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Rate Cuts at Redneck Bank and Its Sister Banks

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It's yet another unfortunate example of high-yield accounts becoming overloaded with deposits. Redneck Bank and its two sister banks (AmericaNet and Evantage) sent out emails today informing their customers of rate cuts scheduled to take effect on 5/05/2009. These banks had been offering leading rates for both their reward checking accounts and online savings accounts.

Here's a copy of the email sent to Evantage customers. I've seen readers post similar emails for AmericaNet and Redneck Bank.

Dear Customer:

Thank you very much for choosing Evantage Bank as your financial institution. During the last few months, we've experienced a tremendous growth of new customers opening Rewards Checking and Mega Money Market Accounts. Due to this high demand, we subsequently must change the rates of our Rewards Checking and Mega Money Market Accounts, effective May 5, 2009. The new rates are as follows:

Rewards Checking

4.00% APY* on daily balances less than or equal to $10,000.00**
1.00% APY* on daily balances greater than $10,000.00**
Rewards Checking accounts limited to two per Social Security number.

Mega Money Market

2.00% APY* on daily balances less than or equal to $35,000.00
1.00% APY* on daily balances greater than $35,000
Mega Money Market accounts limited to one per Social Security number.

Important: Please note that since the rates are changing in the middle of the monthly statement cycle, your next statement will reflect a blended interest rate combining the higher rate during the first part of the statement cycle and the lower rate during the last part of the statement cycle.

It was only in March that these banks put in place new tiers which limited the balances that qualified for the top rates. I was hoping that showed they intended to keep these rates for a while. Here's a timeline for the changes in these accounts over the last couple of months:
  • 5/05/09: Rate drops: 4.00% APY up to $10K (Chk), and 2.00% APY up to $35K (MMA)
  • 4/08/09: Redneck Bank stops accepting new applications
  • 3/12/09: New tiers: 5.25% APY only up to $10K (Chk), and 3.10% APY only up to $35K (MMA)
  • 3/31/08: Original tiers: 5.25% APY up to $25K (Chk), and 3.10% APY on all balances (MMA)

As I described in this post, RedneckBank.com, Evantage.com and AmericaNet.com are internet divisions of three Oklahoma banks which are all owned by the Huckabay family. The three banks have separate FDIC charters, but they've been keeping these accounts very similar.

For details about these banks and accounts, please refer to the following posts:
Thanks to the readers who mentioned these rate cuts in emails and in the comments.

Other Reward Checking Accounts

With these three banks cutting their reward checking accounts to under 5%, the remaining nationwide 5% reward checking account list is shrinking (see list). Bank2 is still offering 5.01% APY on its reward checking account, and as of 4/19/09, it's still advertising a rate guarantee until 1/1/2010 (see post). But as we learned with Redneck Bank, they could still lower the balance cap which is as bad as a rate cut. The best bet for picking a reward checking account may be choosing one with a top rate in the 4% range. Those might not attract as many deposits as the rate leaders. First Arkansas Bank & Trust is a good example. The top rate is 4.44% APY, but this applies to balances up to $50K. Their last rate cut was February 7, 2008 (see post).

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.

  Tags: AmericaNet Bank, Redneck Bank, Evantage Bank, savings account

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Comments
7 Comments.
Comment #1 by Geoff (anonymous) posted on
Geoff
Are the Redneck Bank's sister banks also its mother, daughter, and aunt banks?

1
Comment #2 by Snippy (anonymous) posted on
Snippy
No, Geoff, you're thinking of Hillbilly Bank.

Redneck Bank keeps its working ATMs on top of its old, broken ATMs.

:o)

1
Comment #3 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Ever notice how Jeff Foxworthy and Yakov Smirnoff are never in the same place at the same time? Spooky!

1
Comment #4 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
That's it, I'm outta there. Poor customer service, lousy on-line interface, and now rates no better than many others. C'ya....

1
Comment #5 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
It was nice while it lasted, but I'm also seriously considering getting out as well. For me, it's the obstacles to setting up inter-bank links for ACH that's a reason to close the mega money market now that it's no longer a rate leader. However, before bidding America Net adieu, I'll wait long enough to see whether Clear Sky Savings rate remains at least no lower than America Net's mega money market. That's assuming I don't close my accounts at both banks.

1
Comment #6 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Me too I'm closing this account asap, transfers take forever to go through everything just takes too long, problably closing this account would take forever too. I just hope there is no fee to close the mega money market aacount.Anyone knows?

1
Comment #7 by Virginia (anonymous) posted on
Virginia
I am also planning to close my account at AmericaNet bank. The lower rates plus the $10K cap makes the account too unattractive. I've also had continuing problems with their web interface, included repeated and ongoing difficulties getting my statements, which is a deal breaker in itself. Would NOT recommend this bank or any of its relatives.

1