Albert Banking App Review: Smart Savings, No Fee $250 Cash Advances, $75 Referral Bonus

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Albert is another new fintech “super app” that wants to combine your banking, budgeting, saving, and investing needs all in one place. On their paid “Genius” tier, Albert includes a team of humans that you can chat with and ask specific questions via text chat or email (not phone). More highlights:

  • Banking. No minimum and no monthly fees. Cash back offers on certain purchases through debit card. Up to $250 in cash advances until next paycheck with no interest (but up to $4.99 fee). Banking products through Sutton Bank, member FDIC.
  • Budgeting. “Smart Savings” feature analyzes your spending, income, and bills and sets aside small amounts of money into a separate account, automatically on your behalf. They will also suggest subscriptions to cancel, bills to negotiate, cheaper car insurance, etc.
  • Savings. You can set up multiple “Goals” like emergency fund, house downpayment, or vacation. Albert will give you a 0.10% to 0.25% “bonus”, which is basically interest.
  • Investing. Requires Genius upgrade. Seems like many other robo-advisors that create and manage a portfolio based on a questionnaire. $1 minimum balance. Albert Investments, LLC is an SEC Registered Investment Advisor.
  • Genius premium tier. Core banking functionality is free, but to access the financial advice of Geniuses, you must subscribe at a minimum cost of $4 per month. The official price is “pay what you think is fair”. First month is free.
  • $75 referral bonus for new users. Details below.

My experience. I opened an Albert account myself to check it out. The opening process was smooth, but immediately after I signed up for the “Smart Savings” feature, they sucked out $28 from my linked Chase checking account. I guess they preemptively analyzed my Chase account instead of the Albert account, which is not what I expected. In looking at other app store reviews, a common complaint is that the “Smart Savings” took out too much money and triggered overdraft fees on their linked accounts. I’d be careful of this feature. I’m not sure how I feel about the data mining of my non-Albert accounts.

I then tried to take advantage of their Instant Cash option with “no fees, no interest, and no credit check”. Honestly, this feature sounds like it would be very popular if it worked as smoothly as promised. Note that if you want the cash instantly, you have to pay a $4.99 fee. If you are willing to wait 3 days, then there is no fee.

Initially, I kept running into errors. I finally started the process and you do have to answer a few questions regarding your income. They will also data mine your external account to make sure you have regular direct deposits coming in. Finally, you must provide them your external debit card number, as they will charge the debit card to make sure you pay back the Instant Cash when your next paycheck arrives.

The cash back offers on the debit card are similar to those single-use offers from American Express and Chase. These may vary by user, but I received “10% off one Doordash order (max $5 discount)” and “10% off one Target purchase (max $5 discount)” with similar offers for Starbucks, Whole Foods, Lyft, Etsy, Shell, McDonalds, Walmart, and Sephora. A few bucks here and there, but it could add up.

I never upgraded to Genius, as I was not interested in their robo-advisor feature. The core features of Smart Savings and Instant Cash do not require the upgrade.

$75 referral bonus details. The Albert referral program lets you refer new users, and both the referred and referrer get $75 when the new account receives a qualifying direct deposit of $200 or more into Albert Cash within 30 days of account opening. This my Albert referral link – thanks if you use it! Here’s a screenshot of my $75 cash bonus posting the exact same day as my first direct deposit. Fast and as promised.

As noted in my Turning Small Deals into a $100,000 Nest Egg post, you can motivate yourself by treating these bonuses as a way to max out your Roth IRA. $6,000 annual limit = $500 per month = $125 per week. (Once you fund your Roth IRA, who knows how big it might grow?)

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Best Interest Rates on Cash – August 2021 Update

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Here’s my monthly roundup of the best interest rates on cash as of August 2021, roughly sorted from shortest to longest maturities. I look for lesser-known opportunities to earn 3% APY and higher while still keeping your principal FDIC-insured or equivalent. Check out my Ultimate Rate-Chaser Calculator to see how much extra interest you’d earn by moving money between accounts. Rates listed are available to everyone nationwide. Rates checked as of 8/10/2021.

Fintech accounts
Available only to individual investors, fintech companies often pay higher-than-market rates in order to achieve fast short-term growth (often using venture capital). I define “fintech” as a software layer on top of a different bank’s FDIC insurance. These do NOT require a certain number debit card purchases per month. Read about the types of due diligences you should do whenever opening a new bank account.

  • 3% APY on up to $100,000. The top rate is still 3% APY for July through September 2021 (actually up to 3.5% APY with their credit card), and they have not indicated any upcoming rate drop. HM Bradley requires a recurring direct deposit every month and a savings rate of at least 20%. See my HM Bradley review.
  • 3% APY on 10% of direct deposits + 1% APY on $25,000. One Finance lets you earn 3% APY on “auto-save” deposits (up to 10% of your direct deposit, up to $1,000 per month). Separately, they also pay 1% APY on up to another $25,000 with direct deposit. New customer $50 bonus via referral. See my One Finance review.
  • 3% APY on up to $15,000. Porte requires a one-time direct deposit of $1,000+ to open a savings account. New customer $50 bonus via referral. See my Porte review.
  • 1.20% APY on up to $50,000. OnJuno recently updated their rate tiers, while keeping their promise to existing customers with a grandfathered rate. If you don’t maintain a $500 direct deposit each month, you’ll still earn 1.20% on up to $5k. See my updated OnJuno review.

High-yield savings accounts
While the huge megabanks pay essentially no interest, it’s easy to open a new “piggy-back” savings account and simply move some funds over from your existing checking account. The interest rates on savings accounts can drop at any time, so I list the top rates as well as competitive rates from banks with a history of competitive rates. Some banks will bait you with a temporary top rate and then lower the rates in the hopes that you are too lazy to leave.

  • T-Mobile Money is still at 1.00% APY with no minimum balance requirements. The main focus is on the 4% APY on your first $3,000 of balances as a qualifying T-mobile customer plus other hoops, but the lesser-known perk is the 1% APY for everyone. Thanks to the readers who helped me understand this. There are several other established high-yield savings accounts at closer to 0.50% APY.

Short-term guaranteed rates (1 year and under)
A common question is what to do with a big pile of cash that you’re waiting to deploy shortly (just sold your house, just sold your business, legal settlement, inheritance). My usual advice is to keep things simple and take your time. If not a savings account, then put it in a flexible short-term CD under the FDIC limits until you have a plan.

  • No Penalty CDs offer a fixed interest rate that can never go down, but you can still take out your money (once) without any fees if you want to use it elsewhere. Marcus has a 7-month No Penalty CD at 0.45% APY with a $500 minimum deposit. Ally Bank has a 11-month No Penalty CD at 0.50% APY for all balance tiers. CIT Bank has a 11-month No Penalty CD at 0.30% APY with a $1,000 minimum deposit. You may wish to open multiple CDs in smaller increments for more flexibility.
  • Lafayette Federal Credit Union has a 12-month CD at 0.80% APY ($500 min). Early withdrawal penalty is 6 months of interest. Anyone can join this credit union via partner organization ($10 one-time fee).

Money market mutual funds + Ultra-short bond ETFs
Many brokerage firms that pay out very little interest on their default cash sweep funds (and keep the difference for themselves). Unfortunately, money market fund rates are very low across the board right now. Ultra-short bond funds are another possible alternative, but they are NOT FDIC-insured and may experience short-term losses at times. These numbers are just for reference, not a recommendation.

  • The default sweep option is the Vanguard Federal Money Market Fund which has an SEC yield of 0.01%. Vanguard Cash Reserves Federal Money Market Fund (formerly Prime Money Market) currently pays 0.01% SEC yield.
  • Vanguard Ultra-Short-Term Bond Fund currently pays 0.27% SEC yield ($3,000 min) and 0.37% SEC Yield ($50,000 min). The average duration is ~1 year, so your principal may vary a little bit.
  • The PIMCO Enhanced Short Maturity Active Bond ETF (MINT) has a 0.22% SEC yield and the iShares Short Maturity Bond ETF (NEAR) has a 0.41% SEC yield while holding a portfolio of investment-grade bonds with an average duration of ~6 months.

Treasury Bills and Ultra-short Treasury ETFs
Another option is to buy individual Treasury bills which come in a variety of maturities from 4-weeks to 52-weeks. You can also invest in ETFs that hold a rotating basket of short-term Treasury Bills for you, while charging a small management fee for doing so. T-bill interest is exempt from state and local income taxes. Right now, this section isn’t very interesting as T-Bills are yielding close to zero!

  • You can build your own T-Bill ladder at TreasuryDirect.gov or via a brokerage account with a bond desk like Vanguard and Fidelity. Here are the current Treasury Bill rates. As of 8/10/2021, a new 4-week T-Bill had the equivalent of 0.05% annualized interest and a 52-week T-Bill had the equivalent of 0.08% annualized interest.
  • The Goldman Sachs Access Treasury 0-1 Year ETF (GBIL) has a -0.07% SEC yield and the SPDR Bloomberg Barclays 1-3 Month T-Bill ETF (BIL) has a -0.10% (!) SEC yield. GBIL appears to have a slightly longer average maturity than BIL.

US Savings Bonds
Series I Savings Bonds offer rates that are linked to inflation and backed by the US government. You must hold them for at least a year. If you redeem them within 5 years there is a penalty of the last 3 months of interest. The annual purchase limit is $10,000 per Social Security Number, available online at TreasuryDirect.gov. You can also buy an additional $5,000 in paper I bonds using your tax refund with IRS Form 8888.

  • “I Bonds” bought between May 2021 and October 2021 will earn a 3.54% rate for the first six months. The rate of the subsequent 6-month period will be based on inflation again. More info here.
  • In mid-October 2021, the CPI will be announced and you will have a short period where you will have a very close estimate of the rate for the next 12 months. I will have another post up at that time.
  • See below about EE Bonds as a potential long-term bond alternative.

Prepaid Cards with Attached Savings Accounts
A small subset of prepaid debit cards have an “attached” FDIC-insured savings account with exceptionally high interest rates. The negatives are that balances are severely capped, and there are many fees that you must be careful to avoid (lest they eat up your interest). There is a long list of previous offers that have already disappeared with little notice. I don’t personally recommend nor use any of these anymore, as I feel the work required and risk of messing up exceeds any small potential benefit.

  • Mango Money pays 6% APY on up to $2,500, if you manage to jump through several hoops. Requirements include $1,500+ in “signature” purchases and a minimum balance of $25.00 at the end of the month.

Rewards checking accounts
These unique checking accounts pay above-average interest rates, but with unique risks. You have to jump through certain hoops which usually involve 10+ debit card purchases each cycle, a certain number of ACH/direct deposits, and/or a certain number of logins per month. If you make a mistake (or they judge that you did) you risk earning zero interest for that month. Some folks don’t mind the extra work and attention required, while others would rather not bother. Rates can also drop suddenly, leaving a “bait-and-switch” feeling.

  • The Bank of Denver pays 2.00% APY on up to $25,000 if you make 12 debit card purchases of $5+ each, receive only online statements, and make at least 1 ACH credit or debit transaction per statement cycle. The rate recently dropped. If you meet those qualifications, you can also link a Kasasa savings account that pays 1.00% APY on up to $50k. Thanks to reader Bill for the updated info.
  • Devon Bank has a Kasasa Checking paying 2.50% APY on up to $10,000, plus a Kasasa savings account paying 2.50% APY on up to $10,000 (and 0.85% APY on up to $50,000). You’ll need at least 12 debit transactions of $3+ and other requirements every month.
  • Presidential Bank pays 2.25% APY on balances up to $25,000, if you maintain a $500+ direct deposit and at least 7 electronic withdrawals per month (ATM, POS, ACH and Billpay counts).
  • Evansville Teachers Federal Credit Union pays 3.30% APY on up to $20,000. You’ll need at least 15 debit transactions and other requirements every month.
  • Lake Michigan Credit Union pays 3.00% APY on up to $15,000. You’ll need at least 10 debit transactions and other requirements every month.
  • Find a locally-restricted rewards checking account at DepositAccounts.

Certificates of deposit (greater than 1 year)
CDs offer higher rates, but come with an early withdrawal penalty. By finding a bank CD with a reasonable early withdrawal penalty, you can enjoy higher rates but maintain access in a true emergency. Alternatively, consider building a CD ladder of different maturity lengths (ex. 1/2/3/4/5-years) such that you have access to part of the ladder each year, but your blended interest rate is higher than a savings account. When one CD matures, use that money to buy another 5-year CD to keep the ladder going. Some CDs also offer “add-ons” where you can deposit more funds if rates drop.

  • Abound Credit Union has a special 13-month Share Certificate at 0.80% APY ($500 min), a special 47-month Share Certificate at 1.45% APY ($500 min), and a 59-month Share Certificate at 1.35% APY ($500 min). Early withdrawal penalty is 1 year of interest (and only with the consent of the credit union, so be aware). Anyone can join this credit union via partner organization ($10 one-time fee).
  • NASA Federal Credit Union has a special 49-month Share Certificate at 1.15% APY ($10,000 min). Early withdrawal penalty is 1 year of interest. Anyone can join this credit union by joining the National Space Society (free). Note that NASA FCU may perform a hard credit check as part of new member application.
  • Lafayette Federal Credit Union has a 5-year CD at 1.26% APY ($500 min). Early withdrawal penalty is 6 months of interest. Anyone can join this credit union via partner organization ($10 one-time fee).
  • You can buy certificates of deposit via the bond desks of Vanguard and Fidelity. You may need an account to see the rates. These “brokered CDs” offer FDIC insurance and easy laddering, but they don’t come with predictable early withdrawal penalties. Right now, I see a 5-year CD at 1.05% APY. Be wary of higher rates from callable CDs listed by Fidelity.

Longer-term Instruments
I’d use these with caution due to increased interest rate risk, but I still track them to see the rest of the current yield curve.

  • Willing to lock up your money for 10 years? You can buy long-term certificates of deposit via the bond desks of Vanguard and Fidelity. These “brokered CDs” offer FDIC insurance, but they don’t come with predictable early withdrawal penalties. You might find something that pays more than your other brokerage cash and Treasury options. Right now, I see a 10-year CD at 1.55% APY vs. 1.45% for a 10-year Treasury. Watch out for higher rates from callable CDs from Fidelity.
  • How about two decades? Series EE Savings Bonds are not indexed to inflation, but they have a unique guarantee that the value will double in value in 20 years, which equals a guaranteed return of 3.5% a year. However, if you don’t hold for that long, you’ll be stuck with the normal rate which is quite low (currently 0.10%). I view this as a huge early withdrawal penalty. But if holding for 20 years isn’t an issue, it can also serve as a hedge against prolonged deflation during that time. Purchase limit is $10,000 each calendar year for each Social Security Number. As of 8/10/2021, the 20-year Treasury Bond rate was 1.90%.

All rates were checked as of 8/10/2021.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

USDC Stablecoin Reserves Breakdown July 2021

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

For those following stablecoin, Centre (founded by Circle) has released another breakdown of USDC reserves as of July 16, 2021. The accounting firm Grant Thornton attests that the total fair value of US dollar denominated assets held in segregated accounts are at least equal to the now $22.2 billion of USDC in circulation. Here is their breakdown of the reserves:

I honestly don’t see why they don’t just keep it all in cash. If they maintain the highest level of trust, they can make so much money elsewhere. Yet, while I am not a fan of seeing the 9% in commercial paper and 5% in corporate bonds, this breakdown is much better than Tether (USDT) reserves breakdown. Tether reported only 3% in cash and 65% in commercial paper, which would make it one of the the largest commercial paper holders in the world, yet nobody has any idea whose paper they own! I’m disappointed in USDC, but I would never actually own USDT.

Bloomberg’s Matt Levine has observed that “most of what actually happens with Bitcoin is about rediscovering financial history and re-creating the traditional financial system from scratch.” The same goes for stablecoin deposits, as we are seeing banking without FDIC insurance to even the playing field amongst big and small banks (and protect individual depositors). As in the past, since there is the chance of a “bank failure” and/or fraud, people demand higher interest for higher risk, while the safer places can get away with paying less interest. Consider the current interest rates on USDC deposits:

Although if we keep following that history model, then at some point there will be a stablecoin crisis where some portion of folks will lose money, leading to much tighter regulations about maintaining reserves, etc.

The poor transparency about stablecoin reserves and the lack of FDIC-insurance are why I don’t list these APYs in my monthly updates on the best rates on cash. You must perform your own due diligence on stablecoin risks.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Best Interest Rates on Cash – July 2021 Update

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Here’s my monthly roundup of the best interest rates on cash as of July 2021, roughly sorted from shortest to longest maturities. You will find lesser-known opportunities to earn 3% APY and higher while still keeping your principal FDIC-insured or equivalent. Check out my Ultimate Rate-Chaser Calculator to see how much extra interest you’d earn by moving money between accounts. Rates listed are available to everyone nationwide. Rates checked as of 7/13/2021.

Fintech accounts
Available only to individual investors, fintech companies often pay higher-than-market rates in order to achieve fast short-term growth (often using venture capital). I define “fintech” as a software layer on top of a different bank’s FDIC insurance. These do NOT require a certain number debit card purchases per month. Read about the types of due diligences you should do whenever opening a new bank account.

  • 3% APY on up to $100,000. The top rate is still 3% APY for July through September 2021 (actually up to 3.5% APY with their credit card), and they have not indicated any upcoming rate drop. HM Bradley requires a recurring direct deposit every month and a savings rate of at least 20%. See my HM Bradley review.
  • 3% APY on 10% of direct deposits + 1% APY on $25,000. One Finance lets you earn 3% APY on “auto-save” deposits (up to 10% of your direct deposit, up to $1,000 per month). Separately, they also pay 1% APY on up to another $25,000 with direct deposit. New customer $50 bonus via referral. See my One Finance review.
  • 3% APY on up to $15,000. Porte requires a one-time direct deposit of $1,000+ to open a savings account. New customer $100 bonus via referral. See my Porte review.
  • 1.20% APY on up to $50,000. OnJuno recently updated their rate tiers, while keeping their promise to existing customers with a grandfathered rate. If you don’t maintain a $500 direct deposit each month, you’ll still earn 1.20% on up to $5k. See my updated OnJuno review.

High-yield savings accounts
While the huge megabanks pay essentially no interest, it’s easy to open a new “piggy-back” savings account and simply move some funds over from your existing checking account. The interest rates on savings accounts can drop at any time, so I list the top rates as well as competitive rates from banks with a history of competitive rates. Some banks will bait you with a temporary top rate and then lower the rates in the hopes that you are too lazy to leave.

  • T-Mobile Money is still at 1.00% APY with no minimum balance requirements. The main focus is on the 4% APY on your first $3,000 of balances as a qualifying T-mobile customer plus other hoops, but the lesser-known perk is the 1% APY for everyone. Thanks to the readers who helped me understand this. There are several other established high-yield savings accounts at closer to 0.50% APY.

Short-term guaranteed rates (1 year and under)
A common question is what to do with a big pile of cash that you’re waiting to deploy shortly (just sold your house, just sold your business, legal settlement, inheritance). My usual advice is to keep things simple and take your time. If not a savings account, then put it in a flexible short-term CD under the FDIC limits until you have a plan.

  • No Penalty CDs offer a fixed interest rate that can never go down, but you can still take out your money (once) without any fees if you want to use it elsewhere. Marcus has a 7-month No Penalty CD at 0.45% APY with a $500 minimum deposit. Ally Bank has a 11-month No Penalty CD at 0.50% APY for all balance tiers. CIT Bank has a 11-month No Penalty CD at 0.30% APY with a $1,000 minimum deposit. You may wish to open multiple CDs in smaller increments for more flexibility.
  • CommunityWide Federal Credit Union has a 12-month CD at 0.85% APY ($1,000 min). Early withdrawal penalty is calculated as the amount of the withdrawal times the remaining term (days) of this certificate at the rate of 2 times the APR (divided by 365) paid on this certificate. Anyone can join this credit union via partner organization ($5 one-time fee).

Money market mutual funds + Ultra-short bond ETFs
Many brokerage firms that pay out very little interest on their default cash sweep funds (and keep the difference for themselves). Unfortunately, money market fund rates are very low across the board right now. Ultra-short bond funds are another possible alternative, but they are NOT FDIC-insured and may experience short-term losses at times. These numbers are just for reference, not a recommendation.

  • The default sweep option is the Vanguard Federal Money Market Fund which has an SEC yield of 0.01%. Vanguard Cash Reserves Federal Money Market Fund (formerly Prime Money Market) currently pays 0.01% SEC yield.
  • Vanguard Ultra-Short-Term Bond Fund currently pays 0.28% SEC yield ($3,000 min) and 0.38% SEC Yield ($50,000 min). The average duration is ~1 year, so your principal may vary a little bit.
  • The PIMCO Enhanced Short Maturity Active Bond ETF (MINT) has a 0.25% SEC yield and the iShares Short Maturity Bond ETF (NEAR) has a 0.36% SEC yield while holding a portfolio of investment-grade bonds with an average duration of ~6 months.

Treasury Bills and Ultra-short Treasury ETFs
Another option is to buy individual Treasury bills which come in a variety of maturities from 4-weeks to 52-weeks. You can also invest in ETFs that hold a rotating basket of short-term Treasury Bills for you, while charging a small management fee for doing so. T-bill interest is exempt from state and local income taxes. Right now, this section isn’t very interesting as T-Bills are yielding close to zero!

  • You can build your own T-Bill ladder at TreasuryDirect.gov or via a brokerage account with a bond desk like Vanguard and Fidelity. Here are the current Treasury Bill rates. As of 7/13/2021, a new 4-week T-Bill had the equivalent of 0.05% annualized interest and a 52-week T-Bill had the equivalent of 0.07% annualized interest.
  • The Goldman Sachs Access Treasury 0-1 Year ETF (GBIL) has a -0.09% SEC yield and the SPDR Bloomberg Barclays 1-3 Month T-Bill ETF (BIL) has a -0.12% (!) SEC yield. GBIL appears to have a slightly longer average maturity than BIL.

US Savings Bonds
Series I Savings Bonds offer rates that are linked to inflation and backed by the US government. You must hold them for at least a year. If you redeem them within 5 years there is a penalty of the last 3 months of interest. The annual purchase limit is $10,000 per Social Security Number, available online at TreasuryDirect.gov. You can also buy an additional $5,000 in paper I bonds using your tax refund with IRS Form 8888.

  • “I Bonds” bought between May 2021 and October 2021 will earn a 3.54% rate for the first six months. The rate of the subsequent 6-month period will be based on inflation again. More info here.
  • In mid-October 2021, the CPI will be announced and you will have a short period where you will have a very close estimate of the rate for the next 12 months. I will have another post up at that time.
  • See below about EE Bonds as a potential long-term bond alternative.

Prepaid Cards with Attached Savings Accounts
A small subset of prepaid debit cards have an “attached” FDIC-insured savings account with exceptionally high interest rates. The negatives are that balances are severely capped, and there are many fees that you must be careful to avoid (lest they eat up your interest). There is a long list of previous offers that have already disappeared with little notice. I don’t personally recommend nor use any of these anymore, as I feel the work required and risk of messing up exceeds any small potential benefit.

  • Mango Money pays 6% APY on up to $2,500, if you manage to jump through several hoops. Requirements include $1,500+ in “signature” purchases and a minimum balance of $25.00 at the end of the month.

Rewards checking accounts
These unique checking accounts pay above-average interest rates, but with unique risks. You have to jump through certain hoops which usually involve 10+ debit card purchases each cycle, a certain number of ACH/direct deposits, and/or a certain number of logins per month. If you make a mistake (or they judge that you did) you risk earning zero interest for that month. Some folks don’t mind the extra work and attention required, while others would rather not bother. Rates can also drop suddenly, leaving a “bait-and-switch” feeling.

  • The Bank of Denver pays 2.00% APY on up to $25,000 if you make 12 debit card purchases of $5+ each, receive only online statements, and make at least 1 ACH credit or debit transaction per statement cycle. The rate recently dropped. If you meet those qualifications, you can also link a Kasasa savings account that pays 1.00% APY on up to $50k. Thanks to reader Bill for the updated info.
  • Devon Bank has a Kasasa Checking paying 2.50% APY on up to $10,000, plus a Kasasa savings account paying 2.50% APY on up to $10,000 (and 0.85% APY on up to $50,000). You’ll need at least 12 debit transactions of $3+ and other requirements every month.
  • Presidential Bank pays 2.25% APY on balances up to $25,000, if you maintain a $500+ direct deposit and at least 7 electronic withdrawals per month (ATM, POS, ACH and Billpay counts).
  • Evansville Teachers Federal Credit Union pays 3.30% APY on up to $20,000. You’ll need at least 15 debit transactions and other requirements every month.
  • Lake Michigan Credit Union pays 3.00% APY on up to $15,000. You’ll need at least 10 debit transactions and other requirements every month.
  • Find a locally-restricted rewards checking account at DepositAccounts.

Certificates of deposit (greater than 1 year)
CDs offer higher rates, but come with an early withdrawal penalty. By finding a bank CD with a reasonable early withdrawal penalty, you can enjoy higher rates but maintain access in a true emergency. Alternatively, consider building a CD ladder of different maturity lengths (ex. 1/2/3/4/5-years) such that you have access to part of the ladder each year, but your blended interest rate is higher than a savings account. When one CD matures, use that money to buy another 5-year CD to keep the ladder going. Some CDs also offer “add-ons” where you can deposit more funds if rates drop.

  • NASA Federal Credit Union has a special 49-month Share Certificate at 1.35% APY ($10,000 min). Early withdrawal penalty is 1 year of interest. Anyone can join this credit union by joining the National Space Society (free). Note that NASA FCU may perform a hard credit check as part of new member application.
  • Abound Credit Union has a special 18-month Share Certificate at 0.80% APY ($500 min), a special 47-month Share Certificate at 1.45% APY ($500 min), and a 59-month Share Certificate at 1.35% APY ($500 min). Early withdrawal penalty is 1 year of interest (and only with the consent of the credit union, so be aware). Anyone can join this credit union via partner organization ($10 one-time fee).
  • Lafayette Federal Credit Union has a 5-year CD at 1.26% APY ($500 min). Early withdrawal penalty is 6 months of interest. Anyone can join this credit union via partner organization ($10 one-time fee).
  • You can buy certificates of deposit via the bond desks of Vanguard and Fidelity. You may need an account to see the rates. These “brokered CDs” offer FDIC insurance and easy laddering, but they don’t come with predictable early withdrawal penalties. Right now, I see a 5-year CD at 1.00% APY. Be wary of higher rates from callable CDs listed by Fidelity.

Longer-term Instruments
I’d use these with caution due to increased interest rate risk, but I still track them to see the rest of the current yield curve.

  • Willing to lock up your money for 10 years? You can buy long-term certificates of deposit via the bond desks of Vanguard and Fidelity. These “brokered CDs” offer FDIC insurance, but they don’t come with predictable early withdrawal penalties. You might find something that pays more than your other brokerage cash and Treasury options. Right now, I see a 10-year CD at 1.80% APY vs. 1.41% for a 10-year Treasury. Watch out for higher rates from callable CDs from Fidelity.
  • How about two decades? Series EE Savings Bonds are not indexed to inflation, but they have a unique guarantee that the value will double in value in 20 years, which equals a guaranteed return of 3.5% a year. However, if you don’t hold for that long, you’ll be stuck with the normal rate which is quite low (currently 0.10%). I view this as a huge early withdrawal penalty. But if holding for 20 years isn’t an issue, it can also serve as a hedge against prolonged deflation during that time. Purchase limit is $10,000 each calendar year for each Social Security Number. As of 7/13/2021, the 20-year Treasury Bond rate was 1.96%.

All rates were checked as of 7/13/2021.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

BlockFi Promos: $250 BTC Bonus, 10% APY Interest on USDC, Bitcoin Rewards Credit Card

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Updated: Deposit bonus, APY promo, and new credit card details. BlockFi is a cryptocurrency platform that both pays interest on crypto deposits (including stablecoins) and lets you gain liquidity by borrowing cash backed by your cryptocurrency. Two promotions going on now include the up to $250 bonus Bitcoin for new deposits and the 10% APY on stablecoin deposits.

Up to $250 in bonus Bitcoin for new clients that sign up and fund a new BlockFi Interest Account. Here are the updated bonus tiers:

  • Deposit $25 to $1,499 Get $15 in BTC.
  • Deposit $1,500 to $19,999, Get $20 in BTC.
  • Deposit $20,000 to $39,999, Get $40 in BTC.
  • Deposit $40,000 to $74,999, Get $75 in BTC.
  • Deposit $75,000 to $99,999, Get $150 in BTC.
  • Deposit $100,000+, Get $250 in BTC.

This must be your first deposit, and you must make the qualifying deposits within 30 days of account opening. The required holding period is roughly 3 months. This one is an affiliate offer and you should see the promo code partner250 auto-filled on your application.

New BlockFi clients who sign up with a specific partner referral code and fund their account during the promotion period (current calendar month ending at 23:59:59 UTC on the last day of the month) are eligible to receive a tiered bonus paid in BTC. To be eligible for the promotion, this must be your first ever deposit in the BlockFi Interest Account, and you must maintain a $100+ crypto balance through the 14th of the month at 23:59:59 UTC two and a half months from the month of eligibility in order to remain eligible. Eligible payouts occur on the 15th of every month on a rolling basis. If the 15th falls on a weekend, then the payout will occur by the end of the next business day (ex. If you participate in the promo in December, your bonus will be paid out March 15th). This offer is not valid in conjunction with any other current or past promotions and the promo code on the account will be used to determine promo eligibility for new accounts. The bonus will be paid in BTC based on the prevailing market price at the time of payment. Payout will be based on your average daily balance (USD equivalent) maintained through 23:59:59 UTC on the 14th on the month you are eligible to be paid on. Any withdrawals made before 23:59:59 UTC on the 14th of the month you are eligible to be paid out on may affect your tier. BlockFi Interest Accounts are available in most countries worldwide and all U.S. states other than NY. There is a maximum of one bonus per client. This offer is not valid in conjunction with other promotions or offers. Terms subject to change. Rates for BlockFi products are subject to change. Digital currency is not legal tender, is not backed by the government, and BIA accounts are not subject to FDIC or SIPC protections.

To fund larger amounts quickly, you can do a wire transfer from your bank account or USDC transfer from Coinbase/Coinbase Pro. BlockFi also now supports free ACH transfers direct from your bank account, with reported transfer limits of $5,000 per day. Both deposits and withdrawals are fee-free. Linking is done via the Plaid platform, which means BlockFi never sees your passwords and your info is encrypted.


As of 7/1/2021, the BlockFi Interest Account (BIA) currently pays 4% APY on up to 0.5 Bitcoin (BTC) and 7.5% APY on up to $50,000 of USDC/GUSD stablecoins (subject to change on a monthly basis). There are no trade requirements, but when you deposit USD it will be converted to the GUSD (Gemini stablecoin) by default. (You can then use it to buy USDC or something else if you wish.) You could simply hold the stablecoin and earn interest until the bonus posts. Their overall business model is to earn a spread on the difference between lending out money and paying interest.

To earn interest on crypto, we lend assets to highly vetted and audited institutional counterparties. The interest we are able to pay is based on the yield that we are able to generate from lending, which directly correlates to the market demand in the space (I.e. what rate institutions are willing to pay to borrow specific crypto assets, as it varies from asset to asset).

BIA is available in 49 of 50 U.S. states (excluding New York). One free crypto withdrawal per calendar month and one free stablecoin withdrawal per month. After that, additional stablecoin withdrawals are $0.25 each.

I find it interesting these are the current interest rates on USDC from various exchanges (subject to balance limits):

Coinbase is probably the most established and has the highest market value, followed by Blockfi and then Voyager. But the APYs are so wildly different, are they accurate reflections of the relative amount of risk involved? All are multi-billion dollar companies. Voyager is a publicly-traded company on a Canadian stock exchange.

10% APY stablecoin promo through July 31st. Blockfi is offering 10% APY on USDC/GUSD if they are new stablecoin deposits added after 4/21/21.

New and existing BlockFi clients who fund and maintain additional USD stablecoin balances (excluding Tether and DAI) during the promotion period (4/22/21 00:00:00 UTC – 7/31/21 23:59:59 UTC) are eligible to receive a rate boost to 10% APY in GUSD on those additional balances.

Only additional USD stablecoin balances will be considered for this promotion. A snapshot of your USD stablecoin balance will be taken on 04/21/2021 23:59:59 UTC, and only additional USD stablecoin balances from 04/22/2021 to 07/31/2021 will be counted towards your bonus. Trades into USD stablecoin will also count towards your balance.

Blockfi credit card. The new Blockfi Rewards Visa Signature card has is a new rewards credit card that earns BTC instead of cash back. They’ve been adding a few new perks and removed the annual fee, so that altogether it can be a good compliment for Blockfi users. You can only join the waitlist if you already have an open BlockFi BIA account, so I’d grab the deposit bonus first. Here are the highlights:

  • Earn 3.5% back in bitcoin during your first 3 months of card ownership.
  • 2% extra APY on your stablecoin holdings
  • Earn 0.25% back on all eligible trades, up to $500 in BTC each month.
  • Earn 1.5% back in bitcoin on every purchase.
  • Earn 2% back in bitcoin on every purchase over $50,000 of annual spend.
  • No annual fee.

BlockFi is definitely one of the more well-established crypto sites, but you should do your own due diligence as it is not an FDIC-insured bank account nor a SIPC-insured brokerage account. I found that they were backed by some reputable firms including Fidelity Investments and Coinbase, with over $100 million raised so far. They use Gemini as their primary custodian, which is a licensed custodian and regulated by the New York State Department of Financial Services. As such, they will still require your name, address, and Social Security Number to verify the identity of all accountholders.

Bottom line. BlockFi offering up to $250 in bonus Bitcoin, depending on deposit size, for new clients that sign up and fund a new BlockFi Interest Account. They also pay interest on both Bitcoin and stablecoin.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Coinbase Interest Account: Earn 4% APY on USDC Stablecoin Deposits, Backed By Coinbase

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Coinbase just announced its Coinbase Savings account product which pays 4% APY on USDC stablecoin deposits. There are several competitors in this area designed to compete against traditional bank savings accounts, even though they aren’t FDIC insured. The important difference here is that Coinbase is the most established and well-capitalized crypto exchange platform in the world. Let’s see how that changes things.

I’ve already explored the potential risks of high-interest stablecoin accounts, but they boil down to:

  • Stablecoin price risk. Every US dollar stablecoin is supposed to be backed with $1 of real US dollars and/or cash equivalents in a regulated custodial account, so that you can sell it for $1.00. Stablecoin providers hire independent auditing companies to attest that there are actually enough dollars in bank accounts. Tether is an example of a stablecoin with what I feel is questionable collateral backed by a group that has already lied in the past. USD Coin is partially controlled by Coinbase itself and has a far cleaner history as far as I can tell. You can view the USDC audit reports here done by Grant Thornton LLP.
  • Counterparty risk. At an FDIC-insured bank, you give them your dollars and the bank lends it out, but the government promises you’ll get your money back even if the bank fails. There is no FDIC insurance on this account. The guarantee is from Coinbase itself, and the positive news is that Coinbase is the largest cryptocurrency exchange platform in the world and a publicly-listed company on the Nasdaq (ticker COIN) with has a current market cap of $50 billion.

Coinbase also claims that they are safer than the competition because their lending practices are more sound:

We have recently seen the rise of crypto interest accounts that offer attractive rates on customers’ assets. While the high interest rates are appealing, they can present varying levels of risk. When you read the full terms and conditions, you may find that your assets are loaned to unidentified third parties and subject to their credit risk, which could result in a total loss of your crypto holdings.

Coinbase Borrow lets verified owners borrow up to $20,000 backed by their Bitcoin holdings as collateral, with no fees or credit checks. You are allowed to borrow up to 40% of your Bitcoin value at an interest rate of 7.9% APY. Theoretically, that means BTC could drop 60% before the outstanding principal exceeds the collateral, and as long as Coinbase sells before then, Coinbase won’t lose any money. However, that’s not the most important part. You’re not just a asset-backed lender. Coinbase itself as a $50 billion company is also guaranteeing your USDC deposits in the Coinbase Lend program.

Altogether, this makes the Coinbase Lend interest account one of the “safest” stablecoins held and guaranteed by one of the “safest” crypto exchanges. But is that safe enough? Each person will have to decide for themselves. It’s definitely not the same as an FDIC-insured bank, and I like my cash to be as safe and liquid as possible. At the same time, many folks are okay with giving up FDIC-insurance for only 1.35% APY from car demand notes backed by Toyota’s leasing arm. It’s not a question of
“Is it 100% safe?” as much as “Is it safe enough for 4% APY interest?”.

Currently, there is high demand for cash to enter the crypto-world as traditional banks are still avoiding that role, so you may decide to enjoy the arbitrage opportunity while it lasts. Note: “Pre-enrollment is currently available to eligible US residents except those residing in HI & NY.”

New users can open a Coinbase account and get $5 in free Bitcoin after your photo ID is verified. You can even earn $28+ in more free crypto when you learn more about different cryptocurrencies. More are added over time. I would view these as lottery tickets, as perhaps one of them will skyrocket in value. You can do these activities even if you skip the interest account.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Unifimoney App Review: Up to $1,000 Bitcoin Bonus Details

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Unifimoney is a new “money super app” which promises to help manage all of your assets in a single mobile app. I should start by mentioning that the app is currently iPhone/iOS only. Here’s a quick rundown at what it includes:

  • High-yield checking account. Allpoint ATM network, Billpay, Remote Check Deposit, 0.20% APY. FDIC insurance through UMB Bank.
  • Cash back credit card. Launching later this year with “target” 1.5-2% cash back rewards.
  • Self-directed brokerage account. $0 commission stock trades. SIPC-insured through broker-dealer DriveWealth.
  • Crypto and precious metals trading account. Bitcoin + 30 others, gold, silver. Uses Gemini trust, regulated and reputable crypto custodians, same as the BlockFi promo.
  • Roboadvisor. 0.15% annual advisory fee. SEC-registered RIA.

That’s a pretty impressive bundle out of the gate, especially considering that most other companies start with one thing and then add on other features. For example, Robinhood started with free stock trades, then tried to add on high-yield checking. Ally Bank went many years before buying the brokerage firm TradeKing and renaming it Ally Invest. Unifimoney seems to have put a lot of different parts together and jumped through all the regulatory hoops, but will it work as a user-friendly package?

New user bonus details (Up to $1,000 Bitcoin). First, they need to attract some customers to try it out. I like trying out new apps, but a good bonus is always appreciated. They have a tiered bonus, starting with a $25 bitcoin bonus after depositing $1,000, going all the way up to a $1,000 bonus for a $100,000 deposit. Here is the full chart:

Here’s how those bonuses break down in terms of annualized return. Note some have a 30-day holding period and some have a 90-day holding period.

  • $25 BTC bonus for holding $1,000 for 30 days works out to the equivalent of 30% APY.
  • $100 BTC bonus for holding $10,000 for 30 days works out to the equivalent of 12% APY.
  • $250 BTC bonus for holding $20,000 for 90 days works out to the equivalent of 5% APY.
  • $500 BTC bonus for holding $50,000 for 90 days works out to the equivalent of 4% APY.
  • $1,000 BTC bonus for holding $100,000 for 90 days works out to the equivalent of 4% APY.

So far, those numbers are pretty good, and comparable to the transfer bonuses from many brokerages on the high end. If you kept $100,000 in a 0.50% APY savings account, you’d only have $500 after an entire year.

Here are the steps to earn that bonus (taken straight from their site):

  • Open a new Unifimoney account.
  • Deposit the minimum amount based on the tiers in the chart above between $1,000 and $100,000+ within 14 days of account opening.
  • To qualify, hold that same minimum amount in combined deposits/assets in the account for 30 days for Tiers 1-2 and 90 days for Tiers 3-5.
  • Your Bitcoin reward (shown in the tiers above) will be paid into your Unifimoney Crypto account within 14 days of qualifying.
  • Bitcoin Rewards are inclusive of transaction fees and calculated at the rate of Bitcoin at the time of purchase (see details in terms and conditions below)

Here is an important detail below about funding. I always fund using a push from my online savings account anyway (usually Ally Bank), but I’ve heard many complaints about push/pull from within a startup bank. At least here they tell you the limit upfront.

For single funding transactions greater than $10,000 we recommend these funds are pushed to your Unifimoney account from your existing bank either via ACH or Wire Transfer. Funding transactions initiated within the app are restricted to a maximum $10,000.

Sign-up process details. You will need to have the following things handy at account opening:

  • Cell phone number
  • US Citizens: Photo ID and SSN. Non-US Citizens: Passport and SSN.
  • Address listed on Photo ID should match your current mailing address.
  • Account and routing number for funding bank account. You’ll need to fund with at least $100 initially, and you can add the rest to reach your desired bonus tier above within the next 14 days.

Tip: If you are deep into the account opening process and go off to find your photo ID and your phone goes to “sleep”, it will look like you have to start everything over again. Simply tap on “Login” and type in your phone number, and it should let you resume the application from where you left off.

Bottom line. Unifimoney is an ambitious new fintech with a banking/credit card/stock trading/portfolio management/crypto/gold all rolled into one app. They have a new user bonus of up to $1000 in Bitcoin, depending on how much you deposit. I’ll update this review after I have a chance to play around with the various parts.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Best Interest Rates on Cash – Monthly Update June 2021

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Here’s my monthly roundup of the best interest rates on cash as of June 2021, roughly sorted from shortest to longest maturities. I try to find lesser-known opportunities to improve your yield while keeping your principal FDIC-insured or equivalent. Check out my Ultimate Rate-Chaser Calculator to see how much extra interest you’d earn by moving money between accounts. Rates listed are available to everyone nationwide. Rates checked as of 6/2/2021.

Fintech accounts
Available only to individual investors, fintech companies oftentimes pay higher-than-market rates in order to achieve fast short-term growth (often using venture capital). I define “fintech” as a software layer on top of a different bank’s FDIC insurance. These do NOT require a certain number debit card purchases per month. Although I do use some of these after doing my own due diligence, read about the Beam app for potential pitfalls and best practices.

  • 3% APY on up to $100,000. The top rate is 3% APY for April through June 2021, and they have not indicated any upcoming rate drop. HM Bradley requires a recurring direct deposit every month and a savings rate of at least 20%. See my HM Bradley review.
  • 3% APY on 10% of direct deposits + 1% APY on $25,000. One Finance lets you earn 3% APY on “auto-save” deposits (up to 10% of your direct deposit, up to $1,000 per month). Separately, they also pay 1% APY on up to another $25,000 with direct deposit. New customer $50 bonus via referral. See my One Finance review.
  • 3% APY on up to $15,000. Porte requires a one-time direct deposit of $1,000+ to open a savings account. New customer $50 bonus via referral. See my Porte review.
  • 1.20% APY on up to $50,000. OnJuno recently updated their rate tiers, while keeping their promise to existing customers a grandfathered rate. If you don’t maintain a $500 direct deposit each month, you’ll still earn 1.20% on up to $5k. See my updated OnJuno review.

High-yield savings accounts
While the huge megabanks pay essentially no interest, it’s easy to open a new “piggy-back” savings account and simply move some funds over from your existing checking account. The interest rates on savings accounts can drop at any time, so I list the top rates as well as competitive rates from banks with a history of competitive rates. Some banks will bait you with a temporary top rate and then lower the rates in the hopes that you are too lazy to leave.

  • T-Mobile Money is still at 1.00% APY with no minimum balance requirements. The main focus is on the 4% APY on your first $3,000 of balances as a qualifying T-mobile customer plus other hoops, but the lesser-known perk is the 1% APY for everyone. Thanks to the readers who helped me understand this. There are several other established high-yield savings accounts at closer to 0.50% APY.

Short-term guaranteed rates (1 year and under)
A common question is what to do with a big pile of cash that you’re waiting to deploy shortly (just sold your house, just sold your business, legal settlement, inheritance). My usual advice is to keep things simple and take your time. If not a savings account, then put it in a flexible short-term CD under the FDIC limits until you have a plan.

  • No Penalty CDs offer a fixed interest rate that can never go down, but you can still take out your money (once) without any fees if you want to use it elsewhere. Marcus has a 7-month No Penalty CD at 0.45% APY with a $500 minimum deposit. AARP members can get an 8-month CD at 0.55% APY. Ally Bank has a 11-month No Penalty CD at 0.50% APY for all balance tiers. CIT Bank has a 11-month No Penalty CD at 0.30% APY with a $1,000 minimum deposit. You may wish to open multiple CDs in smaller increments for more flexibility.
  • Lafayette Federal Credit Union has a 12-month CD at 0.80% APY ($500 min). Early withdrawal penalty is 6 months of interest. Anyone can join this credit union via partner organization ($10 one-time fee).

Money market mutual funds + Ultra-short bond ETFs
Many brokerage firms that pay out very little interest on their default cash sweep funds (and keep the difference for themselves). Unfortunately, money market fund rates are very low across the board right now. Ultra-short bond funds are another possible alternative, but they are NOT FDIC-insured and may experience short-term losses at times. These numbers are just for reference, not a recommendation.

  • The default sweep option is the Vanguard Federal Money Market Fund which has an SEC yield of 0.01%. Vanguard Cash Reserves Federal Money Market Fund (formerly Prime Money Market) currently pays 0.01% SEC yield.
  • Vanguard Ultra-Short-Term Bond Fund currently pays 0.31% SEC yield ($3,000 min) and 0.41% SEC Yield ($50,000 min). The average duration is ~1 year, so your principal may vary a little bit.
  • The PIMCO Enhanced Short Maturity Active Bond ETF (MINT) has a 0.24% SEC yield and the iShares Short Maturity Bond ETF (NEAR) has a 0.36% SEC yield while holding a portfolio of investment-grade bonds with an average duration of ~6 months.

Treasury Bills and Ultra-short Treasury ETFs
Another option is to buy individual Treasury bills which come in a variety of maturities from 4-weeks to 52-weeks. You can also invest in ETFs that hold a rotating basket of short-term Treasury Bills for you, while charging a small management fee for doing so. T-bill interest is exempt from state and local income taxes. Right now, this section isn’t very interesting as T-Bills are yielding close to zero!

  • You can build your own T-Bill ladder at TreasuryDirect.gov or via a brokerage account with a bond desk like Vanguard and Fidelity. Here are the current Treasury Bill rates. As of 6/2/2021, a new 4-week T-Bill had the equivalent of 0.01% annualized interest and a 52-week T-Bill had the equivalent of 0.05% annualized interest.
  • The Goldman Sachs Access Treasury 0-1 Year ETF (GBIL) has a -0.08% SEC yield and the SPDR Bloomberg Barclays 1-3 Month T-Bill ETF (BIL) has a -0.12% (!) SEC yield. GBIL appears to have a slightly longer average maturity than BIL.

US Savings Bonds
Series I Savings Bonds offer rates that are linked to inflation and backed by the US government. You must hold them for at least a year. If you redeem them within 5 years there is a penalty of the last 3 months of interest. The annual purchase limit is $10,000 per Social Security Number, available online at TreasuryDirect.gov. You can also buy an additional $5,000 in paper I bonds using your tax refund with IRS Form 8888.

  • “I Bonds” bought between May 2021 and October 2021 will earn a 3.54% rate for the first six months. The rate of the subsequent 6-month period will be based on inflation again. More info here.
  • In mid-October 2021, the CPI will be announced and you will have a short period where you will have a very close estimate of the rate for the next 12 months. I will have another post up at that time.
  • See below about EE Bonds as a potential long-term bond alternative.

Prepaid Cards with Attached Savings Accounts
A small subset of prepaid debit cards have an “attached” FDIC-insured savings account with exceptionally high interest rates. The negatives are that balances are severely capped, and there are many fees that you must be careful to avoid (lest they eat up your interest). There is a long list of previous offers that have already disappeared with little notice. I don’t personally recommend nor use any of these anymore, as I feel the work required and risk of messing up exceeds any small potential benefit.

  • Mango Money pays 6% APY on up to $2,500, if you manage to jump through several hoops. Requirements include $1,500+ in “signature” purchases and a minimum balance of $25.00 at the end of the month.

Rewards checking accounts
These unique checking accounts pay above-average interest rates, but with unique risks. You have to jump through certain hoops which usually involve 10+ debit card purchases each cycle, a certain number of ACH/direct deposits, and/or a certain number of logins per month. If you make a mistake (or they judge that you did) you risk earning zero interest for that month. Some folks don’t mind the extra work and attention required, while others would rather not bother. Rates can also drop suddenly, leaving a “bait-and-switch” feeling.

  • The Bank of Denver pays 2.00% APY on up to $25,000 if you make 12 debit card purchases of $5+ each, receive only online statements, and make at least 1 ACH credit or debit transaction per statement cycle. The rate recently dropped. If you meet those qualifications, you can also link a Kasasa savings account that pays 1.00% APY on up to $50k. Thanks to reader Bill for the updated info.
  • Devon Bank has a Kasasa Checking paying 2.50% APY on up to $10,000, plus a Kasasa savings account paying 2.50% APY on up to $10,000 (and 0.85% APY on up to $50,000). You’ll need at least 12 debit transactions of $3+ and other requirements every month.
  • Presidential Bank pays 2.25% APY on balances up to $25,000, if you maintain a $500+ direct deposit and at least 7 electronic withdrawals per month (ATM, POS, ACH and Billpay counts).
  • Evansville Teachers Federal Credit Union pays 3.30% APY on up to $20,000. You’ll need at least 15 debit transactions and other requirements every month.
  • Lake Michigan Credit Union pays 3.00% APY on up to $15,000. You’ll need at least 10 debit transactions and other requirements every month.
  • Find a locally-restricted rewards checking account at DepositAccounts.

Certificates of deposit (greater than 1 year)
CDs offer higher rates, but come with an early withdrawal penalty. By finding a bank CD with a reasonable early withdrawal penalty, you can enjoy higher rates but maintain access in a true emergency. Alternatively, consider building a CD ladder of different maturity lengths (ex. 1/2/3/4/5-years) such that you have access to part of the ladder each year, but your blended interest rate is higher than a savings account. When one CD matures, use that money to buy another 5-year CD to keep the ladder going. Some CDs also offer “add-ons” where you can deposit more funds if rates drop.

  • NASA Federal Credit Union has a special 49-month Share Certificate at 1.40% APY ($10,000 min). Early withdrawal penalty is 1 year of interest. Anyone can join this credit union by joining the National Space Society (free). Note that NASA FCU may perform a hard credit check as part of new member application.
  • Abound Credit Union has a 59-month Share Certificate at 1.30% APY ($500 min) and a special 37-month Share Certificate at 1.15% APY ($500 min). Early withdrawal penalty is 1 year of interest (and only with the consent of the credit union, so be aware). Anyone can join this credit union via partner organization ($10 one-time fee).
  • Lafayette Federal Credit Union has a 5-year CD at 1.26% APY ($500 min). Early withdrawal penalty is 6 months of interest. Anyone can join this credit union via partner organization ($10 one-time fee).
  • You can buy certificates of deposit via the bond desks of Vanguard and Fidelity. You may need an account to see the rates. These “brokered CDs” offer FDIC insurance and easy laddering, but they don’t come with predictable early withdrawal penalties. Right now, I don’t see anything available at a 5-year maturity. Be wary of higher rates from callable CDs listed by Fidelity.

Longer-term Instruments
I’d use these with caution due to increased interest rate risk, but I still track them to see the rest of the current yield curve.

  • Willing to lock up your money for 10 years? You can buy long-term certificates of deposit via the bond desks of Vanguard and Fidelity. These “brokered CDs” offer FDIC insurance, but they don’t come with predictable early withdrawal penalties. You might find something that pays more than your other brokerage cash and Treasury options. Right now, I see a 10-year CD at 1.80% APY vs. 1.59% for a 10-year Treasury. Watch out for higher rates from callable CDs from Fidelity.
  • How about two decades? Series EE Savings Bonds are not indexed to inflation, but they have a unique guarantee that the value will double in value in 20 years, which equals a guaranteed return of 3.5% a year. However, if you don’t hold for that long, you’ll be stuck with the normal rate which is quite low (currently 0.10%). I view this as a huge early withdrawal penalty. But if holding for 20 years isn’t an issue, it can also serve as a hedge against prolonged deflation during that time. Purchase limit is $10,000 each calendar year for each Social Security Number. As of 6/2/2021, the 20-year Treasury Bond rate was 2.21%.

All rates were checked as of 6/2/2021.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

OnJuno Checking Account Review (Updated May 2021)

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Updated May 2021. OnJuno is a new fintech banking app with a competitive Bonus rate and 5% cash back on select merchants. They partner with Evolve Bank and Trust for FDIC insurance.

As of May 2021, they announced the following changes to their structure:

  • 2.15% Bonus Rate will be dropping to 1.20%. For existing users, this will not take effect until November 2021. For new users, this will take effect on May 20th, 2021.
  • Metal Tier is now free for everyone (formerly $9.99 a month).
  • Eligible balance for the Bonus Rate is increased to $50,000 (formerly $30,000).

All in all, I feel that these changes are a net improvement as the ongoing monthly fee was going to be a problem in keeping customers. A higher bonus rate doesn’t help when most or all of your earned interest was being eaten by a monthly fee. With the new structure, I can still enjoy a bonus rate that is higher (more than double) than most other online savings accounts without worrying about any fees. 1.20% times $50,000 is $600 of interest a year.

Sign-up process. The sign-up process was completed 100% online and mostly fine, although I had to spend some extra time carefully taking smartphone photos of the back and front of my driver’s license. My pictures were rejected for being too dark, too much glare, too fuzzy, etc.

Immigrant-friendly. According to this American Banker article, OnJuno intends to target Asian immigrants who like to build up savings and then remit some of it internationally to their families abroad. They have no hidden fees on sending money abroad, and you only need a Social Security number and state-issued ID to join.

Bank-to-bank transfers. OnJuno uses the Plaid service to link with external bank accounts for funding and free ACH transfers (both deposits and withdrawals). They also provide you with the full account number and routing number, which you can use to connect with other banks like Ally, Marcus, CapOne 360, etc. The routing number is 084106768 which is confirmed as that of Evolve Bank & Trust. I was able to make a deposit and withdrawal initiated at Ally without issue.

Bonus rate, not APY. You may notice that they don’t use “APY” and instead say “bonus rate”. Here’s their reason:

The Bonus Rate is offered entirely by OnJuno and is not interest provided by Evolve Bank and Trust. The bonus rate You earn will be credited to Your account at the beginning of each month. Your funds begin generating a bonus rate once they are available on Your OnJuno Checking Account. Please note that OnJuno reserves the right to cancel, remove, and change this bonus at any time. OnJuno also reserves the rights, in sole discretion, to refuse this bonus without cause, reason, and notice.

I’ve been getting my bonus rate every month without issue, but this is the first time I’ve seen this language. Your interest is still shown on a 1099-INT at the end of the year.

5% cash back merchant list. You can choose 5 from the following list of brands. No Costco (sad face).

  • Amazon, Target, Best Buy, Walmart, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+, Spotify, Headspace, Calm, Whole Foods, Walgreens, Trader Joe’s, CVS, Uber Eats, Grubhub, Postmates, Doordash, Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, Blue Bottle Coffee, In N Out, Taco Bell, Wendy’s, Chick-fil-A, Uber, Lyft, and AirBNB.

Here are my picks, as I already have the Amazon Prime credit card with 5% back at Amazon and Whole Foods.

Additional features.

  • No minimum balance requirements for either Free or Metal tiers.
  • Fee-free access to both Allpoint and Moneypass ATM networks (85,000+ locations).
  • Free debit Mastercard.

Instant virtual cards. You can create “virtual” 16-digit debit card numbers in the app, which are different than your physical card and you can “lock” them at any time. This may be useful for fraud prevention and perhaps even pesky trial offers.

Apple and Google apps. OnJuno launched their app in February 2021.

No mobile check deposit. I have installed the app, but they do not have mobile check deposit as of May 2021.

Customer service. You can contact them via phone at 415-969-5775 (9am to 6pm Pacific) or online message (they replied to me within a few hours).

Bottom line. OnJuno is a new fintech banking app with a competitive interest rate that is well above most online savings accounts, while also adding 5% cash back on select merchants. FDIC-insurance from Evolve Bank and Trust.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Big List of Car Demand Notes (GM, Ford, Toyota) & Other Non-FDIC Deposit Accounts: Up to 1.50% Interest

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Interest rates remain very low, which makes people more willing to take some risk for “just a little bit higher” interest rates. This has renewed interest in the financing arms of many automotive brands that offer “demand notes” which they use to fund the loans and leases they need to make to sell cars. (Can you imagine how much fewer new cars would be sold without financing?)

These demand notes allow you to “demand” your money back at any time, while they can also end the program at any time (as Ally recently did). Importantly, they pay a higher variable interest rate than most FDIC-insured high-yield savings accounts. Equally importantly, although it functions like a bank, it is not a bank and thus your money is not covered by FDIC insurance. You are buying unsecured debt backed by a finance company (not necessarily the actual car maker), and if it struggles, you may lose principal. Here is a list of some available options on the market:

GM Financial Right Notes

  • Current interest rate: 1.50% (as of 5/17/21)
  • Minimum initial investment: $500
  • Fitch credit rating: BBB-
  • Restricted to GM/GM Financial US employees and retirees, US employees of GM dealerships, GM customers, and GM stockholders.

The GM Financial Right NotesSM program is a direct investment in demand notes issued by General Motors Financial Company, Inc. Right Notes pay a variable rate of interest and are redeemable at any time. An investment in the Right Notes does not create a bank account or a money market fund and is not FDIC insured.

Toyota IncomeDriver Notes

  • Current interest rate: 1.35% (as of 5/17/21)
  • Minimum initial investment: $500
  • Fitch credit rating: A+

The IncomeDriver Notes® program is a direct investment in senior notes issued by Toyota Motor Credit Corporation (“TMCC”). IncomeDriver Notes® pay a variable rate of interest and are redeemable at any time. IncomeDriver Notes® are not a bank account or a money market fund and are not FDIC insured.

Mercedes-Benz First Class Notes

  • Current interest rate: 1.10% (as of 5/17/21)
  • Minimum investment: $10,000 to avoid $5 monthly fee
  • Fitch credit rating: n/a
  • Restricted to accredited investors only.

An investment in the First Class Demand Notes program does not create a FDIC insured bank account. All investments are senior, unsecured debt obligations of Mercedes-Benz Financial Services and are not insured or guaranteed by anyone else.

Ford Interest Advantage Notes

  • Current interest rate: 0.45% to 0.65% (depending on balance, as of 5/17/21)
  • Minimum investment: $1,000
  • Fitch credit rating: BB+

The Notes issued under the Ford Interest Advantage Program are unsecured debt obligations of Ford Motor Credit Company LLC. They are not insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, they are not guaranteed by Ford Motor Company, and they do not constitute a bank account.

Caterpillar PowerInvestment Notes

  • Current interest rate: 0.05% to 0.20% (depending on balance, as of 5/17/21)
  • Minimum investment: $250
  • Fitch credit rating: A

An investment in the Cat Financial PowerInvestment notes allows individuals and institutions to benefit from the financial strength of Caterpillar Financial Services Corporation. It is important to note that Cat Financial PowerInvestment is not a money market account, which is typically a diversified fund consisting of short-term debt securities of many issuers. An investment in the PowerInvestment notes does not meet the diversification and investment quality standards set forth for money market funds by the Investment Company Act of 1940.

Dominion Energy Reliability Investment Notes

  • Current interest rate: 1.25% to 1.50% (depending on balance, as of 5/17/21)
  • Minimum investment: $1,000
  • Fitch credit rating: BBB+

Dominion Energy Reliability Investment is not considered to be a deposit or other bank account, and is not subject to the protection of Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) regulation or insurance, or any other insurance. The investments are direct purchases of new debt obligations of Dominion Energy.

Duke Energy PremierNotes

  • Current interest rate: 0.45% to 0.65% (depending on balance, as of 5/17/21)
  • Minimum investment: $1,000 to avoid $10 monthly fee
  • Fitch credit rating: Withdrawn

No, the notes are not equivalent to a deposit or other bank account, and are not subject to the protection of Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) regulation or insurance, or any other insurance. The notes are direct investments in new debt obligations of Duke Energy.

Also see: WSJ article #1, WSJ article #2, Bogleheads forum discussion, Early Retirement forum discussion.

Financial advisers, however, often advise clients against tying up their money in one company. Those who rely on fixed-income payments as a form of income, such as retirees, should particularly avoid such concentration, says Larry Swedroe, chief research officer at Buckingham Strategic Wealth.

“I would want to buy a huge portfolio of hundreds of these so I wouldn’t have the idiosyncratic risk of Toyota,” he said. “The average investor buying this stuff is not going to be able to analyze the risk in each of these floating rate notes.”

My take. Given that US Treasury rates out to 1 year maturity are only paying 0.06% right now and most online savings account are paying around 0.50%, it’s easy to see how these rates can be attractive. However, not only are these notes not FDIC-insured, they are not even as safe as money market funds, which are diversified amongst multiple different investment-grade companies. With these demand notes, you are investing in the unsecured debt of a single company. I don’t feel like having to pay attention to the credit rating of a company for my cash. In 2008, Lehman Brothers’ bonds were rated AA by S&P just days before they went bankrupt. The eventual recovery rate on Lehman bonds was only about 20 cents on the dollar. Stuff happens.

In addition, bank accounts are regulated differently than securities sold through prospectus (where they detail all potential risks). For example, Regulation E provides the following consumer protection: As long as I notify the bank within a timely fashion, my liability for an unauthorized electronic fund transfers, including those arising from loss or theft of an access device, is limited to $50. Fifty bucks. These demand notes are not covered by the same consumer protections.

Finally, you have to consider all your available options. I personally have no plans to invest in any of these demand notes as with similar effort, I can get higher interest rates on my cash from FDIC-insured sources. I’m already earning 3% APY on up to $100,000 by moving over part of my direct deposit, with other additional options available. See my latest monthly interest rate roundup (future updates linked on right sidebar or in the Banking category). If the Toyota demand notes were paying over 3%, I might become interested.

Bottom line. The financial arms of major car makers (and a few energy companies) are offering higher interest rates through accounts that function like a savings account (flexible deposits and withdrawals, limited checkwriting). However, these are not FDIC-insured, but really unsecured debt involves the possible loss of principal. You have to decide if that added risk is adequately compensated by the higher interest. If you’re willing to open a new account to chase higher rates, there may be other options available that maintain FDIC insurance.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Tether Reserves Breakdown: A Clear Example of Stablecoin Risk

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Tether is the largest US dollar stablecoin in the world, with a market cap of about $58 billion. Stablecoins are supposed to be backed by an equal amount of fiat money held in a trust account. 1 USDT should be backed by $1 USD. But how do you know? Tether just released a report outlining the collateral backing its stablecoin as of 3/31/2021, and it’s…. a huge warning sign. Less than 7% is held in cash and Treasury bills, with the rest being a mix of vague commercial paper, loans to unknown entities, and honestly who-knows-what.

Alignment of interest. Keep in mind the concept of alignment of interest from David Swensen. Tether wants to seem as credible and legitimate and “NOT A SCAM” as possible. Everything they say will try to put them in the best light possible. In fact, Tether is only doing this because of a legal settlement with the New York Attorney’s General Office after being fined $18 million for lying in the past. (As recently as March 2019, Tether claimed it was backed by 100% USD cash.) Yet… this is the best they can do?

A single glance at this chart and I know that Tether is not taking my US dollar and whisking it away safely into a trust account at a regulated US bank. Instead, the people running Tether are using the collateral for their own personal gain. They are making loans, earning interest, all things that add risk while using other people’s money. Banks are allowed to do that within a highly-regulated environment. Tether is not a bank.

Liquidity risk. There is a reason why Warren Buffett only holds Treasury bills when he says “cash” and not commercial paper. When the poo hits the fan – and it will sooner or later – “cash” means you get your money out immediately and reliably. Tether will not be able to do this, given the composition of its reserves. This op-ed on the future of stablecoins covers a lot of related concerns.

As the volume and velocity of stablecoins grow, the liquidity risk, of course, will grow too. For this reason, it will become increasingly important for the banks managing stablecoin cash to be nonlending banks or perhaps liquid asset banks that ring-fence the investments in segregated, bankruptcy-remote accounts — and, again, invest the assets backing stablecoin deposit liabilities in 100 percent risk-free, short-term, and liquid assets. Indeed, one reason why Wyoming chose its Special Purpose Depository Institution (SPDI) charter to be a nonlending charter is precisely because leverage and digital assets do not mix. Let me pause and repeat that — leverage and digital assets do not mix. Digital assets generally settle in minutes and with settlement finality, which means leveraged financial institutions that handle them could quickly find themselves in trouble if they don’t manage the liquidity risk well — digital assets move fast. So, there’s a fundamental reason why digital assets should interface with the traditional financial system via nonleveraged banks whose demand deposit liabilities are 100 percent backed by risk-free, short-term, liquid assets.

Instead of 100% risk-free, short-term, liquid assets, Tether is less than 7% risk-free, short-term, liquid assets. Commercial paper? Backed by whom exactly? Fiduciary account? At which remote offshore bank owned by a third-party? They could be pointing to a half-eaten sandwich and calling it collateral.

As a result, I would never own Tether, and if such behavior continues to be allowable, it would make me more skeptical of the other stablecoins like USD Coin (USDC) and Gemini Dollar (GUSD), even though they do claim to be fully-backed by dollar reserves in a US Bank. (Gemini and Circle are also regulated by the New York State Department of Financial Services, while Tether is not.) Regulation around stablecoins is so limited that we’ll probably have to experience some sort of major loss event before this gets addressed, just as we had to suffer deposit losses from failed banks before FDIC-insurance came around.

Having a clear stance on cryptocurrencies is tricky. On one hand, it is definitely a “Wild West” situation and there is certainly fraud and shady practices involved. On the other hand, this is how disruption works, and I don’t like anyone confidently telling me the future when nobody knows the future. I would rather try to learn about it, look for opportunities, but also remain very skeptical and careful. If you are holding a lot of Tether, possibly due to the high 8%+ interest rates available, please consider yourself warned.

Also see: Potential Risks of High Interest Stablecoin Savings Accounts

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Chase Business Complete Checking: $300 Bonus

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Run a small business? Chase Bank has a
Business Complete Checking account promotion offering a $300 bonus for new customers. You enter your e-mail address, and you should be sent a unique promo offer code for your online application. Some of the language suggests you should reside near a physical Chase branch, but the link lets you apply online. If you already have a Chase business credit card or other Chase business profile, the application can be pre-filled. Here are the requirements for the bonus:

  • Open a new Chase Business Complete Checking account with your offer code. This offer expires 10/21/2021.
  • Deposit a total of $2,000 or more in new money within 30 days of coupon enrollment and maintain a $2,000 balance for 60 days.
  • Complete 5 qualifying transactions within 90 days of coupon enrollment. Qualifying transactions include debit card purchases, Chase QuickAccept deposits, Chase QuickDeposit, ACH (Credits), wires (Credits and Debits).

Note the following fine print:

* You can receive only one new business checking account opening related bonus every two years from the last enrollment date and only one bonus per account.

Account Closing: If the checking account is closed by the customer or Chase within six months after coupon enrollment, we will deduct the bonus amount for that account at closing.

Avoid the $15 monthly service fee on Business Complete Checking when you do at least one of the following each statement period.

  • Maintain a minimum daily balance of $2,000 in your account as of the beginning of each day of the statement period; OR
  • Spend at least $2,000 in purchases (minus returns or refunds) using your Chase Ink® Business Card(s) that shares a business legal name with the Chase Business Complete Checking account, using each of their most recently completed monthly card billing period(s); OR,
  • Deposit $2,000 into your Chase Business Complete Checking account from your QuickAccept and/or other eligible Chase Merchant Services transactions at least one business day prior to the last day of your bank account statement period; OR,
  • Maintain a linked Chase Private Client Checking? account.

Sole proprietorships and single-member LLCs are eligible (see below). If the application process is similar to their business credit cards, they may ask for documentation such as Articles of Incorporation.

Note: Only privately held businesses structured as sole proprietorships, corporations or limited liability companies (LLCs) managed by a single member or manager can apply online at this time.

Bottom line. If you run a small business, Chase is offering a very solid bonus on their Complete Business checking account. You can earn a $300 cash bonus with a $2,000 deposit held for 60 days, generating 5 transactions, and maintaining a $2,000+ balance for another 4 months after that to avoid the monthly service fees.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.