7 great online banking deals

Online banking is a good bet for an extra return on the money. You can find checking accounts with yields of 2-3%, well above the average bank yield of 0.94%.

This is way above what you get at Bank of America (0.01%) or Citibank (0.1%). Likewise, you can get a return of 2.05% on your savings, much better than the bank average of 1.37%.

Online banks tend to charge lower fees than money-center financial institutions, which hit consumers with higher monthly maintenance fees, not to mention ever-increasing fees for overdrafts, balance transfers, and transactions. abroad.

Online banking can also be a good choice if you travel a lot or tend to stray from your bank’s ATM network. Most will reimburse you for using another bank’s ATMs, at least up to a certain amount.

We asked Informa Research Services to scan their database to find the best deals from online banking. Using their analysis as a starting point, we did our own research and put together the following list of favorites. Banks can change their rates at will, so double check the details before you get started.

You can compare rates on bank accounts, certificates of deposit, mortgages, and other products at Bankrate.com. If you find a rate you like but don’t know the bank, make sure it’s covered by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

BEST FOR LOW MINIMUM CHECKING: KeyDirect

You don’t have to worry about a minimum balance to earn interest on a KeyDirect checking account. A balance of less than $ 2,500 earns 1.25% and a balance of $ 5,000 gets a still competitive amount of 1.75%. High players with balances over $ 100,000 earn 2%. But beware of the monthly maintenance costs. While KeyDirect will waive the fees for the first three months for new account holders, a monthly fee of $ 15 will apply after that, unless you maintain a combined balance of $ 10,000.

Amount to open account: $ 50Minimum to earn interest: NothingSavings rate: 1.4%Minimum to avoid maintenance costs: Combined balance of $ 10,000; otherwise the monthly fee is $ 15Refund of ATM withdrawals: $ 12 per month

BEST FOR CHECKING AT HIGH MINIMUM: EverBank

EverBank offers a 3% return on new checking accounts. The catch: the bank promises this rate for only three months, after which it may not revert to the current rate. For those with accounts holding less than $ 10,000, the current rate is 1.52% for the first year. However, EverBank is committed to keeping its returns within 5% higher than those surveyed by Bankrate.com.

Amount to open account: $ 1,500Minimum to earn interest: NothingSavings rate: 2%Minimum to avoid maintenance costs: None, unless you are using online bill payment. If you do, you must maintain a balance of $ 5,000 or pay a fee of $ 8.95.Refund of ATM withdrawals: $ 6 per month if you maintain a balance of $ 5,000

BEST FOR SAVINGS: Allied bank

Ally Bank, the former GMAC Financial Services, offers high savings rates to attract businesses. It also has penalty free CDs, which allow you to withdraw money without paying any fees. It doesn’t offer checking accounts, but you can withdraw money from your savings at an ATM.

Amount to open account: No minimumMinimum to earn interest: NothingSavings rate: 2.05%Minimum to avoid maintenance costs: NothingRefund of ATM withdrawals: $ 6 per month

BEST FOR LOW FEES (TIE): ING Direct

You don’t need to read the fine print at ING – there are no account maintenance fees, period, for its current accounts. ING currently has an Electric Orange account which offers a return of 1.65% to those with $ 100,000 or more. A $ 50,000 to $ 100,000 account gets 1.6%, but balances under $ 50,000 only earns 0.25%. You get a $ 25 bonus for opening an Electric Orange account and using the debit card.

Amount to open account: No minimumMinimum to earn interest: NothingSavings rate: 1.5%Minimum to avoid maintenance costs: NothingRefund of ATM withdrawals: None, but it has over 32,000 ATMs in its network (see below)

BEST FOR LOW FEES (TIE): Salem five direct

Salem does not require a minimum balance for its high interest eOne account, and you are also not required to pay a maintenance fee. Plus, you’ll earn 1.4% on balances under $ 50,000. If you sign up for direct deposit you get a one-time bonus of $ 25.

Amount to open account: $ 100Minimum to earn interest: NothingSavings rate: 1.4%Minimum to avoid maintenance costs: NothingRefund of ATM withdrawals: $ 15 per month

BEST FOR ATM NETWORK: ING Direct

ING Direct is a member of the Allpoint network, which has 32,000 vending machines, and you pay no fees for using Allpoint vending machines. If you leave the network, ING will not charge any fees, unlike other banks. And it does not reimburse the fees of other banks.

Amount to open account: No minimumMinimum to earn interest: NothingSavings rate: 1.5%Minimum to avoid maintenance costs: NothingRefund of ATM withdrawals: None, but it has over 32,000 ATMs in its network

BEST FOR ATM REFUNDS: Salem five direct

Salem will reimburse you up to $ 15 per month for other bank ATM fees.

Amount to open account: $ 100Minimum to earn interest: NothingSavings rate: 1.4%Minimum to avoid maintenance costs: NothingRefund of ATM withdrawals: $ 15 per month


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David A. Albanese