Dedicated to Deposits: Deals, Data, and Discussion

New Very High CD Rates at Wachovia - 4% 7-Month, 4.25% 12-Month, 5.25% 5-Year

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Wachovia Bank
Wachovia has just started offering some very high CD rates on all terms. These Featured CDs include a 4.00% APY 7-month CD, a 4.25% APY 12-month CD and a 5.25% APY 60-month CD. The minimum deposit is $5,000. Only the 7-month Featured CD is listed at Wachovia's savings page. A reader noted the other Featured CDs, and I just called and confirmed. Here's the full list of rates and terms:

Wachovia Featured CD Rates as of 6/20/08:

Term APY
7-month 4.00%
12-month 4.25%
18-month 4.40%
24-month 4.50%
36-month 5.00%
48-month 5.15%
60-month 5.25%

When you call, the CSRs always ask for your zip code to verify the Featured CD rates. I've verified the above for zip codes in Florida, Texas and California. The CSR said that these are likely available in all states. I asked about how long he expected these to last. As usual the CSR said these rates could change at any time, but he expected them to last through June and possibly into July.

Update: I asked another CSR regarding the checking account requirement, and I was told that these Featured CDs do require a Wachovia checking account. The first CSR I spoke with this morning said it wasn't required. I'm not sure if it depends on your state or if one of the CSRs was wrong. So your miles may vary. I used a New York zip code for this latest call. I also confirmed the above rates for this New York zip code. Wachovia's Free Checking requires only a $100 minimum initial deposit, and there are no minimum balance requirements. However, there is a hard credit pull. See this post for more checking account details.

These CDs are also available in an IRA. According to the CSR, you can open these online or by phone. The CSR didn't think you could fund these via an ACH transfer from an account of another bank. However, at the start of the online application, it states:
Submit your completed application and deposit check by mail or at a Wachovia Financial Center. You can also fund your CD by transferring funds from an existing Wachovia account or requesting a transfer from another financial institution

Update 7/8/08: A reader has reported that if you don't already have a checking account, you won't be able to open the CD online. A branch visit is your best bet.

Wachovia CDs with terms of one year or longer have an early withdrawal penalty of 180 days of interest. Terms over 90 days and under one year have a penalty of 90 days interest.

Other Wachovia Bank Deals

For those who signed up before June in the Way2Save program will be earning 16% interest on their Way2Save accounts through August 2008. Unfortunately, deposits are limited so it's hard to get much money into this account. Even without this 16%, the Way2Save program is still not a bad deal for small balances for this first year. See my previous Way2Save post for more details.

I haven't seen any new online Wachovia checking account bonuses lately. They've often had online checking account bonuses for $50. Let me know if you see a new one. They do often have $75 checking account bonuses for new branches. The last new-branch checking account bonus that I reported was last month in Houston. For other past Wachovia promotions, please see my Wachovia deals page.

Wachovia still does have a $25 refer-a-friend bonus for opening a checking account.

Recent News on Wachovia

As this recent article on Wachovia indicates, the bank is having problems in this mortgage mess. According to the news article, Wachovia is unlikely to raise more capital in the near-term. I wonder if these new high CD rates are related to this issue. There's another article at CNBC which speculates that JPMorgan Chase may be interested in a Wachovia bid. I wouldn't worry much about Wachovia's future since it is the fourth largest bank in the US by assets. Wachovia's financials can be reviewed at their FDIC page. But as I recommend for any bank, it's best to stay below the FDIC insurance limits.

Thanks to the readers who mentioned these new CD rates in the comments.

Update 6/22/08: I have a new post on this deal.

  Tags: Wachovia Bank, CD rates

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Comments
27 Comments.
Comment #1 by Hyperchondriac (anonymous) posted on
Hyperchondriac
hi. if anyone has a referal code, pls let me know. i would like to sign up for an account :)
lilpunkATgmailDOTcom

1
Comment #2 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
i called and was told 5 yr apy 5 per cent i am in nyc

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Comment #3 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Arizona has the same deals.

1
Comment #4 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I called in soCal and they said a checking account was required.

1
Comment #5 by Jeff (anonymous) posted on
Jeff
I received a rate sheet from an AZ branch and it says checking is required except for former World Savings customers.

1
Comment #6 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
From Wachovia's FAQ:

www.wachovia.com/savings/featured-cd.html#panel5-faq11

"For our Featured CD, you will need a Wachovia checking account."

1
Comment #7 by Bozo (anonymous) posted on
Bozo
To: All
Re: Sign of the times, perhaps?

The 18-month 4.4% isn't super, but it's a heck of a lot better than a punch in the nose. That's going to give Alliant a run for the money, so to speak. Granted, Wachovia is in deep doo-doo (like all banks, it seems), but if they want to bribe us for our money, let them.

By the way, when I rolled over my last CD at Wachovia, they didn't make a fuss over the checking account, maybe because I was an old-timer from World Savings. I got the "featured rate" of 3.85%, not that I was giddy to get it.

Yours,

Bozo

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Comment #8 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I bought 2 large CDs yesterday in Florida Wachovia and did not get close to todays rates. Is there a chance I can complain and get todays rates.????????

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Comment #9 by Bozo (anonymous) posted on
Bozo
To: Anonymous
Re: Wachovia rates

I'd say there is a chance you could complain. I'd say the chance you could get today's rates without a penalty for early withdrawal depend on your smile, the relationship you have with the bank, and karma.

On the flip side, the last time I rolled over a Wachovia CD, the rate FELL from 3.85% to 3.15% the morning I renewed. I had a print-out from my computer showing the rate as of some ungodly hour in the morning (the higher rate) before the techies updated the website. The branch manager called the home office and I got the higher rate. Rates do change, but if you're lucky, you can cut a deal.

Good luck.

Yours,

Bozo

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Comment #10 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Central Illinois has the same rates that Banking Guy quoted.

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Comment #11 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Anybody know if Wachovia has some flavor of checking account that I could combine with this deal, that does NOT involve a hard credit pull?

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Comment #12 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
How are these rates "very high"?

Let's not get carried away now. These rates suck in comparison to what was available just a year ago.

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Comment #13 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Rates are available in GA

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Comment #14 by mk (anonymous) posted on
mk
quote "Let's not get carried away now. These rates suck in comparison to what was available just a year ago."

They are better than the prevailing rates. The Fed has dropped interest rates by 3.25% in the last 9 months or so. Therefore, last year's comparison does not apply.

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Comment #15 by Sree (anonymous) posted on
Sree
Just opened, thanks Bankging Guy, u rock as usual.,

Few notable observations
1) a Checking account is a must
2) no credit enquiry
3) Gift referral of $25, if you know some existing customer with account number and name.
4) 90 days interest penalty(deducted from the principle as well) for early break up of CD

I opened CDs, picked up the checking account which requires a min $100 deposit.
This checking account needs a min $5000 balance or $10,000 in CDs all together. otherwise $20 monthly fee for this checking account.
Also I picked up a fellow customer there and made myself as a referral for that customer, we both will get $25 gift card after 8 weeks :-)
I found a strange observation(may be I am not aware of it till now) about the pre-closure of a CD. Will send an email directly to the banking guy about this to get clarified..

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Comment #16 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
All of the special CD rates are active in Baltimore branches with a checking account.

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Comment #17 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I don't see these rates when I try to apply online. Only 7 month 4% is listed. 3 YR is listed but shows at 1.5% not 5% on on online application. How do I get 5% on 36 mth? Do I actually have to call CSR and ask for these rates? CT is my state.

1
Comment #18 by Banking Guy (anonymous) posted on
Banking Guy
I would recommend calling. The CSR can confirm the rate available in your area, and can instruct you how to open the CD.

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Comment #19 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Just purchased a CD in California and no checking account was required.

1
Comment #20 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Now the featured CD is for 7 months and 12 month. Other terms have a very low rate.

1
Comment #21 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Contrary to the 7/8 note, I applied for the 12-month CD online 6/29 even though I don't have a checking account. Got an email the next day saying the account would be opened when I funded it, with the rate guaranteed for 10 days. I called and they said I had a choice of funding by ACH (which is what I had chosen on the online form), mailing a check, or taking a check to a branch here in the Chicago area. After deciding to take the funding to a branch, I backtracked and decided to stick with ACH, so upon my request they emailed me a pdf form to fax back. Did that yesterday. No one said anything about needing a Wachovia checking account despite what their website claims.

1
Comment #22 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
P.S. to the note I just posted -- wiring is of course another funding option, as is transfer from another Wachovia account. BTW, I see that their website is unchnged from when I did the online application 6/29, i.e. it still incorrectly (for my case, at least) states that a checking account is required.

1
Comment #23 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
As I mentioned above I opened my account online. The email I got back the next day -- which said nothing about the need for a checking account --had a specific "financial specialist's" name and direct phone line. When I later called, it was past his work hours, and the CSR I got at the general sales rep # hesitated when answering a few of my questions, explaining that she was not an "online Financial Specialist" like the guy who emailed me. She said that she typically handled over-the-phone applications, but was not 100% sure of online-application requirements (though she was cheerfully willing to look into things for me). So maybe the online-specialist vs.non-online-specialist distinction explains some of the inconsistent info re a checking requirement. Or maybe CSR's simply have some leeway to decide, or inconsistent training. Or maybe it does vary by region as Bank Guy theorized.

1
Comment #24 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Opened a CD account in CA on 7/14/08. Rep stated they no longer required a checking account.

1
Comment #25 by Darvin (anonymous) posted on
Darvin
Hello. I find your blog is very interesting. So much has already been said about banks – good and bad. Wachovia Bank is one of the most popular among the dissatisfied customers, the majority of reports have been posted about it. You can find lots of claims on www.****edconsumer.com. Everyone can file his/her feedback on the site to share experience with others.

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Comment #26 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
hi, i have a chunk of retirement monies in money market at wachovia-i am thinking about switching to cd for 36 months @5%. money market has consistantly been going down and i am about $3000.00 ahead after 2 years. with the ecomony the way it is--would i be wise to do this (i can afford to tie it up for th 3yrs). i have all accounts with wachovia so would not be a problem to switch. Tuxxy in Pa.

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Comment #27 by Banking Guy (anonymous) posted on
Banking Guy
One thing to consider is the early withdrawal penalty. For the 3-year CD at Wachovia, it's 180 days of interest. So if rates do shoot up by next year, you should be able to do an early closure. If you close at one year into the term, the effective yield would be equivalent to a 2.50% account. So that would be about 1.75% less than what you could have earned if you had chosen a 1-year CD. That's about $175 less for each $10,000.

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