Update 1/7/11: The rate is now 3.25% APY up to $15K.
Commonwealth Bank & Trust Company is offering a reward checking account called Extreme Checking. It pays 3.25% APY on balances up to $15,000 (1.00% for above) and refunds ATM fees of up to $25 per cycle if the following monthly requirements are met:
- 10 debit card purchases
- one direct deposit or ACH debit
- receive electronic statements
If these are not met, the rate falls to 0.10%. Minimum intial deposit is $100. There are no monthly service charges and no minimum balance requirements.
Update 9/23/09: I'm afraid it only lasted about 2 months. The nationwide availability is over. Under the "enroll now" button on the Extreme Checking page, it states "Available to KY, IN & OH residents only."
Update 7/28/09: The bank now has an online application provided by andera.com. I received confirmation from bank via email that people in any US state may open an account. You can contact the bank for more information at 1-800-244-7708. Note, nationwide availability often does not last long for small banks that offer attractive deals.
Branches are located in the Kentucky cities of Louisville, Shelbyville, Anchorage and Simpsonville.
The bank's ratings for safety and soundness are strong: 4 stars (excellent) at BauerFinancial and 4 stars (sound) at Bankrate.com. Both ratings are based on 3/31/09 financial data. The bank has been FDIC insured since 2006 (FDIC Certificate # 10146).
Other Reward Checking Accounts
To find reward checking accounts in other areas of the nation or to learn more about these accounts, please refer to my High Yield Checking website.
- 01/07/11: 3.25% APY up to $15K; 1.00% over
- 08/27/10: 3.25% APY up to $25K
- 05/13/10: 4.00% APY up to $25K; 0.75% over; 0.10% base
- 09/23/09: Website now says accounts limited to KY, IN and OH.
- 07/28/09: Received confirmation that account is available nationwide
- 05/17/09: 4.50% APY guaranteed through the 2010 Kentucky Derby (May 2010).
- 01/17/09: 4.50% APY for up to $25K
- 07/23/08: 5.25% APY for up to $25K; 1.01% for above; 0.10% if req's not met