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4.00% Reward Checking Account at Bank2 in OK

POSTED ON BY

Bank2

Update 1/10/10: The top rate is scheduled to fall to 4% APY for balances up to $15,000 on February 8, 2010.

Bank2 is offering a reward checking account called Great Rate Checking. The account offers the following features if certain monthly requirements are met:

  • 4.00% APY on balances up to $25,000
  • 1.01% APY on balances over $25,000
  • 0.01% base rate if qualifications are not met
  • ATM fees refunded up to $50 (nationwide only)

The monthly requirements include:

  • 12 check card purchases
  • direct deposit (CSR said any ACH deposit also counts)
  • receive e-statements
  • access online banking

Additional features of the account regardless of the monthly requirements include:

  • $100 minimum initial deposit
  • no minimum balance requirement
  • no monthly fees
  • multiple accounts can be opened, but requirements must be met for each account As of 5/6/09, there's a limit of 2 accounts per household.

More details of this account are provided at the bank's micro-website.

As of 2/8/2010, the bank is starting a companion savings account, Great Rate Savings. It'll pay 2.01% APY for balances up to $35,000 if the above checking requirements are met.

The rate may be guaranteed through 1/01/2010. This is based on the bank's advertisement in today's (3/08/09) Oklahoma City newspaper. The ad is available online here. Note, I only see this guarantee in the image of the ad. I don't see it in the ad's small print or at the bank's website. I recommend saving this ad for future reference.

Update 1/10/10: A reader reported receiving a letter from Bank2 informing customers that the top rate is scheduled to fall to 4% APY and the cap is scheduled to fall to $15,000 effective February 8, 2010.

The bank provides an online application, and the first page of the application states: We welcome all residents of the United States to apply. Please note that Bank2 is a small bank, and small banks often change their policies on account availability. Update 5/7/09: It looks like they have changed it. According to the website, it's now only available to Oklahoma residents.

The online application allows for electronic funding using your existing checking or savings account.

Bank2 has two offices in Oklahoma City. According to Bank2's About Page:

Bank2 is a subsidiary of the Chickasaw Banc Holding Company. The Holding Company and thus Bank2 are 100% owned by the Chickasaw Nation.


Bank2 has solid ratings for safety and soundness: 4 stars (sound) at Bankrate.com and 4 stars (excellent) at BauerFinancial. Both ratings are based on 9/30/08 financial data. Update 5/7/09: Their ratings have gone done. Current ratings based on 12/31/08 data: 3 stars (adequate) at BauerFinancial and 2 stars (below peer group) at Bankrate.

Bank2 has been FDIC insured since 1934 (FDIC Certificate # 11521).

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.

Rate History:
02/08/10: 4.00% APY up to $15K (reader reported receiving a letter) debit card req = 12
03/08/09: 5.01% APY up to $25K (was guaranteed to 12/31/09); 1.01% over; 0.01% base; debit card req = 10


  Tags: Bank2, checking account, Oklahoma, reward checking account

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Comments
24 Comments.
Comment #1 by Big Banking Guy Fan (anonymous) posted on
Big Banking Guy Fan
Banking Guy you rock...
Bank2 got me with the rate guarantee. I have questions, but I figured apply first ask questions later. I was unable to find a fee schedule, nor could I determine if bill pay is free. I'm guessing maybe it's not free since they don't brag about it. I can report there's mention of a dormant fee as follows: "All Checking, NOW, and Money Market Accounts will be charged the dormant fee on the account statement containing the 181st calendar day of inactivity by the customer and every month until the customer reactivates the account." Again, I was unable to find a schedule of fees, so I don't know how much the fee is. I applied for a joint account, and it asked questions for each applicant to confirm identity. They were actually very 'easy' questions....I've had some ask stuff that was so obscure about me that even I couldn't answer them with 100% certainty! :) They allow ACH funding, and the process ends saying: A bank rep will be in touch within the next few days with further details. I have a list of questions to ask when they contact me. I hope this bank and their account is as good as it sounds.

1
Comment #2 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I noticed that many terms and conditions of banks mention that it can be charged a dormant fee. In most cases, what determines dormancy is not explicitly stated. I even wrote to one asking what constitutes the dormant condition and how to prevent it. I did not get any reply.

1
Comment #3 by BloggingBanks (anonymous) posted on
BloggingBanks
You also got me with the rate guarantee. In todays environment banks are slashing the rates on their checking and savings accounts accross the board. My rewards checkign account recently received a cut from 6% to 4%. That's why it is advisable to keep some of your money locked in a CD.

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Comment #4 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I also agree that this is a great deal with the rate guarantee. I called and spoke to a helpful rep who stated that the bill payment is free. They also confirmed that the rate guarantee is in place for ALL customers regardless of location (I am out of state and they mentioned they have gotten customers from as far away as California).

I am going to open this account.

1
Comment #5 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
It says all conditions must be met by 5th day of the month.
Does it mean 10 ATM transactions in just 5 days?

1
Comment #6 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Please post the answer if they've told you whether a manual push (ACH) from another account meets the requirement for a "direct deposit"

1
Comment #7 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
This question goes out to anyone who's already applied. About how long does it take for the bank rep to get in touch? Is it by phone or e-mail? Thanks

1
Comment #8 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I just phoned Bank2 and confirmed that an ACH transfer from another account does meet the requirement for monthly direct deposit.

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Comment #9 by Melanie (anonymous) posted on
Melanie
I think I will sign up for this, but can someone tell me how one gets refunded ATM fees?

Also, is anyone nervous that keeping a high balance in a debit linked account is risky for theft? Just me?

1
Comment #10 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I too am nervous about keeping 25K in a account with an actively used debit card. I've always kept my main savings separate from my everyday checking account (making sure there was NO overdraft protection linking the two) for this very reason.

However, I have opened the Bank2 account. Couldn't resist the interest rate guarantee. My plan is to use the debit card at one merchant only. I normally go to Meijer once per month and plan to divide my purchases into 10 separate transactions at the self-checkout. I figure this will minimize the likelihood of the card getting stolen, and make it easier to track down the culprit if it does happen.

Here's a link that explains your liability if your debit card is stolen: http://consumerist.com/consumer/debit-cards/debit-card-stolen-how-much-are-you-liable-for-242952.php

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Comment #11 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
a pull for each credit bureau, per fatwallet.

1
Comment #12 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I never carry debit card for any purpose other than to use 10 times on line for micropayments.

1
Comment #13 by PCdweebs (anonymous) posted on
PCdweebs
So what is the consensus? Hard pull or soft one?

So far, I hear it is one hard from each credit report. Is that right?

1
Comment #14 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Hard credit pull only from Transunion when I opened the account end of March. Customer service is great. I was concerned it would be a hassle but all it takes is a scheduled $5 monthly transfer, a few visits to Starbucks, gas and several other minor debits for 5% interest. It's a very good deal--especially when I look at my sorry Chase savings account or my increasingly disappointing Alliant
accounts. I use the card as "credit" so I don't have to enter a pin. Just remember to begin your 10 debits on the 7th and conclude them before the end of the month so there is plenty of time for them to post to the account before the end of the cycle.

1
Comment #15 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I just checked Bank2 on Bankrate.com and BauerFinancial, and their ratings are downgraded as follows:

Bankrate.com: 2 stars, "below peer group"

BauerFinancial: 3 stars

1
Comment #16 by Steve (anonymous) posted on
Steve
The ad showing the rate guarantee no longer shows up at that link. Could someone who saved a copy of it post a screenshot?

Does anyone know if ACH transfers can be initiated from this bank's website?

Something funny I noticed: their website ad at www.bank2greatrate.com is almost exactly the same as First State Bank's website at www.firstchoicechecking.com. They both say "powered by FIRST ROI".

1
Comment #17 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Can you please update and comment on the decline in Bank2's ratings since you first posted on it? I opened an account in March with $10,000 and because of the ease of use--and small amount of $$ needed to fulfill the monthly debit requirement, and given the bank's solid ratings, I was considering putting in another $10,000 for the rate. But now I'm concened about its drop in ratings on Bankrate and Bauer. Is a 2-star from Bankrate a red flag? That's a two-star drop since you posted. Even with FDIC limits, should this deter a conservative investor from doing business with Bank2?

1
Comment #18 by glxpass (anonymous) posted on
glxpass
To Anonymous, at 7:12 AM, May 01, 2009:

I consider myself extremely financially conservative and I've no qualms about putting a large amount of money across several Bank 2 Reward Checking accounts.

As most banks, Bank 2 has FDIC insurance. As long as you stay under FDIC limits (currently $250K per depositor until 1/1/2010) at a particular bank, your money is fully insured.

Should Bank 2 go under and you funds are at or below the FDIC limit, you will receive your principal, along with all the interest that has accrued to date.

Regardless, I hope Bank 2 does OK. The people I've worked provide excellent customer service, and are very pleasant, too.

1
Comment #19 by Steve (anonymous) posted on
Steve
Nevermind my earlier comment about the ad not appearing; it's working now (and note that it won't show up if Adblock is enabled in firefox).

1
Comment #20 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
No longer nationwide - on the reward checking page I see the following:

"Changes as of 5/6/09-This account is limited to 2 accounts per customer and/or household. Additionally, the account is limited to Oklahoma residents only. The account may be offered to Bank2 loan customers."

1
Comment #21 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
It is amazing how this bank sustains the 5% rate; not for long I predict... 4, 3, 2, 1

Remember it took in a lot of out-of-state rate chasers who do small transactions...

1
Comment #22 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Just got a letter from bank2 today - the rate will be dropping to 4% starting Feb 8, and the cap will also change to $15k from $25k. There goes my last 5% RCA. :(

1
Comment #23 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
6:01 PM preditor: realized in six days; not too far:-)

1
Comment #24 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Oh, forgot to add that the number of debit card usage requirement will change to 12 from 10 in February as well.

1