Protect Yourself When Shopping Online

steal-cc.jpg Shopping online is the greatest thing to come along since canned beer but there are some risks involved. We’ve all heard the horror stories about people’s credit card information being stolen and orders never fulfilled. Fortunately, these are isolated problems for the most part and we can take steps to ensure satisfaction when we do our shopping over the internet. Here are five tips to keep in mind the next time you’re ready to pull the trigger on an online purchase:

1. Make sure the internet connection is safe and secure.
If the web site where you are entering your credit card information begins with “http” or “https” then you’re going to be in good shape. These sites automatically use Secure Sockets Layer which is a service that encrypts credit card information. If you’re using a site that doesn’t begin with either of those sets of letters than you should wait to see a pop-up indicating that the site uses SSL. If you don’t get either of these indicators then take your business elsewhere.

2. Know the seller.
If you’re considering buying something but you have never heard of the seller then you should consult the Better Business Bureau to check their reputation. A surefire way to know that you’re dealing with a shady company is if they sent you an unsolicited email. These are companies with a bad reputation for scamming customers.

3. Be sure you’re getting the latest update on your purchase order.
Many companies will be slow to update their online catalogues. Use your refresh button or even call the company if you believe there is an updated price on the item you’re looking to buy that’s cheaper than the one advertised.

4. Investigate before you purchase.
Make sure that you know exactly what you’re buying. If you go ahead and purchase something and you receive something totally different than what you were looking for you will be sad when you find out there’s very little you can do.
5. Print out your receipt. This is a crucial step for the online shopper. Many of us will skip that last step on the screen where it tells us to print out our receipts. Even if you don’t print it out you should at least email it to yourself. In the digital world of shopping this may be your only way to lay claim to a product or service that wasn’t delivered and you want your money back.

What are Checking Accounts?

A checking account is a type of money account provided by banks and other financial institutions to empower businesses and individuals. Since the modernization of banks and evolution of financial tools, checks have been the first faculties of transactions between businesses. Checking accounts allow account holder to deposit or withdraw money via checks instead of cash. Like a personal saving account, checking accounts are easily accessible. The difference of a checking account from a basic savings account is the ability of the account holder to issue checks.

Checks are used to advance a payment instead of using cash. The account holder is given a checkbook which contains all the checks that he needs to operate his account. The account holder can submit these checks to establishments or the paid party to be redeemed in the bank. The bank then debits the amount written in the check against the assets of the account. Checks are used in larger transactions such as payment of rent, paying for a service where cash is too large to give out, and to advance a payment to a given date. Checks allow consumers to expand their transactions that were once limited to cash transactions. Businesses also rely on checks for their accounting since it serves as a record of there cash flow.

Account owners must be responsible for the amount that he writes on the check. The total amount given out should tally with the value of the account or else the bank can issue a penalty or close the account. For businesses, checking accounts cannot be closed because it is the money pipeline for their expenses and contracts to suppliers. All small startups must consider a checking account if they are to grow and prosper since it clears up a business’ accounting. Without a checking account, operating a business or managing your home will be difficult.

Indymac Bank Shut Down

indymac.jpgFederal regulation committee, OTS, has deemed Indymac to be an unsafe and unsound financial institution. Consequently, operations have been handed over the FDIC officials, who will work on liquidating the assets and returning money to account holders who are FDIC insured.

More details can be found at Indymac Federal Bank.

Prevent Foreclosure By Changing Your Lifestyle

foreclosure.jpg People find it hard to prevent foreclosure because there simply aren’t enough resources to pay-off dues to prevent foreclosure. But sometimes people are too overwhelmed to think that there are other ways to help solve their foreclosure problems. And one of those is by changing their lifestyle.

There are many factors that can lead to foreclosure. Most of the time, foreclosure happens because of unexpected reasons. Families who are not able to recover these unfortunate circumstances face more problems other than foreclosure. There is credit card debt, overdue bills and worse, bankruptcy.

The best solution to these problems is by adapting to current situations. If you don’t have enough money in the bank to pay for mortgage, then you need to make some. Sometimes this is difficult to do especially for families who are used to living a comfortable and extravagant lifestyle or living beyond their means.

If you are one of those people who live above their means, you need to take control of yourself now before it’s too late. Changing your lifestyle to save your home is the most important thing. You can always replace the things that you have, but a home is more difficult to invest nowadays because of the prices and interest rates.

What You Can Change Today

There are many things you can do that can help you get more money to pay-off unpaid mortgage and get back on track. If you haven’t gotten any notice yet from your lender, you can improve your paying scheme in no time. But if you have been given a notice, talk to your lender to give you a different payment plan to be able to save your home.

You need to start with yourself and your family to be able to afford in paying the unpaid dues and others.

First thing you should do is consider additional income for your household. An extra $300 per month can help ease the burden of paying the pass dues. You can delegate the older kids to take part-time jobs, you can also take a part-time or engage in a small business that requires little or no investment.

You can control the other expenses in your home such as premium subscriptions for your cable, if you have a satellite TV and internet lose it now and replace with more affordable alternatives, cut other mobile phone subscriptions and change to pre-paid.

If you have stuff in your house such as extra furniture, clothes and appliances, that are not being used but in good condition, you can sell them on eBay or hold a garage sale.

If you have 3 cars, sell 1 or 2 if you are really in bad shape financially.

As they say, too much of everything is often bad, so get rid of these extras and make money out of it to be able to pay-off dues.

Lastly, change your lifestyle overall. If you can live within your means only, you wouldn’t end up having your home foreclosed.

If you can survive foreclosure, you should be able to get back on track and re-build your credit score in 2 years or less. But be aware that getting back on your old lifestyle can result to the same problems. So try to live within your means to prevent foreclosure of your home and other financial problems.

Investing in Certificate of Deposit (CD) Accounts

As one’s assets and cash stocks increase, households and individuals have to look for financial instruments other than what is readily available and common. By diversifying the forms of funds, an individual can ensure maximum financial growth for their investment. After acquiring a savings account, getting certificates of deposit represents the next level of financial stability.

A school scholarship is a finance instrument that gives investors mid-term to long-term stability. Unlike saving accounts, certificate of deposit accounts are harder to convert. These accounts are also harder to move because it assumes that the investor applied for this option to save money. Thus, certificates of deposit are not as accessible as other savings instruments until the certificate of deposit matures. The interest on savings in certificate of deposit accounts is fixed throughout the term of the certificate of deposit. However, some banks allow individuals to hike up the interest once during the term of the investment.

Unlike a tuition, certificate of deposit accounts are secure investments, especially when compared to other savings options like mutual funds, stocks, and other private equity investments. Because of this “security,” interest rates on savings are lower compared to other instruments. At the same time, the bank may impose a fee if you remove some of your money before your CD matures. A special certificate of deposit arrangement allows you to withdraw the money from the interest earned. In this way, you can reap the benefits of the interest without debiting from the principal.

Account holders can get better interest rates if they allow a longer maturation period. Account holders with large sums of money on their certificate of deposit can also be given optimal interest rates. Certificate of deposit accounts are not just a smart alternative for other financial tools. They have become one of the primary financial tools for heavy savers.

Things You Need To Know About Credit Card Debt Services

debt.jpg Going in debt is an unavoidable situation but there is always a solution that people can use to recover from it, and one way is to seek assistance from credit card debt services. These services are designed to provide solutions to help people recover and become debt free.

Debt relief strategies such as going out for debt services can dramatically improve your credit record. But be aware that it does take time to pay and erase a bad record from your credit report.

You can find online credit card debt services that may or may not offer free services. You can choose which debt service to avail as long it is a legitimate and safe one. These debt services can help you apply for loans that can be used to pay-off your debt.

You can get free advice from debt services especially with regards to managing your finances and how to pay-off debt the easiest way. Take advantage of these free services before you decide on what to do next so you will be equipped with information that could also help you in your financial future.

Another credit card debt relief service is a debt consolidation firm that can actually negotiate to creditors regarding your current debt. You can lower your monthly payments and interest rates with the help of these firms. But do take note that these firms will charge a fair amount. Some firms would charge higher than the others, so be careful in choosing the real deal from the bogus ones.

Why Opt For Debt Services?

There are many reasons why people avail help from credit card debt services.

• The top reason why people seek debt services is due to high cost of monthly payments and interest rates. The solution here is to consolidate debt to be able to pay a lower monthly payment at low interests.

• The need to recover debt and not to file for bankruptcy is the next reason. Who would want to be bankrupt and forever suffer the consequences of going in debt? People who are deep into debt will rather go to debt services to save their credit reports even if it takes years to do so.

• Debt services with good reputations are reported to have helped and turned their clients’ lives around after months/years of fixing their debt issues. A good debt service will focus on their client’s debt relief strategy and how they can maintain a debt free life.

• Financial advice is another reason for seeking debt services. Being prone to financial mistakes can be a disastrous fact for some people. Seeking advice from debt services, especially during the onset of the problem, can be beneficial. Handling credit cards, interest rates and maintenance of good credit record are just a few advices one can get from a good debt service.

There more reasons to seek credit card debt services. Each person has his/her own unique situation and this can be addressed by debt services that specialize in this field. If you are having debt issues right now, try to seek a debt service to fix your debt problems right away.

Benefit From Certificate Of Deposit Interest Rates

You can take advantage of the certificate of deposit interest rates. Certainly you can benefit from the interests that your account will accumulate over time.

• There are ways to benefit from certificate of deposit interest rates, and one of which is to find the best possible rates available before locking in your funds with a local bank. This way, you are ensuring your profits before hand while looking at all possible options you can have.

• Another way to benefit from CD rates is to combine your account if you have more than one CD account in the bank. You may have 2 CD accounts but one has a lower interest rate locked in. You may prematurely withdraw your low-rate CD account to incorporate into the other account. You should ask your bank with this decision before anything else. Discuss with the bank the consequences of doing so.

• No matter what you do, do not withdraw your funds prior to the maturity date. The penalties you will be paying in doing so will only put the interest into waste.

• Know the rules and regulations about CD interest rates. Upon your application for CD account, you can ask about these policies from your local bank. Take the time to go through the policy and other paperwork before deciding and depositing your money.

• Scout for the best bank that offers high interest rates on CD’s. You can go online or offline during this process, but make sure to look for legitimate banks that offer legitimate rates as well.

• Avoid offers from brokers or getting a brokered CD. If you want to maximize on your CD’s interest, you should deposit your money directly to the bank and talk to the bank’s representative instead of letting a third party do the work for you. You will be charged for the services and some may even get a percentage from your profits.

• Understand the mechanics of maturity date. If you do not fully understand this crucial factor in CD investing, you should approach your local bank and ask their assistance.

A better understanding of the maturity date of your CD account will help your money to profit over time. It will also help you understand that time is always a crucial factor in investing money in any type of investment platform.

You can surely benefit from certificate of deposit interests as long as you know when and where to scout for banks or financial institutions. The key to finding the best offers is to do this prior to signing and depositing your money.

You should also check with banks regarding the minimum investment amount. Although time and interest rates play important roles in the profit-making process of a CD account, you should also consider the amount of money your will be investing in.

There are many other ways to benefit from certificate of deposit interests. The key is timing to everything and every decision you will make that involves your money. Do not rush and make hasty decisions to be able to get the full benefits from certificate of deposit interest.

Make Your Checking Account Work For You

If you are a typical checking account holder, you may not realize that there are effective ways to make your checking account work for you. Most of the time, some checking account owners do not use the obvious factors to their advantage, which in return causes pitfalls and costly mistakes.

The need for a checking account comes down to two main reasons: for business and for personal usage. But whichever reason you have for getting a checking account, it is vital that you know how to properly handle the account to be able to reap the benefits.

There are no special instructions or existing client-friendly system that can help you make your checking account work for you. You can, however, use the existing factors of having a checking account work to your advantage.

Some Tips To Help You Make It

There are many techniques to help you make your checking account work for you. The following are the simplest and more practical applications that you can do:

• If keeping your existing checking account causes you to spend more dollars, you might as well look for a bank that charges lower fees. You may also find free checking accounts online, but be wary of free offers that do not last long.

• Most clients end up in spending more on maintenance fees due to insufficient funds on their checking accounts. And with it come the penalties caused by bouncing checks. The penalties can deplete your checking account funds, so be careful not to let this happen.

You can manage and avoid a bouncing check by making it a habit of balancing your checkbook on a weekly or monthly basis. By doing so you are keeping your checking account in shape and your credit score in good position.

• Write post-dated checks if you are unsure of your funds. You may ask your bank to provide you a checking account guard or any system that can help your funds.

• If you can get hold of a high interest checking account, provided that your practice a good checking account management, you will find it is beneficial in the long run.

• If you have an ATM for your checking account, make sure that you withdraw only from the same bank name; otherwise you will be paying off the fees for withdrawing from another bank.

You need to be careful of ATM withdrawal fees since they can also deplete your funds. The more often you use your ATM on other banks, the more fees you will incur.

Select the bank that does not charge fees when withdrawn with an ATM from another bank.

• Some people opt to separate their savings from their checking accounts while others prefer a combined account. Whichever you choose, you need to understand that your accounts will work better if you know how to handle both.

You can ask your bank if they have a facility that will work best for both your checking and savings account if you plan to separate or combine them.

You can make your checking account work for you with other practical ways you can think of. Just make sure to talk to your bank about the strategies you are planning to put up. Work with your bank to make your checking account work to your advantage.

Opening a Savings Account for Your Kids

For parents who are planning to put up a kid’s savings account, it is best to start while your kids are still young or as early as possible. If you have younger kids, toddlers even, you can start as early as now to secure funds for their future needs.

Nurses needs are important and they play a huge role in the lives of parents and grandparents as well. It is advisable to have their financial future set properly and it should be an important lesson to them as well.

If you are thinking of putting up saving account on top of your kids’ college fund, it is considered more secure than just having one of either. Think about the emergency needs that might arise during the course of your children’s school years, of course you wouldn’t want to spend their college fund for those situations. Those situations that are uncalled for will benefit from your kids’ savings accounts whenever there’s a need.

Kids’ Savings Accounts – There are Benefits for You too…

• Let us not forget that securing future funds should be a continuous process. As mentioned earlier, it is best to start early or while your kids are still young. When it is time for them to put money into their savings accounts, they will have a clear understanding of why and how it will help them financially in the future.

• The fact that you are setting a good example by setting up your kids’ savings account is a great lesson to instill in your children’s minds. You are not only teaching them the value of saving money, but the value of responsibility.

• Kids’ saving accounts can help during financial crisis and emergencies. If you have 3 kids, for example, and each has his/her own savings account, any uncalled for situations that will need funding can be easily funded using one of your child’s accounts.

However, here’s the catch, you need to replenish the entire amount you borrowed because it is also considered as a financial safety net for your child.

Points To Ponder

While your child is still young, you will need to be there whenever your child will deposit money into his/her account. All banks require an adult guidance particularly for younger children.

When your child is capable of understanding the value of money, make sure that he/she understands how to maintain and keep it growing until he/she is already an adult. Poorly managed kids’ savings account is a bad example of financial mismanagement.

As much as possible, show your children a good example of handling your own finances. Remember that as parents, you should be setting good examples to your children, and that also includes the art of managing money.
Kids’ savings accounts are quite beneficial for both parents and children in terms of the ease in paying off education-related expenses. You can add their savings to their college funds in the future to lessen the burdens of college tuition and other fees.

Get your child a savings account as early as possible. Start with a small deposit and continuously add month after month, as your monthly budget permits. Through kids’ savings accounts, parents can teach their children the importance of saving for the future and taking responsibility over their financials.

Evergreen Private Bank 5 Month Certificate of Deposit

Evergreen Private Bank is listing two very competitive Certificate of Deposit rates. These include a 4.25% APY 5-month CD and 4.15% 12 month CD. The minimum desposit to open is $10,000. Either new money or additional account relationships are required. The rate table is dated at 2/8/2008 but the rates are effective as of today.

New customers are required to visit a branch to open the account. Branches are located in Oak Brook which is in the suburbs of Chicago. The bank has been FDIC insured since 1934 (Certificate # 35230).

Bank of America $100 Bonus Checking Account

Bank of America is offering a $100 Bonus when you open a business checking account with Visa Business Check Card before March 31, 2008. There are no minimum deposit requirements and no monthly fees.

To get the $100 Bonus:

If you are applying online, you must enter promotional code BTB0100 to ensure you receive the correct bonus. A branch visit is another sign up option, you must however provide the coupon to receive the bonus.

Once the account is open, your $100 bonus will be automatically deposited into your business checking within 60 days. Closing the account within that time period will void the promotional bonus.

National City Bank 5.00% CD Accounts

National City Bank is offering a 5.00% APY 48 month or 54 month CD special and will last through March 15, 2008. The minimum deposit to open is $10,000. You can also settle for a lower 4.80% APY for a deposit under $10,000.

To qualify for this CD, you must have an existing National City National City checking or savings account, or you must open a new checking, money market, or savings account with a opening balance of $1,500. It lists at the bottom of the sign up page that free checking account doesn’t qualify which means there is a $10 monthly maintenance fee.

Application can be done online, or over the phone. If you choose to sign up by phone, National City Bank will sent you a signature card which you must sign and mail in with a check to fund the account. See more bank cd rates at this site.

Alliant Credit Union 5.90% Jumbo CD Account

Alliant Credit Union is offering a 4.90% APY Jumbo CD rate with very flexible terms of 12 to 17 months. The minimum deposit for this rate is $25,000.

Opening a CD Account:

You are required to become a member with Alliant Credit Union by opening a primary savings account with Alliant Credit Union first before you can open a CD account. The funds for the CD will be transfered over from the savings account. Alliant Credit Union doesn’t have the ability to initiate fund transfers online, you must initiate it from the source of your funds.
# The CD account application can be done through Alliant Credit Union’s online banking program SkyBranch. You can access the sign up page with your membership account number and access code, it’s under “open new accounts”.
# Membership application can also be done over the phone, just call their customer support at 800-328-1935, it’s 24/7 personal assistance.
# A branch visit for sign up is also welcomed. Branches located in San Francisco, El Segundo, and San Mateo, California. There are also branches in Illinois, Colorado and Virginia.

Alliant Credit Union is NCUA insured (Charter # 67955) with 210,332 members and $4.8 billion in assets. Bankrate.com gives it a rating of 3 out of 5 stars.

Westsound 4.20% CD Interest Rate

Westsound Bank has a special 6-month Certificate of Deposit with a yield of 4.20% APY. The minimum deposit eligible to earn APY is only $500 ($100 for IRA accounts).

I called customer service and was told a walk in sign up is required for this account, and membership is available only to those who live, work or worship in the state of Washington. I was also informed that the early withdrawal penalty on this CD account is 3 months of interest for terms over 12 months and 30 days for terms of under 12 months.

The main branch is located in Bremerton, about 60 miles south of Seattle. Westsound Bank is federally insured by the FDIC since 1999 (Certificate # 34843).

Webster Bank $100 Bonus Checking Account

Webster Bank is running a promotion on their checking accounts where you can basically earn up to $100 bonus if you meet all of their requirements. The checking account will award you $20 for your first checking deposit, $20 for payings 3 online bills, $20 for making 3 purchases with your Visa Check Card, and finally giving you $40 is you completely all three.

This is an online deal and is available to all states. To apply, simply go to Webster Bank’s checking account page and click on the “Get your $100 Coupon” icon to be redirected to the sign up page.

*In order to qualify, checking account must be opened by March 5th, 2008 and this offer is available to new Webster checking account memberships only. All three activity listed above must be completely by May 9th, 2008.

PenFed Credit Union 5.00% CD Account

Pentagon Federal Credit Union has several long term CD specials with competitive rates. PenFed Credit Union’s highest CD rate is currently the 7 year 5.00% APY Certificate of Deposit with $1,000 minimum. There’s also a 4.50% APY 3 year CD with the same requirements. Both are also available as an IRA and a money market account.

Once you are locked in for the term of the CD, only the 3.50% APY 6-Month CD earns dividends on a simple interest basis. All the other CD terms will have daily compounding interest and you have the option of choosing whether being paid monthly or at maturity. Upon maturity, your certificate will automatically renew unless you request a change of option either by phone or via online banking.

Application is online, you will first need to create an account with PedFed Credit Union, and then you can transfer funds via free ACH online transfer.

Pentagon Federal Credit Union is federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) up to to $100,000 USD. This credit union has more than 764,000 members and $11.2 billion in assets.

*Please note that penalty may be imposed for early withdrawal and service fees may apply.

Millennium Bank 4.75% Certificate of Deposit

Millennium Bank is offering a 4.26% APY 6 month Certificate of Deposit special with $1,000 minimum deposit. While a 4.26% APY yield may not seem very high, but after the massive recent Fed rate cuts, this is a competitive CD rate.

The interest on this Certificatie of Deposit compounds and pays quarterly. At maturity, you will have 10 grace period days to action before it rolls over on to another CD with an updated rate. The penalty for early withdrawal is 3 month of interest with no principle protection.

Because this isn’t an internet CD, a branch visit is required to open an account. Millennium Bank is located in Des Plaines, IL about 30 miles from the city of Chicago.

Millennium Bank is a member of the FDIC, (Certificate # 34946). For more information, please visit Millennium Bank CD rates deposit home.

Flagstar Bank 4.40% CD Account

Flagstar Bank is offering the highest 12 month Certificate of Deposit rate at 4.40% APY in selected states. The minimum deposit is only $500 and it can be opened as an IRA account.

Flagstar Bank is also offering a competitive, 25 basis points lower 18 month CD at 4.15% APY yields. The deposit requirements and characteristic will be the same as the 12 month CD.

Branch visits will not be required for sign up because this rate is only available through an online application. Furthremore, this CD account is for personal use only, it cannot be brokered or opened as a corporate account. The penalty for early withdrawal on a 12 to 29 month CD account will be 180 days of interest.

Flagstar Bank is a member of the FDIC, (Certificate # 32541). For more information, please visit Flagstar Bank’s CD rates homepage.

Countrywide Bank 4.75% CD Account

Countrywide bank is currently offering the highest yielding 6 month CD at 4.75% APY. The minimum deposit required to open this account is pretty high at $10,000 with compounding daily interest. Monthly checks are also available but account earnings and balances are usually paid in full at maturity. The interest rate is guaranteed for the term of the CD meaning this isn’t a callable CD.

Membership for this high yielding CD is only available when you apply online. If you call or do branch visit to sign up, the rate falls to 4.15% APY.

There is a 90 day simple interest penalty for early withdrawal. If there is any possibility of withdrawaling the principle before the CD maturity, it’s better to invest your money in something more liquid like a savings account.

The Daily Banker mentioned about the worrying financial condition of Countrywide Bank and Bank of America’s acquisition negotiations in the past. If all of this goes through it will definately becomes a moot point in the banking industry.

Countrywide is FDIC insured, (Certificate # 33143). As with any bank, it’s always safe to stay under the FDIC limits of $100,000, especially one with financial problems.

For more information regarding opening an account, please visit Countrywide Bank’s deposit homepage.

Indymac 4.25% Cerificate of Deposit Account

Indymac Bank is offering a 4.25% 3 month internet only Certificate of Deposit with $5,000 minimum deposit. This is the highest yield APY CD rate on Indymac Bank’s for 90 days to 5 years CD rate tier. Due to the recent massive fed cut, all CD terms longer than 3 months will drop into the 3.00% APY range, the Indymac Bank 3 month CD is simply the best choice.

The interest on the Indymac Bank’s Certificate of Deposit, depending on the term of the CD, is compounded daily and can be paid monthly or at maturity. At maturity, your CD will also renew automatically for the selected term at the most current rate offering by Indymac Bank at that time.

The peanlty for early withdrawal for this particular Certificate of Deposit is 1 month of simple interest at the rate being paid on the amount withdrawn with no principle protection.

Indymac Bank also offers customized Certificate of Deposit terms, for more information, please visit Indymac Bank’s deposit homepage or contact their Customer Contact Center at 1-877-748-0004.

Luther Burbank 4.35% Savings Account

Luther Burbank Savings is offering a great 4 month 4.75% *liquid CD with a minimum $10,000 deposit. Its other terms at selected branches are also very competitive with the Santa Rosa, San Rafael, and Palo Alto branch offering a special 90 day 4.85% APY CD. This Certificate of Deposit has no deposit limit and allows you to have one penalty free withdrawals a month.

Luther Burbank Savings is also offering a 4.00% APY checking account with $5,000 minimum deposit to open. A branch visit would be required to open and it’s available in all Luther Burbank Savings branches.

For futher information regarding application, please visit their homepage at http://www.lutherburbanksavings.com.

*A Liquid Certificate of Deposit (CD) usually allows customers to lock deposits in a high CD rate, make unlimited deposit add-ons, and allows fluid (without withdrawal penalties) access to your money.

Countrywide Bank 5.35% CD Account

Countrywide is offering a 4.90% APY 3-month Certificate of Deposit. The minimum deposit is $10,000. Its other terms are also very competitive with yields ranging from 4.75% APY for a 9-month term to 4.00% APY for a 12-month term. These are also available in an IRA. Please see rate table for more details.

Due to the recently feds rate cut, 4.90% APY is currently the highest CD rates in the nation. Interest is compounded daily and credited to your account each month with guaranteed rates for the term of the CD. Monthly interest checks are also available.

There are no fees associated with this account and the penalty for early withdrawal for a 3 month to 12 month term CD would be 91 days of simple interest at the rate paid to the account.

For more information, please check out Countrywide Bank’s CD rates homepage.

LA Financial Credit Union CD Account

L.A. Financial is currently offering the highest CD rates at 5.75% APY with a 13 month term. The minimum deposit on this CD account is $1,000 with at least half of the deposit money being new. Membership requires a new L.A. Financial checking account with direct deposit. The yield without it drops to 5.25% APY.

This Certificate of Deposit isn’t an internet CD so you must mail in your application. Membership for this CD account is open to those who live in Los Angeles County, California and also to anyone who lives or works in Lake Havasu City, Arizona. Please refer to L.A. Financial Credit Union’s membership page and Havasu Community Credit Union’s membership page for more details.

January 31, 2008 is the last day to take advantage of this great Certificate of Deposit offer and many customers didn’t want to hassle with the direct deposits because with the huge recent Fed rate cuts this is still the best CD rate even at 5.25% APY.

Countrywide Bank 5.50% CD Account

Countrywide is offering the highest local CD (Certificate of Deposit) rate at 5.10% APY with a 3 month term. This CD available country wide, but this particular rate of 3 month 5.10% is only available for the state of California. You can check this by visiting Countrywide’s rate tier and typing in your zip code. If you are in California, the rate for the 3 month CD should change from 4.80% to 5.10%.

The Annual Percentage Yields (APY) is effective as of Monday, January 28, 2008. The minimum deposit to open a CD account and obtain the APY is $10,000 for a regular CD and $2,500 for an IRA CD. The penalty for early withdrawwl will 91 days of simple interest at the rate then paid on the account, whether or not paid or earned, on the amount of principal withdrawn.

By comparing CDs, I personally think this will be the highest and last 5.00% APY CD by Countrywide Bank, so take advantage of this offer while it lasts.

Flagstar Bank 5.00% APY CD Accounts

Flagstar Bank is currently offering a great 3 month 5.00% APY CD with an actual rate of 4.92%. This is an internet CD and the best interest CD rate offered by Flagstar Bank. The minimum deposit to open is $500. This CD is also available in an IRA account.

The CD interest is compounded quarterly and for balances up to $10,000 or more, customers can get paid every month by mail. There will be a 10 day grace period when the CD maturity when you can add to the CD, withdrawal, or you can wait until the grace period is over and it will automatically roll over.

Flagstar Bank is also offering a few other certificates of deposits explained below:

Certificate of Deposit (CD) tier:
-$500 deposited for 3 months is offered a CD (Certificate of Deposit) rate of 4.92% with 5.00% APY.
-$500 deposited for 12 months is offered a CD (Certificate of Deposit) rate of 4.83% with 4.91% APY.
-$500 deposited for 18 months is offered a CD (Certificate of Deposit) rate of 4.78% with 4.86% APY.
-$500 deposited for 24 months is offered a CD (Certificate of Deposit) rate of 4.78% with 4.86% APY.
-$500 deposited for 30 months is offered a CD (Certificate of Deposit) rate of 4.78% with 4.86% APY.
-$500 deposited for 36 months is offered a CD (Certificate of Deposit) rate of 4.78% with 4.86% APY.
-$500 deposited for 48 months is offered a CD (Certificate of Deposit) rate of 4.78% with 4.86% APY.
-$500 deposited for 60 months is offered a CD (Certificate of Deposit) rate of 4.78% with 4.86% APY.

From the above Flagstar Bank’s CD rates tier, it’s clear that investing in any other CD other than the 3 month and 12 month CD wouldn’t be a smart decision. It is better off to invest in the 3 month CD, get the highest rate and let it automatically roll over than to lock your money in a 60 month CD for a lower rate.

Early withdrawls peanlty before the maturity of this 5.00% APY 3 month is a 30 day interest under Flagstar Bank’s ‘Truth in Savings Disclosure’ statement. There is no principle protection program.

Indymac Bank 5.15% CD Account

IndyMac Bank is offering a 7 month 5.15% APY internet CD (Certificate of Deposit) and discontinued it’s old 4 month 5.25% APY CD by lowering the APY to 4.10%. With the economy weakening, the bank responded quickly by dropping rates all across the board for CDs and savings account.

Certificate of Deposit rates above 5.00% APY might be history in the very near future.

Like CountryWide Bank, IndyMac is also running into mortgage home loan problems, losing more than $200 million in the third quarter. Moody Investors said IndyMac’s mortgage lender’s business and portfolio rating is much similar to the constantly lowering mortgage debts from the market. With it’s portfolio already dented, please try to stay under the FDIC limits of $100,000 for this 7 month CD.

Equity Bank 5.10% CD Account

Equity Bank S.S.B., chartered under Texas Department of Savings and Mortgage Lending is offering a promotional 7 month CD with an annual percentage yield of 5.10% and an actual rate of 4.95%.

Even though this is not the highest or the best cd rates on the market today, this CD however has one of the most well rounded requirements with minimum $1,000 to open and only 1 month penalty interest for early withdrawl. Furthermore, this 7 month 5.10% APY CD is also the highest CD rate that Equity Bank offers, you can find more information regarding Equity Bank’s CD and IRA products rate tier here.

Equity Bank S.S.B., member of FDIC, provides insurance maximum amount allowable by law of $100,000.

To open an account, simple call 214-237-3170 and a customer service representative will assist you.

Superior Savings 5.25% CD Account

Superior Savings of New England is offering a great 7 month 5.25% APY CD rate. The actual rate on this Certificate of Deposit is 5.12% with a minimum deposit of $500 USD. It is FDIC insured up to 100k with compounding interest daily reinvested back into the account.

This Certificate of Deposit has an exceptionally high 6 month interest penalty for early withdrawl with no principle protection program. So please invest knowning that it will most likely be locked in the full 7 months.

Branches of Superior Savings of New England are located in Connecticut (main office), and in the Bronx, NY. This CD is however available to other states as well. To open, simply download the application and mail it in with the required information. You can fund the account with either an ACH transfer or mail in a check.

MidFirst Bank 5.90% CD Account

MidFrist Bank is currently offering a 7 year 5.90% APY Certificate of Deposit in the state of Arizona and Oklahoma. If you wants to open this CD from any other state, you will need to a walk in and provide all legal documentation. The minimum deposit is $5,000 and it’s FDIC insured up to 100k. Because this is the best CD rate at 5.90% APY, if you want to invest beyond the FDIC insured limits, you can always add a beneficiary to the CD account like your children. Each beneficiary is an additional 100k FDIC beneficiary insurance.

Another thing to keep in mind when investing in this long term high yielding CD account is the fact that this is a Callable CD. A Callable CD is basically a Certificate of Deposit that is able to be “Called back” by the bank after it’s call-protection period and before it’s maturity. This serves to give the bank the ability to give the best CD rate possible without losing interest on the long run. For this particular MidFirst Bank 5.90% 7 year CD, the call protection period is 1 year.

Penalty for early withdrawl is 24 month of interest with no principle protection program. For more information, please call MidFirst Bank’s customer support at 1-888-MIDFIRST inquire about this particular CD not listed on their website.

Countrywide Bank 5.35% CD Account

Countrywide Bank is currently offering great a 6 month 5.45% APY internet Certificate of Deposit. This is the highest CD rate out of Countrywide Bank’s CD tier, the only other great rate worth looking at is the 9 month 5.15% APY, you can find the complete chart here.

The minimum deposit on this 6 month CD is a little bit high at $10,000. Interest on this CD will compound daily with monthly checks available. As far as money transfer goes, you can do it by ACH transfer ini 3 business days or you can write a check and mail it in.

There is currently news circulating around the internet regarding Countrywide Bank’s shares dropping and making up bankruptcy stories. You can read the complete store here at Bank Deals. Thus I would suggest anyone who is interested in this CD to stay under the FDIC insured limit of $100,000.

Soltex Federal Credit Union 5.28% CD Account

Soltex Federal Credit Union is currently offering a 12 month CD with a 5.28% APY with 5.16% interest. Other high yielding rates by Texas CU would be their 6 month 5.15% APY CD rate and 24 month 5.05% APY CD rate. This rate is only available to Texas CU members that have opened a savings account with them before. The minimum deposit to open a savings or checking account with Texas CU is only $5.

Because this is not an internet CD, membership for this Certificate of Deposit is open to anyone living in the vincinity of La Porte, Texas which is located right outside of Houston.

FNBO Direct 5.25% CD Account

FNBO Direct is currently offering a 5.25% APY Certificate of Deposit with an interest rate of 5.05%. The minimum deposit on FNBO Direct’s best cd rate is $500 with FDIC insurance of up to $100,000. This is an online only Certificate of Deposit, which means you can open it in any state as long as you are an existing customer with FNBO Direct. So if you don’t have an accoun with FNBO Direct, you will need to first open a FNBO Direct savings or checking account before you can enjoy the rates of this 9 month CD.

The interest on this 9 month CD is compounded daily and will be credited quarterly. Once you reach maturity on this Certificate of Deposit, you will have 10 days to decide weather to withdrawl the principle with compounded interest. If there is no response within 10 days it will automatically renew and will be locked in the new Certificate of Deposit rate for another 9 months.

To apply online, simple go to the FNBO Direct website and apply.

*No penalty for early withdrawl will be applied to the savings account, but it will cost you 3 month worth of interest if you withdrawl early for the 9 month CD. This penalty can actually hurt your principle if you withdrawl before the 3 months.

TD Ameritrade 5.50% CD Account

TD(Toronto Dominion) Bank is currently offering a great 3 month 5.30% APY CD through TD AMERITRADE. This is a broker CD which means you can reinvest payment at maturity, but you can’t compound the itnerest and reinvest the interest back into the CD account. It’s a simple interest paid at maturity and not monthly. This CD has a high mimimum deposit requirement of $10,000 and deposit limit is the FDIC limit of $100,000. You can invest this CD as an IRA (Individual Retirement Accounts) and get a higher FDIC insurance of up to $250,000.

Because this CD is a broker CD, the penalty for early withdrawal is different from bank CD accounts. A bank CD account will usually charge you a certain month’s interest and most likely will not hurt your principle amount deposited. This CD is different because if you want it before the maturity date, they will find a secondary market buyer to buy it and thus you can actually LOSE your principle amount. Your penalty will be the spread between how much TD AMERITRADE broker sells and buys the Certificate of Deposit.

To open an account, you can go to TD AMERITRADE’s website or you can locate a branch near and open it at a branch.

ETRADE 6 Month CD Rates

E*TRADE Financial is currently offering a great 6 month 5.25% APY Certificate of Deposit. This CD is the highest cd rate out of all the Certificate of Deposits that E*TRADE Financial offers. The minimum deposit on this is $1,000 and there’s no deposit limit but do remember that it’s only FDIC insured up to $100,000. This CD has an automatic renewal at maturity and a guaranteed safety of principal. The guaranteed safety of principle only applies to early withdrawals before the CD maturity. Many banks will charge you penalty that will touch your principle amount deposited into the CD. E*TRADE Financial will only penalize you for half of the term interest that you earned on the CD and they will never touch the money you deposited. In other words, you have absolutely nothing to lose.

To open up an account, you can either go to E*TRADE Financial’s website and apply online. Once you complete your application, E*TRADE Financial will sent you a confirmation email with instructions on how to fund your account.

Countrywide Bank Certificate of Deposit Rates

CountryWide bank is offering an online 3 month CD of 5.45% APY with $10,000 minimum deposit. The interest on this Certificate of Deposit is 5.30% and it has an early withdraw penalty of 91 days of simple interest. This special CD rate can only be applied online and there are no fees assocaited with it. Once your application is approved, there are three major ways of transfering the funds over. You can wire it over, transfer it electronically, or you can always mail in a check. CountryWide is a trusted bank with FDIC insured deposits of up to $100,000.

*CountryWide Bank is also offering a promotional 3 month Certificate of Deposit of 5.50% APY only if you call in and open the account over the phone. This is their promotional special and there wasn’t too much advertising associated with it. Their direct number is
1(800)283-8875.

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