:

    Even though I closed my FNBO account (several reasons, including getting rid of un-needed accounts), I am interested in seeing where they go once their introductory rate is over.

  224. I also was wondering about their rate after the promotion ends at the end of this month, so I went to their web site this morning and found the following from their faq page: “Our rate is typically determined based on market condition such as, but not bound by, the Federal Funds rate. We strive to always maintain a very competitive rate, and plan to do so when our promotion ends in September 28, 2007. Our rate prior to 5/01/2007 was 5.25% APY.”

  225. I calculated out the actual interest I was receiving when I had money with FNBO, and it was something like, 3.28%. So, I pulled my money. I get exactly (down to the penny) the interest at other banks that they advertise.

  226. Guys, don’t even touch these guys, just go with Wamu’s free checking and it’s Online Savings account which gives a generous 5% APR, and real-time money transferring between it’s checking & savings

  227. I want to comment on JJ’s note above that his computed interest rate was 3.28%.

    I just checked my interest credited 8/31 for August. I made no deposits for August, nor did I make any withdrawls.

    Here’s what I found. August had 31 days so that’s .084931 of the year, assuming 365 days (i.e. divide 31 by 365). .084931506 of 5.84% comes to 0.00496 % for the month of August. That would mean if I had a million dollar balance my interest credit for the month should be $4960.00. Now, surprise, surprise, I don’t have a $1,000,000 balance, but based on the actual interest they credited and the ratios between my balance and $1m, if I had a $1m balance they would have credited me $4959.80. Okay, I cannot explain the 20 cent discrepancy, but the amount of interest is being credited is as very much as claimed. (note: the 6.00 rate is the APR, the interest rate is 5.84 %) The 0.16% is accomplished via interest compounding, that is throughtout the year, a portion of the interest you get is based on interest on interest you got in previous months. Over the course of the year that adds the 0.16 % to the rate, and results in an APY of 6.00

    Now I don’t have any idea how JJ figured he was getting 3.23. That is a large descrepancy. If his point was that when you transfer money in there’s a delay in crediting interest until the $$ arrive in your account, that’s true. But based on what I see, after the deposit is credited they’re figuring the interest at the rates they claim.

    I don’t deposit and withdrawl money on a daily basis, so over the course of a 6 or 7 month period, the two days in and out is not really an issue (and it is revealed and described in their FAQs), though I don’t like it any better than anyone else here.

    I’d point out that if I had $1,000,000 with the FDIC insurance cap at $100,000 I’d limit my deposts here to a little less than that so that the account with interest credited never exceeded that amount.

    Is anyone other than JJ seeing lower than claimed interest calculations.

    Comments?

  228. Bill,

    I agree.

    In fact I even made a post about it, but apparently it didn’t get thru.

    Beside the fact that it’s fraudulent, I just can’t imagine a bank even CLOSE to the size of FNBO would try & pull such a stunt.

    I’m getting the 6% they claim…….(5.84, whatever).

    I think JJ is either mistaken, frauded (in which case he needs to make a phone call) or suffering from blurry vision….. ;)

  229. RE: “I asked them if I could set up third-party transfers like paying my credit card bill with the routing and account numbers, and they said that would be fine. Hopefully it stays that way?”

    Paying Credit Card with a transfer
    Opened 2 accounts with 200K +
    I too asked if credit cards could be paid off using FNBO routing and my account number. FNBO answer;Yes!
    Paid off a large promo 0% card day before promo rate expired. FNBO declined to honor WITHOUT any notice to me. CC company also did not notice me on dishonored transfer. Net result;$116.accrued in interest charges at non-promo rates by cc company before I realized what had happened. No one willing to take responsibilty for.

  230. DO NOT USE FNBO says:

    I applied for the acct online on Monday, 9/10 and r’cvd 4 email verifications that everything was processed, accepted and approved. On Monday, I opted for the “real time” fund verification and was approved on the spot. FOUR days later, i r’cve an email that the funds were not able to be transferred after-all. I called customer service to inquire why, expecting the problem to be resolved instantly over the phone. After being transferred 3 times by numerous reps that could not tell me ANYTHING or give me any explanations, I was asked to mail a paper check to them. I asked for someone to simply re-try the transfer while I was on the phone b/c I have already lost 4 days of interest and didn’t want to loose even more w/ snail mail and the apparently slow customer service employees at FNBO. I was told that this was not an option, but again, no one could tell me why. Now I feel incredibly vulnerable that I gave these people ALL of my personal info including xwords to my other bank accounts. I asked for the application and acct at FNBO to be closed on the spot and was transferred again, put on hold for over 10 minutes and told reluctantly that it should be done by this afternoon. No one was able to give me any verification whatsoever that it was being done. I hope I didn’t just get scammed by these people and I really regret going out on a limb with this company. They have wasted a lot of my time.

  231. phosphorous says:

    I’ve had a good experience with FNBO, since last May. But I’ve discovered that Vanguard’s California Tax Exempt MM gives
    (effectively) for me 6.0% too…

    link

  232. I just phoned FNBO Direct this evening and found out that they will be paying 5.05% APY after their 6% promo rate expires on September 28.

  233. If you haven?t opened an account yet, I?d go with someone else that?s at 5.05% that?s a little more stable?

  234. Yeah, Iagree. Overall FNBO has been ok, but I’ve had to submit a signed form 2 seperate times to initiate a funds transfer. It was worth it for 6%, but not for 5.05%. But maybe all of the banks are going to head south with their APY’s? I hope not.

  235. HSBC went from 5.05 to 4.50 and Ingdirect dropped to 4.30 So FNBO still has the leading interest rate.

  236. …………along with Emigrant, also at 5.05%……….well……….at least for now!! ;)

    tick-tock, tick-tock, tick-tock!

  237. Flagstar is at 5.30% apy and AmTrust is at 5.21% apy today. Flagstar is well known to me through the lending industry so I will likely move my money to them. Hopefully they stay at 5.30% for a while.

  238. Doh!! Check your e-mail………..

    Just got the official e-mail from FNBO……….5.05% as of 9/29/07!!!!

    Same as my Emigrant account. Now what to do ???

  239. Ge Interest plus is still paying 5.3% on a balance of $50,000 or higher. It’s not insured but they are AAA rated. Just got he FNBO e-mail. That’s quite a drop to 5.05%.

  240. colin: flagstar won’t quote interest rates until you put in zipcode. When I put my zipcode (30077) in the interest rate chart goes away.
    I guess this means they pay different rates for different locations, and don’t offer anything in my location. I wonder, is it legal to offer different rates based upon where the depositor receives mail? Anyone know anything about EVERBANK offering 5.84 –> 6.01 APY see https://www.everbank.com/ see both their 3 month intro’s on checking and money market. Any comments ?

  241. Lee Knouse says:

    I had a very negative experience with FNBO. I think that they are going to go the way of NetBank.

    I called up customer service to ask a question about a fee that I incurred on the account and was met by a disturbing amount of resistance. I could not believe how rude they were. To top it all off, I asked to close my account, and the rep said, “Sure, I will get that taken care of for you,” and hung up! I was shocked.

    I think we will see this portion of First National Bank of Omaha go away VERY soon. Poor interface, poor customer service….not much going for FNBO Direct after their teaser rate goes away.

  242. Hi, first of all, I love your website and have signed up for many of the offers on the site through you. Thanks so much for teaching me about money, I was clueless before this site (sad I know).
    Anyway, I signed up for the FNBO savings account, my question is this. Would it be wise to have part of my husband’s paycheck every month put into the FNBO account, and then can we have our mortgage and his student loan paid via FNBO account? I ask this because right now we have 2 banks. Part of his check goes into one bank and our mortgage and his student loan are taken monthly from this savings account. Then the other part of his check is put into another bank (a checking account) and we use that money for everything else (other than mortgage and student loan). Would it be wiser to use FNBO for this?
    Thanks
    Mia

  243. Mia – As long as you have enough money in your checking account for day-to-day expenses, I don’t see anything wrong with that at all.

  244. Why are you all so concerned about the “float” period. Yes, the banks are making money on your money. That’s what they do. As long as its not more than a week or so, I have no problem with them doing this. They are in the banking business to make money on your money. They are providing a service. Plus, you are getting a great rate on your savings, more than any local bank. Please put your money under a mattress if this upsets you.

  245. I too will be closing my FNBO Direct account after less than a month. I wish I had read more of the comments here before I bothered to open it. What an annoying, time-consuming mistake that was.

  246. Nancy Goodenow says:

    I deposited money about a year ago with FNBO and I have had very good service. When they first got going on line, there was a hitch in my account on line doing transfers, but they were so helpful – during the time this was going on, they wired money with no charge until they could get it worked out. They called me back to check on things and I have had great luck with them. They have been the best on line bank and I am using others. I get transfers done frequently, no problem. Thanks FNBO!!

  247. ” As a result of recent decreases in market interest rates, your FNBO Direct Online Savings Account rate will now be 4.30% APY¹.”

    Just received this email 1/25/08. Rate dropped from 5.05% to 4.30%.

  248. In the Terms & Conditions from the FNBO site under “System and Technical Requirements” it says

    Any IBM compatible computer that meet the following requirements can access FNBO Direct Online.

    Operating System:
    Windows XP Home Edition
    Windows XP Professional
    Windows 2000
    anyone know why this would be?

    I have windows 98

  249. Write and ask them. I think you just have to make sure you have internet explorer 6 browser 128-bit.

  250. One of the PCs at work is a Win98 machine and I’ve accessed FNBO in IE6, Firefox *and* Opera, so defintely doable.

  251. Rate’s still dropping. 3.25% as of today. Still pretty competitive to similar offerings, but boy, I miss the days of 6%.

  252. Hey All,

    look I have noticed when I link an external bank account from FNBO webpage via trial deposits, the trial deposits are transferred to my other banks almost instantaneously (well next day) . But when I transfer money from and too the external accounts it takes 3 BUSINESS days!!!

    Do you know why there is such a difference – there should be no difference between trial deposits and regular transfers….. it makes me angry….

  253. FNBO Direct interest rate is now at 3.50% APY, no minimum balance to get the rate.

  254. Actually it’s been 3.5% for quite a while. Am I missing something?

    (confuzzled)

    One that recently *did* change, however, is Emigrant. They finally got off their 2.75% run and are now at 3.00%.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] The account opening process is quite simple, taking less than 10 minutes to complete in five steps and everything was done online (if only I could answer correctly one of the security questions that FNBO asked me when it tried to connect to my BoA account and verify my ownership ). Now I am just waiting for the trial deposit to hit my BoA account and go back to complete the process. According to Jonathan at My Money Blog, it shouldn’t take long. [...]

  2. [...] FNBO Direct is also offering 3.50% APY with no fees and no minimum balance requirements, and has maintained a decent track record of consistently high rates. [...]

  3. [...] people who are with FNBO Direct right now earning 6.0% APY are asking – What is FNBO Direct’s rate going to be after [...]

  4. Good Spots for Temporary Savings « Family Money Today says:

    [...] FNBO Direct is also offering 3.50% APY with no fees and no minimum balance requirements, and has maintained a decent track record of consistently high rates. [...]

  5. [...] FNBO Direct holds steady at 3.50% APY. (FNBO Direct review) [...]

  6. [...] are all very competitive for their respective lengths. The FNBO Direct liquid savings account (my review) also holds steady at 3.25% [...]

  7. [...] Direct is now at 2.80% APY. See my account review here. Their CD rates have dropped [...]

  8. [...] Direct is now at 2.60% APY. See my account review here. Their CD rates have dropped [...]

  9. [...] Included in my “sorry, your video was lame” e-mail was an offer for a $25 bonus if you open an FNBO Direct Online BillPay account and make one bill payment. To get the bonus, you will have an opened FNBO Direct savings account, currently paying 3.50% APY (my review). [...]

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