Salem Five Direct is an online division of Salem Five Cents Savings Bank, an innovative bank located in Salem, Massachusetts with over 150 years of banking experience. On the Salem Five Direct website you will find unique bank product offerings developed exclusively for clients seeking to conduct business on the internet. These offers will not be available through the Salem Five branch network and will change from time to time. The Salem Five Direct mission is to offer unprecedented value to our direct banking customers through exclusive product features at highly competitive prices.
I find it incredibly hard to believe that people are signing up for Salem Five Direct's eOne Savings Account. Salem Five charges $3 for each ACH debit that you initiate through Salem Five Direct. A withdrawal from Salem Five Direct initiated through your external account is free.
This information is available in Salem Five Direct's Fee Schedule. You may have to do a site Search for it; it's somewhat buried.
This seems like a depositer-unfriendly fee which all the other online banks I've dealt with do not have. I assumed all banks ate the ACH fee in order to attract depositers. Even if they didn't, I wouldn't have expected it to rise above $1.00.
In addition, Salem Five Direct will assess a $10.00 fee for any account closed within 90 days. I guess this is to protect them from rate-hopping depositers, but it was difficult to find the info when I looked at opening an account there.
If you close the account by mail you will be assessed a $10.00 fee, as well (I guess online closure is free, but this isn't specifically stated).
Perhaps these fees were justified in the days of 5+% interest, but for an online bank offering 1% (as of 2/15/12) they seem out of line.
Perhaps most egregious is that Salem Direct Five pulled a hard credit report on me when I applied for an eOne Savings Account for under $500; an account which I did not consummate after doing a deeper dive into their Disclosures. This hard credit report pull will remain on my credit report for 2 years; potentially affecting my credit score--depending on who's looking, and how the credit agency applies its unique FICO algorithm--as if I had applied for credit.
I can not recommend Salem Five Direct to anyone for anything whatsoever.
I opened an account according to their process.
A few days later, on a Saturday, they called me from a phone number other than the one on their website.
When I returned the call on Monday, they wanted me to tell them the account and routing numbers from my primary checking (at another bank). I told them no way! I was then told I could not have the account unless I would divulge that information. I told her there is no way I should know whom I was talking with.
So I said, fine, I don't want an account with a place that does business like that. But then a few weeks later, I noticed they accepted my initial $100 deposit!
It took a few months and the FDIC, but I finally got my money back... a huge waste of my time.
I've had an eOne Checking account since July 2007, and an eOne Savings acocunt since January 2012. I can understand the complaints that other people on this site have had with ACH deposits *initiated from SalemFive* (the fee does not apply if the other bank initiated the deposit) and restrictions with very large sums of money (but if you have over $25,000 available to invest, why are you putting it in a standard savings account?).
However, I have definitely had polar opposite experiences with their customer service compared to what other reviewers seem to be saying. I've had to call them for at least a dozen various reasons (inform of travel, fix a failed ACH transfer, inquire to a returned bill pay, etc.), and every time, I've gotten a live, native-English speaking, intelligent human within 30 seconds (they have a one-level phone tree). They've answered my question or fixed the problem almost immediately each time. The worst situation I had was where a large transfer from my external mutual fund account failed to show up in my checking account. SalemFive got me and my mutual fund company on a three-way conference call. I'm still not entirely clear what went wrong, but they fixed the problem and the money showed up in my checking account an hour later, while both companies offered to pay the late fee for my then-late tuition bill for me.
The products they offer have been perfect for me. I've never encountered any service charge from them, and they refund all ATM fees, including from international ATMs, for up to $15 in fees per month. I've never lived near any of their physical branches, but I feel completely free to go to any ATM I run into. Their bill pay is quick and free (offering a regular and expedited - 1-2 day delivery - delivery speed). I don't use the debit card much, but that gives small rewards for using it. There are no minimums to maintain, no minimum number of debit card transactions, and no monthly fees. They don't have the best interest rates out there, but they have been consistently in the top 20 or so (as listed on this website) on both the checking and savings accounts.
The biggest difficulty I've had with my accounts is related to finding ways to deposit money into the account. They accept NYCE Shared Deposit, but there aren't many of those ATMs around, even in NYC. They do send you free postage-paid deposit envelopes (with a nice and obscure "Service Center" address), but mailing deposits is still a pain.
Overall though - I've had a fantastic experience with this bank, and have recommended them to many of my friends. No fees, great products, and superb customer service seems hard to beat to me. Plus, they're a small bank so they get you away from the BoA and other corporate behemoths.
I spoke with the bank as a current customer and they will not honor the higher promo rate (currently .9%) for existing customers. Further they will not honor the .9% rate for new money from existing customers. Apparently existing customers new money is less valuable than a new customers new money. Hmmmmmm.
The Texas Ratio is an indicator of how much capital a bank has available compared to the total value of loans considered at risk. As of March 31, 2014 Salem Five Direct had $36.23 million in non-current loans and owned real-estate with $383.43 million in equity and loan loss allowances on hand to cover it. This gives Salem Five Direct a Texas Ratio of 9.45% which is excellent. Any bank with a Texas Ratio near or greater than 100% is considered at risk.
The Texas Ratio for Salem Five Direct decreased slightly from 11.05% as of March 31, 2013 to 9.45% as of March 31, 2014, resulting in a positive change of 14.47%.This indicates that the balance sheet and financial strength for Salem Five Direct has improved slightly in recent periods.
In the past year, Salem Five Direct has increased its total deposits by $366.68 million, resulting in 16.79% growth for the year. A strong track record of growth is an indicator of consumer confidence and the bank's ability to strengthen its balance sheet. The growth Salem Five Direct has shown is excellent.
Both FDIC and NCUA consider capitalization levels of banks and credit unions to be of high importance. Higher capitalization allows for a greater buffer when cover loans that may fail in the future. Salem Five Direct has $3.41 billion in assets with $383.43 million in equity, resulting in a capitalization level of 11.24%, which is excellent.
|FDIC Certificate #||23296|
|Assets and Liabilities|
|Equity Capital||$360.21 million|
|Loan Loss Allowance||$23.22 million|
|Unbacked Noncurrent Loans||$32.29 million|
|Real Estate Owned||$3.94 million|
|Historic Data - March 2013|
|Equity Capital||$298.77 million|
|Loan Loss Allowance||$22.09 million|
|Unbacked Noncurrent Loans||$32.29 million|
|Real Estate Owned||$5.27 million|
|Profit Margin - Quarterly|
|Net Interest Margin||2.82%|
|Return on Assets||0.67%|
|Return on Equity||6.37%|
|Interest Income||$29.75 million|
Always verify rates and promotions with the bank or credit union. We are not Salem Five Direct, we are a rate comparison website and can not provide official rates or promotions.
|1.00%||-||$500k||eOne Savings - New Customers Only|
|2.00%||$10k||-||60 Month eCD Special|
|1.25%||$10k||-||24 Month eCD Special|
|1.00%||$10k||-||18 Month eCD Special|
|1.00%||$10k||-||12 Month eCD Special|
Salem Five Direct is an Internet only bank and does not have branch locations. Its headquarters is located at 71 Washington Street - Salem, MA 01970