H&R Block Bank is offering very competitive CD rates. The yield for terms of 24, 36, 48 and 60 months is 5.50% APY. The 18-month CD has a yield of 5.35% APY, and the 12-month CD has a yield of 5.25% APY. The shorter term CDs are less competitive. Note, to see the CD rates, make sure you select the CD tab on the rate page.
I wasn't able to reach a customer service rep. It appears no one answers the phones after business hours. So the CD information below is based on what I read from H&R Block's website:
- Minimum deposit $250
- Interest earned on a CD can be paid monthly, quarterly or upon maturity at the customer's option
- Interest automatically compounds in the account, unless you specifically request interest payments be disbursed
- Grace period varies by account type
- Available to personal or business customers
- Must mail
or faxin application
- CD can be funded by check
or electronic transfer from an existing account at another bank
- Disbursements can be mailed to you, transferred into another H&R Block Bank account or electronically sent to another bank at your request
I can't find any details about what would happen if the rates change before they receive your application in the mail or before they receive the funds. Also, I can't find any details about early withdrawal penalties or grace period time. I'll provide updates once I hear from them.
[Update 10/18/07: I spoke with the customer service rep today. Here are some additional details:
- Rate guaranteed at time of fax or the date of check
- Grace period is 10 calendar day
- Early withdrawal penalty is 90 days for the 24-month term and up to 6-months for the longer terms
- POD beneficiaries can be specified
- No hard credit inquiry is done
As a commenter noted, they're having problems with their mortgage subsidiary (see Reuters' article). So they seem to be in a similar situtation as Countrywide which explains the high rates.]
I did not know H&R Block had a banking unit so I don't know if they have a history of high CD rates. The bank is FDIC insured (Certificate # 58124). It was just established in 2006 so it's too new to have a rating at Bankrate.com. It's a small bank that's operated out of a Kansas City, Missouri office. From the FDIC database, as of June 30, 2007, the bank has $1.4 billion in assets, $1.1 billion in total deposits and 33 employees.
Thanks to the reader who emailed me info on this bank.
Update 10/29/07: Commenter reported that H&R Block cannot accept faxes since they are not able to initiate an ACH transfer. Checks must be mailed.