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HSBC Direct's New Savings Account Promo - 3.50% Guaranteed to 8/15/08

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HSBC
HSBC Direct has just started a new promotion offering 3.50% APY on its no-minimum Online Savings Account. The rate is guaranteed through 8/15/2008. From the rates table it appears that the rate will apply to all balances even if it's not new money.

It's no 6% special like they did last year, but considering the current rate environment, it's not too bad. It's only guaranteed to remain 3.50% for 2.5 months. You would think they could have made it at least 3 months.

HSBC Direct's OSA has remained a little more competitive over the last year than other no-minimum online savings accounts like those from EmigrantDirect and ING Direct. The main issue with HSBC Direct is their slow ACH transfer service. It takes a minimum of 3 days to transfer your money to and from external accounts, and at least 2 days during the transfer your money isn't earning any interest. The ACH transfer system does have some nice features that include allowing an unlimited number of links to external accounts and links can be set up online without having to send in a voided check. Neither of those other two online savings accounts have both of these features. I have a more complete list of HSBC Direct's Online Savings Account features at this 2007 post.

  Tags: savings account, HSBC

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Comments
14 Comments.
Comment #1 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Awesome!

I had some bucks in HSBC and would have moved it to Countrywide.

Instead I will keep it at HSBC.

At 3.50% APY, HSBC is the highest rate local bank still and I will likely never switch banks since it is the worlds largest corporation now and also offers high rates to boot as well as being on my corner.

HSBC is my bank now and I will never leave or switch. HSBC has me as a customer and the higher rate inks their position as #1.

At a margin of .30% now with Countrywide, I think it pays to keep all the funds in a single bank instead so I could wind up moving funds back to HSBC so I will have significantly more cash deposits at a single bank up to the FDIC limit.

So HSBC becomes my #1 primary bank, while Countrywide becomes my #2 secondary bank for FDIC limit banks AT THE MOMENT.

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Comment #2 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I go to the HSBC branch alot in NYC.

I usually use the ATM and had to open a FREE CHECKING ACCOUNT for an IBOND which I have to close out after 180 days are up but there is no fee if I generate a transaction each month such as a billpay for $1.00.

HSBC's was ahead of the curve and now the CEO of Wachovia and Washington Mutual GET THE BOOT!

HSBC has the 3.50% short term rate while Wachovia has a very weak Way2Save offer which is complex and not worth it and while Citibank has a much weaker rate. WaMU had a 3.30% APY, but now HSBC is one upping them.

So KUDOS to HSBC as they are the best all around bank bar none if they are available. HSBC does everything right to keep me as an online customer and of the banks, is very competitive and the worlds largest corporation to boot.

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Comment #3 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Thank you for the heads up, Banking Guy. I probably will up the balance in my HSBC OSA. I hate myself for using their ACH service, but I use the service heavily anyway. It's just so darn convenient and hassle free! And their executions are, so far at least, flawless. I also like their well-defined late cut-off time and their willingness to accept ACH orders over weekends, and then execute them without (time) penalty. Also, I have umpteen accounts on my transfer list. These services that limit you to five or six accounts are just nuts. Still, I know I should not be using their ACH service, which is expensive. Luxury costs, I guess. I am spoiled.

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Comment #4 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
HSBC is NOT a bank to transfer from.

It is great if it is your LOCAL BANK linked to Countrywide. Countrywide's ACH system is terrific with next day funding to boot. Countrywide has a better rate and better ACH system. However HSBC is a LOCAL BANK and so you can deposit directly to HSBC.

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Comment #5 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I have a small account with HSBC and was glad to see they increased their rates. However, that hardly makes them a great bank, They are not ahead of the curve they are just trying to catch up with the curve that they have been behind for several month's now. I don't think they are the worlds largest corp either. They might be the largest bank.The ACH there is a bummer. All that being said, I expect all rates to be 1% or more higher by the end of the year .I am staying away from cd's. Keep your powder dry and your cash liquid as higher rates are not far way and much higher rates are just an election. After a year of democrats being in control inflation will be such I don't think I would want to be in 4.5 or 5 % cd's.

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Comment #6 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Previous poster is 100% misinformed.

Forbes Magazine Rated HSBC as the #1 Largest Corporation in the World.

"HSBC tops Forbes 2000 list of world's largest companies," April 4, 2008"

HSBC is ahead of the curve and has been for months. It has slaughtered every bank out there and is the #1 Worlds largest corporation. Thats right.

Countrywide does not offer local deposit services such as a regular bank at this time. Therefore Countrywide can not be an everything bank.

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Comment #7 by ctgottapee (anonymous) posted on
ctgottapee
it is true, while HSBC's ACH clearing time is dead slow, it is by far the most versatile system around.

you can have near unlimited ACH accounts, no fees on transfers, and a high 100k limit so you can do big transfers. the web interface is dead simple to use as well.

of course you do pay a fee for this convenience hidden in the delay it takes to clear, but then most banks don't offer near the convenience or even the option

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Comment #8 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Confirmed: I received an E-mail that 3.5% is my new APY through 8/15. So, it is also valid for existing customers.

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Comment #9 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Countrywide Bank uses the same ACH as HSBC I believe which is run by CashEdge, however offers next day transfers instead.

HSBC combined with Countrywide is a best of breed banking combo. I cant reiterate this enough. 3.80% linked to 3.50% local bank linked to online billpayment.

HSBC does have hold times on deposited funds into these accounts and delays on billpayments however. But interest accures and the loss is still better than existing Banks.

The problem with HSBC I have was that I applied late for a Treasury Direct Account and had to use a physical check for an ibond. So I have a FREE CHECKING ACCOUNT open. The lady said I could go back to the bank to close it however on the website I saw there is a 180 day hold period so to get around this I have to initiate one billpayment using the account within 3 months and then will close the account after 6 months.

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Comment #10 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
HSBC as being the largest corporation in the world has clout that no other bank can match.

HSBC named Best Retail Bank in Hong Kong and Asia Pacific as well as of May 30th 2008.

It is in the top tier of rates and have large global exposure and access.

For NYC metro, there is no Indymac, or Corus for local accounts.

For NYC metro, you have essentially HSBC and Capital One and WaMU where I am in the top rate tiers of local banks.

HSBC has $1 min and a temporary bump to 3.50% and large branch network and ATM access. Capital One is an online account only and WAMU was 3.30% but with a bank I can not ever trust again.

So for me HSBC is my BANK.

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Comment #11 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
HSBC Direct Online Accounts require acceptance of eStatements only; no mail of statements!?! All disclosures, statements, account terms are only delivered to you electronically. If you want to withdraw consent for e-delivery of such information for your HSBC Direct Online accounts, you will have to close the HSBC Direct Online. Is this really sound. What if you die; how would some1 know if you have a balance, or if you even have/had the online account?

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Comment #12 by Chris (anonymous) posted on
Chris
What does the rate drop to after Aug 15th?

1
Comment #13 by Banking Guy (anonymous) posted on
Banking Guy
That's a good question. Since many online savings accounts have increased their standard rates to 3.50% APY, it would be nice if HSBC just kept it at 3.50%. But I have a feeling that's wishful thinking. My guess is that it'll go back down to 3.05% APY where it was before the promo.

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Comment #14 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Whats the ACH Outbound limit for HSBC Direct? Citibank has such a low outbound limit!!

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