Banking Blog

Monday, July 26, 2010 1:46 pm
By Jim Wang · Bankrate.com

Have you ever wondered why a high yield savings account at ING Direct or Ally Bank can pay interest rates that are 10 to 20 times more than your local brick and mortar? When your local bank offers 0.01 percent APY on your savings account and an online bank offers 1.5 percent APY, it seems

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Monday, July 26, 2010 8:00 am
By Marcie Geffner · Bankrate.com

How much does your checking account cost? Is it free? Or do you pay $5, $10 or $15 per month? The answer, according to the American Bankers Association, or ABA, isn’t zero. Nor is it between $60 and $180 per year. In fact, the ABA says, the annual cost of a checking account is actually

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Thursday, July 22, 2010 10:11 am
By Marcie Geffner · Bankrate.com

Is your bank safe and sound? Or should you be worried that your bank might fail and be taken over or sold off by the government? Few people actually lose money in bank failures, thanks to the protection of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. But a bank failure can be stressful as the bank will

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Friday, July 16, 2010 9:32 am
By Marcie Geffner · Bankrate.com

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., or FDIC, has issued a warning for banking customers: Don’t click on that link. It’s a fraud. The warning comes after “numerous reports” of fraudulent e-mail messages that appear to have been sent from the FDIC, which said it doesn’t send unsolicited messages to consumers. The subject line of the

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Wednesday, July 14, 2010 9:49 am
By Marcie Geffner · Bankrate.com

Your bank wants you to “turn off” your monthly paper-by-snail-mail statements and “turn on” online-only statements that don’t involve any paper, envelopes or postage. This switcheroo is good for the bank since it won’t have to incur the cost to print and mail out your statement every month. Of course, the online service isn’t cost-free,

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Saturday, July 10, 2010 10:30 am
By Marcie Geffner · Bankrate.com

How many bank accounts is too many? That’s a question I asked a couple of experts for a recent Bankrate.com story, “How many bank accounts do you need?” on this subject. The answer: More than one or two checking and savings accounts is probably too many for most people, setting aside the complexities of joint accounts

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Friday, July 9, 2010 3:11 pm
By Marcie Geffner · Bankrate.com

A supermarket chain in my neighborhood sells bananas for 19 cents each — or a bit more for the organic variety. A no-name doughnut shop across the street from the market sells the same bananas for 60 cents each. I’ve long harbored a suspicion that the proprietors of the doughnut shop walk across the street,

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Thursday, July 8, 2010 12:41 pm
By Marcie Geffner · Bankrate.com

As Congressional leaders continue to hammer out the final details of the Restoring American Financial Stability Act of 2010, I have to wonder whether anyone has actually read the current, and apparently soon-to-be-final, bill. After all, we’re all talking about legislation that, in the House version, is something like 1,616 pages in the PDF. That’s

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Wednesday, June 30, 2010 9:33 am
By Marcie Geffner · Bankrate.com

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., or FDIC, has closed 86 U.S. banks this year, three in the last full week of June. The biggest and most costly failures naturally get the most attention. Here, in Los Angeles, one biggie that failed earlier this year was First Regional Bank, which cost the Deposit Insurance Fund a

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Tuesday, June 29, 2010 9:33 am
By Marcie Geffner · Bankrate.com

It’s official — almost. Both the U.S. House and Senate have passed different versions of a sweeping financial reform bill that contains a hodge-podge of new regulations on everything from consumer protection and stated-income mortgages to derivatives and ratings agencies. Having followed the back and forth debate with interest, I can tell you that the

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