Dedicated to Deposits: Deals, Data, and Discussion

GMAC Bank Changes Name to Ally Bank - New 2.50% 9-Month No-Penalty CD

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Ally Bank

Update 3/03/10: Savings Account and MMA APYs have fallen to 1.30% (were 1.39%). No-penalty CD APY has fallen to 0.99%. Refer to Ally Bank's website for the latest rates.

GMAC Bank has changed its name to Ally Bank with a new website at Ally.com. With all the bad press related to GM and GMAC, I guess the bank decided it needed to separate itself from GMAC. However, Ally Bank remains "part of the GMAC family of companies." Here's a press release describing this change.

The old website, gmacbank.com, now points to ally.com (they also have allybank.com). They must have paid quite a bit to get this 4-letter domain name. The new website seems to be fully functional. I just logged into my account, and everything seems okay. I don't know if this is new to this website, but they now allow you to select electronic statements if you don't want paper statements mailed. Also, you can set up alerts to warn you with an email when the balance falls below a certain level.

The savings account and money market account rates and features appear to have remained the same. They continue to have no minimum balance requirements and no fees. This was implemented several months ago. There used to be a $500 minimum balance to avoid a monthly fee.

For the certificates of deposit, they removed the minimum balance requirements. You can now open a CD with $0. I'm not sure why anyone would want to open a CD with less than $100. If a CD rate is 1% higher than a savings account rate, you would only make $1 more per year with $100.

The CD rates remain the same except for the 9-month CD which has a very competitive rate of 2.60% APY. The 1-year CD rate continues to be one of the best rates in the nation with a 2.80% APY. I have more info on the CDs in this previous post.

New No-Penalty CD

There's a new No-Penalty CD with a 9-month term. The rate is 2.50% APY which is very competitive even without the no-penalty feature. Here's how the No-Penalty CD FAQ describes this feature:

you can withdraw your money 6 days after funding - and anytime thereafter - and you won't be charged a fee. Just remember, if you do make an early withdrawal it must be for the full balance plus all interest earned.


And they seem to make it easy to withdraw the money. According to the FAQ, they accept instructions by phone, secure email or regular mail. Before this website change a reader had mentioned they were no longer accepting instructions for CD closures by their secure email.

One thing that has not change is they still don't offer IRAs. But they do offer some other types of accounts that not many online banks provide. According to their FAQ, they do allow custodial accounts and trust accounts.

I've had accounts at GMAC Bank for the last three years, and I've been very pleased with the bank. In addition to the history of competitive rates, they have one of the best ACH transfer services with fast transfers, short holds, and easy linking of new accounts.

I wonder how much the GMAC name had hurt the bank in attracting deposits. I'm sure with the bad publicity of GM and GMAC, depositors have been scared away. This has probably contributed to the high deposit rates they've been offering the last year. They were not always this competitive. If the new name helps, they may not have to be quite as competitive.

If GMAC goes bankrupt, what happens to Ally Bank? As I've mentioned before, if may not result in a bank failure. When Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy last year, Lehman Brothers Bank continued to operate (see post).

If you stay below the FDIC limits, there's not much to worry about. Ally Bank deposit accounts are FDIC insured (FDIC Certificate # 57803). On the new Ally website, there's a new page describing how you can go over the basic FDIC limits (currently $250K) and still be insured.

Rate History:

Update 3/03/10: Savings Account and MMA APYs have fallen to 1.30% (were 1.39%). No-penalty CD APY has fallen to 0.99%

Update 2/17/10: Savings Account and MMA APYs have fallen to 1.39% (were 1.44%)

Update 2/09/10: Savings Account and MMA APYs have fallen to 1.44% (were 1.49%)

Update 12/08/09: Savings Account APY has fallen to 1.50% (was 1.59%). MMA APY has fallen to 1.50% (was 1.55%).

Update 11/25/09: Savings Account rate has fallen to 1.59% (was 1.64%). MMA remains at 1.55% APY. 12-month CD remains at 1.90% APY.

Update 11/13/09: Rates have risen! Today's rates at Ally Bank: Savings Account - 1.64% APY (was 1.55%), MMA remains at 1.55% APY, 12-month CD - 1.99% APY (was 1.95%), no-penalty 9-month CD - 1.49% APY (was 1.50%).

Update 10/30/09: Rates have fallen. Today's rates at Ally Bank: Savings Account - 1.55% APY (was 1.70%), MMA - 1.55% APY (was 1.65%), no-penalty 9-month CD - 1.50% APY (was 1.60%), 12-month CD - 1.95% APY (was 2.00%).

Update 10/16/09: Rates have fallen. Today's rates at Ally Bank: Savings Account - 1.70% APY (was 1.80%), MMA - 1.65% APY (was 1.70%), no-penalty 9-month CD - 1.65% APY (was 1.75%), 12-month CD - 2.00% APY (was 2.05%).

Update 10/02/09: Rates have gone up! Today's rates at Ally Bank: Savings Account - 1.80% APY (was 1.75%), MMA - 1.70% APY, no-penalty 9-month CD - 1.85% APY, 12-month CD - 2.05% APY (was 2%).

Update 8/07/09: Today's rates at Ally Bank: Savings Account - 1.70% APY (was 1.75%), MMA - 1.65% APY (was 1.70%), no-penalty 9-month CD - 1.85% APY, 12-month CD - 2.00% APY.

Update 8/28/09: Today's rates at Ally Bank: Savings Account - 1.75% APY (was 1.70%), MMA - 1.70% APY (was 1.65%), no-penalty 9-month CD - 1.85% APY, 12-month CD - 2.00% APY.

Update 7/31/09: Today's rates at Ally Bank: Savings Account - 1.75% APY (was 1.85%), MMA - 1.70% APY, no-penalty 9-month CD - 1.90% APY, 12-month CD - 2.00% APY. Refer to Ally Bank's website for the latest rates.

Update 7/17/09: Today's rate cuts at Ally Bank include: Savings Account - 1.85% APY (was 1.95%), no-penalty 9-month CD - 1.90% APY (was 2.00%), 12-month CD - 2.05% APY (was 2.10%)

Update 7/10/09: Today's rates cuts at Ally Bank include: Savings Account - 1.95% APY (was 2.00%), Money Market Account - 1.70% APY (was 1.80%), no-penalty 9-month CD - 2.00% APY (was 2.05%), 12-month CD - 2.10% APY (was 2.25%)

Update 7/03/09: Today's Ally Bank rate cuts include: Money Market Account - 1.80% APY (was 1.85%), no-penalty 9-month CD - 2.05% APY (was 2.15%), 12-month CD - 2.25% APY (was 2.30%)

Update 6/19/09: Rates continue to drop: Savings account rate is now 2.00% APY. 12-month CD rate is now 2.30% APY, and the no-penalty 9-month CD rate is now 2.15% APY.

  Tags: Ally Bank, CD rates, savings account

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Comments
49 comments.
Comment #1 by Aleks (anonymous) posted on
Aleks
If you are an existing customer there is an issue with the website while opening the 9-months no-penalty CD account. I emailed them, let's see what they say.

1
Comment #2 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Any idea if they will still be sending the obnoxiously big welcome packet every time you open an account or CD? I have literally opened more than 30 CDs there over the past few years (always have one come due each month with my emergency fund $$) and continually just have to toss it. Other online banks I have dealt with have an online signature function for stuff like this. They could save a TON on money on paper, printing and postage costs by gaining this functionality.

1
Comment #3 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Thanks for the info. that online statements are now available. Less paper piling up at home is always better!

1
Comment #4 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Did they send a notice out about this website change? I think it would have been in their best interest to notify existing customer about the change, given the security risks that exist in the internet today.

1
Comment #5 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Notice, what notice, you don't need no stinkin notice.

It is pretty ridiculous to do something like this an not tell your customers well in advance. Also, the gmacbank site is not forwarding for me at this moment.

Things look fine at Ally.com, but I'm not impressed with how they did this.

1
Comment #6 by Rayle Shonie (anonymous) posted on
Rayle Shonie
Aside from the surprise they've thrown on their existing customers, this has to be a good move for GMAC to disassociate themselves. Especially since they are taking over financing for Chrysler too.

1
Comment #7 by RJM (anonymous) posted on
RJM
I got my welcome email at 12:34 pm today.

I was there last night with no mention of the new name.

Added a link at gmac and presidential with a rewards checking.
The presidential amounts showed up today. GMACs did not.

Dont see any downside to the 9 month no risk deal.

1
Comment #8 by Mary (anonymous) posted on
Mary
After discussing opening an account for an irrevocable trust – by email and phone, I sent the necessary documentation. All the papers and my voided checks were returned with a note that, no, they do not accept irrevocable trust accounts.

1
Comment #9 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Has anyone found Ally Bank's routing number? I couldn't find it on their website. If it is not the same as GMAC Bank's was (031176136), for how much longer can the old routing number be used? My mortgage servicer has instructions to do monthly ACH pulls from GMAC, and I was about to mail a GMAC check to pay my property taxes... the last thing I need is for those to bounce, as I'm in the middle of refinancing! =P

1
Comment #10 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Routing number: 124003116
Old routing is good until Nov 1, 2009. Hope this helps.

1
Comment #11 by ShraZZy (anonymous) posted on
ShraZZy
Ah man y did they have to change routing, now I have to change my ETRADE ACH for it.
By the way just got a mail for the changes. I like the FAQ section as you can do a search. Website looks good but I don't really like the purple color.

1
Comment #12 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
You shouldn't have to change your Etrade account. When the name change happened GMAC should have noticed all other banks. However, it;s doesn't hurt to check.

1
Comment #13 by Matt (anonymous) posted on
Matt
@Aleks,

I see the issue you are pointing out when you try to 'open account' from the no-penalty cd product page. You can get around this by going through the "Open Accounts" link and selecting "No-penalty CD" as the account type. I just did it without issue.

1
Comment #14 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I got the snail mail notification today. Nothing has changed, except the bank's name and the website URL. I don't know what all this talk is about concerning the bank's router number... Why would that ever need to change?

1
Comment #15 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
It is strange that they changed routing numbers. Is it mandated by law that once a bank changes name, that they must also change routing numbers?

1
Comment #16 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Shazzy: "Website looks good but I don't really like the purple color."

I agree. I just sent them a general feedback message complaining of the purple color. I hope more people write to them about it and let's get this annoying color changed.

1
Comment #17 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
From their FAQ,

Question
Will I still be able to write checks on my accounts?
Answer

Yes, if you have check-writing privileges now (Money Market Account and NOW), you can still write checks at any time - your GMAC bank checks will be honored until November 1, 2009. We will automatically send you your new Ally Bank checks with new routing numbers. You should begin to use them immediately and be sure to destroy your old checks. The new routing number on your checks is 124003116. Not an MMA or NOW customer? You need not take any action.

1
Comment #18 by Jim (anonymous) posted on
Jim
I doubt they had to pay too much for the domain name, given what was there before:

http://web.archive.org/web/*/http://www.ally.comSome of the later 2007 and 2008 entries are not safe for work, or are at least very questionable for work depending on what your work thinks about thong butts advertising "adult swingers."

1
Comment #19 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I like the purple website. But, that is very strange that they changed everything without notice.

1
Comment #20 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Would be nice if they let us know ahead of time that the site will be down.

not a fan of the new interface or about the new name....

1
Comment #21 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
The routing number is being changed NOT due to the name change but because of the change the bank went hrough when it bacame a holding company. The charter changed from PA to UT. Thus the routing number change. It would have happened even if GMAC had stayed GMAC.

1
Comment #22 by zip (anonymous) posted on
zip
Doesn't anyone have anything better to worry about than the purple color and routing numbers etc. Would they be willing to accept a .25 reduction in interest for a personalized color?
Gimmie a break!

1
Comment #23 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
You may be able to close the new 9 month no penalty CD via secure e-mail but I tried to close my existing 12 month cd through the secure e-mail system yesterday and was told they cannot accept instructions over e-mail and that I would have to call customer service.

1
Comment #24 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Banking Guy,thanks for posting this. I am new to CD purchasing and have been reading a lot about them. We have an inheritance that has has been sitting in a bank savings account for 3 months and is earning close to nothing. We plan on moving to Illinois soon and won't need these funds for at least a year, but things can happen. In reading about "laddering" cd's, can you offer some advice if you have 20k?
Also, does the proximity of where the cd's are and where you live have any negative impact?
And, how do you purchase and collect the funds (once matured?)I am old school and prefer walking into a brick and mortar building to do business.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

1
Comment #25 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Hey Zip 6:10 am, what's your problem with the color purple? It is a very pretty color. And, yes it is my biggest worry. Finally, I am going to give you a break, as you requested.

1
Comment #26 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I like the cool new name, colors and logo (it was pretty obvious they were going to change them). I signed up for the new no-penalty CD. I also changed to paperless statements(new).

They moved some things around. You change your account names by clicking "change nickname" next to the current name. You can't see your list of linked accounts until you click Transfer Funds.

Since I use cash-back credit cards to pay for nearly everything and auto-pay them directly from my Ally account, it's the only bank I need. My Visa Checkcard works at Aldi and it's great being able to use any ATM.

I actually like having two accounts. I only keep what I need in the MMA for checks and ATM/Checkcard so it's safer.

This really is the best bank around (tried several) with consistently high rates, fast transfers and unique features. I guess when your former parent has ruined your reputation (thanks UAW and Feds) you have to try harder.

1
Comment #27 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Very surprised that you've "been very pleased with the bank." I recently opened a Jumbo CD with them, sending all information, instructions, and funds, which arrived in their office on April 28. Since then, they have made six (6) major errors, none of which I was informed of and all of which I had to discover myself, originally by phoning in and then later by logging on. Two of these errors are still not corrected, though I've been told one will be by May 19, but they're still investigating the other. I think they have a serious competence problem with some of their personnel -- they need replacement/retraining there.

1
Comment #28 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I have never used CS except to find out my account numbers before the paperwork arrived. All my accounts were opened online and CDs funded from existing accounts. Same with all the other online banks I have used.

I assume CS will be incompetent. They claim they are putting extra effort into it. Let's hope so.

1
Comment #29 by foglifter (anonymous) posted on
foglifter
Thanks for your note about the new online statements feature, I asked them about it a few times in the past, finally they listened. And as one of the previous commenters mentioned I also have Savings and MMA accounts which makes it easy to write a check if needed. And I keep just a buck in my MMA!

I LOVE two things about Ally bank:
nice rate and superfast ACH transfers.

1
Comment #30 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
The routing number is 124003116 for checks.

http://www.ally.com/help/faqs/general.html

1
Comment #31 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
At least as of now I am finding that the new routing number is rejected as non-existent by other institutions' online tranfer systems, e.g. Alliant.

Ally's FAQs say it is not necessary to "contact other financial institutions linked to my account because my routing number is changing." But I wonder of this really applies only when using *Ally's* transfer system (as opposed to transfers from elsewhere where Ally is the target). The fact that old MMA checks will stop working on Nov 1 add to this suspicion. A lot of people could be in for nasty surprises if my suspicion is correct and they don't clarify.

Indeed, didn't their old FAQs have specific instructions about setting up your GMAC accounts on another bank's system? I though that's how I learned that you can't use the Online Savings Account as a push/pull target from elsewhere unless you tell the other bank that it is a checking account.

1
Comment #32 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Shrazzy, I know what you mean about the E*Trade hassle. If, as I suspect, we WILL have to end up giving other banks the new routing number, I'm cringing at the thought of dealing with E*Trade's painfully unique "secret lifetime maximum" -- especially since I have both MM and OSA at Ally.

1
Comment #33 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
The ally.com website is blocked by SonicWall as being a gambling site, so I am unable to access it.

-1
Comment #34 by ShraZZy (anonymous) posted on
ShraZZy
I added the new etrade ACH and worked well. I like how the new Ally site has a lot more information on the account when you click more details. Also the 24/7 phone is finally nice. I opened a 9month no penalty easily. The website has a little speed issue tho.

1
Comment #35 by white paws (anonymous) posted on
white paws
I LOVE THIS BANK!!!!!! LOVE THIS BANK!!!! LOVE THE COLOR THE WEB SITE. PRIOR TO THIS THE ORANGE BALL WAS SUPERIOR FOR QUICK AND EASY OPENINGS. Thier rates fell in the basement and under at the orange ball. There is no issue with a 9-month no-penalty. I have had not one problem with this bank. Open everything online in minutes, operators are smooth, fast, intelligent and highly skilled. Ally website is BETTER than the BALL!!!!! yeah yeah yeah ally bank for all the complainers get in the gas guzzler and go wait in the lobbby again like the old days.

1
Comment #36 by Tim (anonymous) posted on
Tim
Is there an OPT OUT option for their information sharing? Looks like they share your information with everyone!

1
Comment #37 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
The inability to optout was one reason I didn't use GMAC Bank. What do people think about the privacy policy? Should I open an account anyway?

1
Comment #38 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I tried to link the new Ally routing number to my credit card payment site. It doesn't recognize the new routing number as being correct. I hope they get this settled before long because I'm use to having my credit card bill paid automatically from my old GMAC money market account.

1
Comment #39 by Bejar (anonymous) posted on
Bejar
Just checked the website and the no-penalty CD rate dropped to 2.05% and the 1yr is now 2.25%. I locked in the 2.15% 9-mo no penalty CD - is this still a good deal and is the bank secure enough compared to all other places out there? I really like the no-penalty feature. Of course I will remain below FDIC limits. Thanks.

1
Comment #40 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Did you notice that the Bank Rate safe & soundness rating for Ally/GMAC was recently lowered to 2**. I know when I read your review and opened my account with them earlier this year they were rated 3***. Not sure why or when this lower rating was issued. I just stumbled upon it when checking other potential banks. Would having $250k in a 2** bank make you worry?

1
Comment #41 by Ace (anonymous) posted on
Ace
I have finally opened an MMA with Ally. My experience with them was fantastic.

1. top notch CSR. They try to make sure every issue was resolved. They answered all the questions that I had such as whether paying credit card bill (initiated from credit card website) is a check transaction or ACH transfer. It's the latter, which means you can do 6 of these.

2. unlimited # of linked accounts and fast ACH transfer. It has now become my transfer hub.

3. check writing. I don't have to transfer funds to checking account and lose interest any more in order to pay large bills such as mortgage, credit card bills. The MMA rate 1.70% is the same as my dollarsavingsdirect rate.

However, my minor complaint is if I initiate a transfer for tomorrow, I can't cancel it. I need to be extra careful when making transfers. And if I initiate a push transfer, it takes 2 days for fund to appear on the linked account. It takes 1 day for dollarsavingsdirect.

Overall, I'm pretty happy with Ally.

1
Comment #42 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
FYI, for the savings account it is a soft credit pull, according to the CSR (or "customer advocate" as they are called here).

1
Comment #43 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
OSA down to 1.55%, NPCD down to 1.50%

1
Comment #44 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Just closed a CD with them--they now force you to call them rather than accepting a secure email request, and then say it will take 2 business days to transfer the money to an Ally online savings account.

1
Comment #45 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Ally is not so straightforward.  Their account agreement states that when an account is closed between interest payments that interest will be paid "to date".  What is this "date"?  It's not the date of the closure, if that's what you're thinking,  because the agreement clearly states that interest is figured at the END of each day.  So in other words Your Interest Will Be Paid To The Day Before You Close Your Account.  Straightforward, huh?

If I get my final interest when I think I will, it will be a total of (12) days after I requested by phone a direct bank transfer of it.

If you are going to close an Ally CD be sure to do it by transfer to an Ally savings account.  Have the Ally savings account directly linked to your new savings account.  I hate to think of how much I would have lost if I hadn't done this.

Why bank with Ally for a savings account, anyway?  The Fed limits them from paying top dollar.  That's why they're mysteriously at least .01% less that comparable savings accounts.

I've been fine with American Express.  Withdrawls only take (1) day instead of (2).  Straightforward?

1
Comment #46 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Down to 1.25%

1
Comment #47 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Down to 1.25%

1
Comment #48 by Frank Dilst (anonymous) posted on
Frank Dilst
Anybody know where I can find their routing number?

1
Comment #49 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Was the name change the only thing to happen to GMAC?

1