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MetLife Bank Raises Money Market Rates

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MetLife increased the rates on their Money Market Account and High Yield Savings Account from 3.30% to 3.50% APY. Also, they still have the $50 signup bonus for the Money Market Account. The requirements for the bonus remain the same since my last post on them. The main requirement is the deposit of $5K.

It should be noted that both the Money Market and High Yield Savings require a $5K balance for the 3.5% rate to apply. Balances below that only get 1.0%. The Savings account has the advantage of only requiring a balance of $50 to avoid a monthly service charge. The Money Market requires $1500. Their product comparison page has more details about both of these.

Should your insurance agent be your banker?

I just found this article at Bankrate.com. It's a little old but I found it relevant for this post. Thanks to the Gramm Leach Bliley Act of 1999, insurance companies like MetLife are allowed to offer banking services. MetLife isn't alone, Statefarm and Allstate have their banks now. I just checked the savings rates they offer, and they're not very competitive.

The article didn't give any real problems with banking with your insurance company. You shouldn't expect local bank branches from them. They are essentially online banks. The one tip from the article is to stay with the top-of-the-line insurance companies with strong credit ratings.


Comments
4 Comments.
Comment #1 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Tried to signup online (using the above $50 bonus link) on 9/19, but I received an error message and was asked to call a toll-free number. I called and apparently my driver's license number has been rejected. CSR told me to fax a copy to her. (This is not a tollfree fax number). They did not call back to confirm that my account was created. I just kept trying the username/password I had created. It finally worked on 9/21. No telephone call or e-mail from them to let me know that my account was ready. (Great service guys). Once I'm logged in, I want to add an external checking account for ACH transfers, and thereby send them the opening deposit. Turns out I have to fill out & print a form, and mail it to them with a voided check. It says it will take up to 10 business days from receipt. This account is p*ssing me off already, but I'll park $5k here for 90 days for the bonus. Then it's getting closed, and the money transferred back to ED.

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Comment #2 by Neo (anonymous) posted on
Neo
What does anyone know about the MetLife Money Market Account? I would be interested only for this $50 sign-up bonus. Doing a rate comparison to EmigrantDirect, you would lose only $6 in interest by moving the $5000 to MetLife but you then get the $50 bonus.

Thoughts?

Neo

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Comment #3 by Banking Guy (anonymous) posted on
Banking Guy
Except for potential account opening issues as the first commenter mentioned, it seems like a decent deal. However, MetLife is doing a worse job than ING in keeping the rates high. It's probably not an online bank where you would want to be in it for the long term.

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Comment #4 by Banking Guy (anonymous) posted on
Banking Guy
Looks like the $50 bonus is over. Can't find it anymore on the website as of Jan 28, 2006. However, the money market rate is now 4.00% APY.

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