The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida on March 30, 1998 · Page 62
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March 30, 1998

A Publisher Extra Newspaper

The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida · Page 62

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West Palm Beach, Florida
Issue Date:
Monday, March 30, 1998
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Page 62
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10. THE, PALM BEACH,POST-; ( MARCH, 30, ,1998, PERSbfltfjANCE When switching banks, take some steps to make it painless Highest nationwide yields as of Mar. 24 Accounts are federally insured up to $100,000 per person. Yields are based on method of compounding and rate stated for the lowest minimum deposit. CD figures are for fixed rates only. Low minimum CDs M Institutionarea Comp Ani Ag MUM Phone Mn. Rate Mtnd Yld Vld Treasury Bank (800)882-2868 2500 5.60 CM 5.75 Washington, DC First Market Bank (800)968-3824 10000 5.60 CM 5.75 Memphis, TN Bluebonnet Savings (800)892-6151 5000 5.55 CM 5.69 Dallas, TX M&T Bank, NA (800)52&6532 5000 5.46 CD 5.61 Buffalo, NY Providian National Bk (800)414-9692 5000 5.45 CD 5.60 Concord, NH 6-month CD Atlanta internet Bank (888)256-6932 1000 5.78 CD 5.95 Alpharetta, GA Safra National Bank (800)223-2311 10000 5.75 CD 5.92 New York, NY Security First NetwkBk (800)736-2321 1500 5.73 CD 5.90 Atlanta, GA ' Southern Pacific Bk (800)428-5056 5000 5.70 CD 5.87 Los Angeles, CA . Imperial T&L (800)927-2442 2000 5.69 CD 5.85 Gtendate, CA 1-year CD Atlanta Internet Bank (888)25&6932 - 1000 5.88 CD 6.05 Alpharetta, GA Security First Netwk Bk (800)736-2321 1500 5.83 CD 6.00 Atlanta. GA First Trade Union Svg (800)242-0272 10000 5.77 CM 5.93 Boston, MA Southern Pacific Bk (800)428-5056 . 5000 5.75 CD 5.92 Los Angeles, CA Arkansas Natl Bank (501)271-2800 10000 5.77 CQ 5.90 Bentonville, AR 2.5-year CD Atlanta Internet Bank (888)2566932 1000 5.92 CD 6.10 6.38 Alpharetta. GA Captl One Fed Svg Bk (800)564-7426 2500 5.86 CD 6.03 6.31 Glen Allen, VA Providian National Bk (800)414-9692 10CCO 5.86 CD 6.03 6.31 Concord. NH Southern Pacific Bk (800)42&5056 5000 5.85 CD 6.02 6.30 Los Angeles, CA First Community Bank (888)831-3620 5000 5.87 CQ 6.00 6.27 Columbus. OH 5-year CO Washington Svgs Bk (800)848-5990 500 625 CQ 6.40 7.27 Bowie, MD Captl One Fed Svg Bk (800)564-7426 2500 6.09 CD 6.28 7.12 Glen Allen, VA Arkansas Natl Bank (501)2712800 10000 6.12 CQ 6.26 7.10 Bentonville, AR Key Bank USA (800)8725553 5000 6.00 CD 6.18 7.00 Albany. NY Eastern Svgs Bank (8O0)787ANK 1000 6.00 CM 6.17 6.98 Bank Rate Monitor How to open a high-yielding account: You see a high yield from an out-of-town bank listed in the newspaper. You're ready to deposit your money, but aren't sure what steps to follow so that you money gets in the account safely and at the yield you want. What steps should you take? There aren't that many, and if you follow this set of instructions, opening an account should be easy. 1) First call the institution. Many out-of-town institutions have toll-free numbers. You can get that number by calling the toll-free operator at (800) 555-1212. 2) Ask for the person who supervises personal accounts. , Some institutions have a "national desk" just for out-of-town customers. 3) Explain how much you have to invest, and the account you are interested in. 4) Ask for the latest interest rate and annual percentage yield. The numbers can change any day. Make sure you have the latest quote. 5) Ask when your interest earnings will begin, and how many days after opening an MMA you can withdraw funds. It will take several days for an out-of-town check to clear. 6) Ask for an account form for you CD or MMA. When it arrives, make a copy of all documents, in particular the signature card. That card is your definitive proof of ownership should the institution fail. If you open an account by mail: 1) Make you check payable to the institution, not an individual, and endorse it "for deposit only." 2) If the institution does not provide account-opening documents, draft a letter specifying how much you are depositing, the account type (and term if its a CD), the account number, rate and yield, and check amount. 3) Include your name, address and phone number(s) at which you can be reached. Questions to ask before opening an account: What is the interest rate the rate before compounding on the account What is the compounding method? Are there different yields for different deposit amounts? Will I be charged a fee on an MMA if if fc,don't keep a minimum balance? Is there a fee to close and MMA in a certain period of time? Is there more than one version of this account? What is the penalty for withdrawing funds from my CD before it matures? What is your policy on CD rollovers? How many days do I have before my CD automatically rolls over? Pleas see UM 12 et's pretend you've decided to kiss your financial 1 institution goodbye. You're so ticked at Megabuck Bank that you're going to pull out everything passbook and Money Market Accounts, credit cards and other loans and hand the business to Friendly Federal. How do you move your money? The wrong way is to assume that Megabuck knows everything you're up to and will automatically close out your accounts without the proper instructions in writing. The right way is to button up all the details between the old bank and your new one, so nothing is left hanging. But be careful; not all institutions will handle the switch in exactly the same way. My observation: Year after year, millions of people stupidly stick with the same old outfits out of loyalty, habit or "convenience." As a result, they get skewered by too-low savings rates and too-high loan rates and ridiculous fees. With just a couple of phone calls and a teensy bit of paperwork, they could be hundreds of dollars ahead one year from now. Here are some basics to remember as you bid sayonara to Megabuck: When you switch checking accounts, don't just write out a check for your exact balance at Megabuck and deposit it in Friendly Federal. Always send Megabuck a letter and keep a copy. In the letter, give your name, address, daytime phone number, account number and Social Security number, and say you're closing the account immediately. Cut up and return all of Megabuck 's ATM cards. Other options are to ask your old bank to issue you a check for the remaining balance, or (if the amount is $5,000 or greater) to wire the funds to the new bank. Problem with the latter route is that Megabuck and maybe Friendly Federal, as well will nick you about $15 for the wire charge. It's perfectly OK to handle everything by mail, which is especially common when you do business with a high -paying, out-of-state bank or thrift. You call the toll-free 800 number and ask them to send you account-open ing documents. Or, you can start the baJJ rolling faster by establishing a new account over the phone, with a temporary account number, and follow up with the paperwork. In those cases, the bank may et t vour authorization to contact Robert K. Heady count. Wired money usually gets credited the same day, a cashier's check on the following day, while personal checks may take up to five or six days depending on the state where you live. It's more likely, though, that the new bank will ask you to close out the old accounts yourself and send a check or wired money as your opening deposit. If so, watch those wire charges! Switching your credit card account involves a slightly different ballgame, but I know of no more important account to change if you're paying an interest rate that's higher than 15 percent. There are cards out there as low as 7.9 percent for a six-month introductory period, after which the rate goes to 11.4 percent (AFBA Industrial Bank, Colorado Springs. Colo., at 800-776-2265). The new card bank will take your info over the phone and mail you a formal application to sign, along with authorization for them to pay off the old card issuer and transfer the balance owed to the new bank. Or, institutions such as Key Bank USA, in Albany, N.Y. (800-872-5553), will issue you "convenience checks." You can use these to pay off several loans at other outfits and move all the debts to one Key Bank credit card account The rate can be as low as 10.9 percent depending on payment history. MBNA America, Wilmington, Del. (800-577-3556) gives you a choice: It'll pay off the old credit card company, or let you do it Before you jump to a new card issuer, however, be sure to ask these questions: For how long is the rate good? What's the rate after that period? Does the new rate apply only to your old balance, or to new purchases as well? What rate will you pay on cash advances? WTiat are the annual fee and grace period? The late-payment fee? The over-limit fee? Biggest tip of all: Never fail to tell your old credit card bank in writing that you're closing the account As a going-away gift be sure to enclose your old credit cards sliced in two so the bank will really get the message. B Rohrrt K, Utadv is the found- FuHerton, MD Annual percentage yield for first year. Average annual yield over entire lite of investment although institution may advertise only annual percentage yield tar first year. Star safety ratings 13 stars the highest) by venbanc. Inc. $100,000 Jumbo CDs Institutionarea Bluebonnet Savings Dallas, TX (800) 692 CO New South Fed Svg Btrmmgham, AL (800) 366 CO Hurley State Bank Sioux Fails. SO fr-month CD Atlanta Internet Bank Alpharetta. GA 1-year CO Atlanta Internet Bank (800) 767 (888) (888) 256 - 5.85 - 3030 564 - 9810 577 595 6932 605 " - 6151 2566932 i i your old Link arid Mv'e tMftJfJTW publisher ofltenk. ftqtfWw ft7TV7r . r ; J ; ey transferred to the new ac- tor. VMpharatta, GA l'.A'l:e com Man KtVl

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