Update 11/01/10: The top rate has fallen to 2.78% APY. Please refer to the bottom of the post for the rate history.
HCSB, A State Banking Association is offering a high-yield reward checking account called HCSB Reward Checking. The account offers the following rates and features if certain monthly requirements are met:
- 2.78% APY on balances up to $25,000
- 0.75% APY on the portion of your balance above $25,000
- 0.05% base rate if requirements are not met
- Refunds ATM Fees up to $20 per cycle
Monthly requirements include:
- 12 debit card purchases
- 1 Direct Deposit or ACH auto debit
- Receive electronic statements
Additional features of this account include:
- $100 minimum initial deposit
- No monthly service fee
- No minimum balance
- Free online Bill Pay
I was told by a bank rep that a branch visit is currently required to open an account. However, they are working on a project that will allow them to accept applications from outside their typical market area. Update 12/8/2010: According to a HCSB rep, the account is no longer available nationwide. It's now limited to Texas residents. Update 3/09/2010: I've been notified by a HCSB's representative that the account is now available nationwide on CheckingFinder.com. The application is available at this CheckingFinder.com page.
Branches are located in the northwest Texas cities of Plainview, Tulia and Hart, and in the Texas Hill Country cities of Kerrville and Fredericksburg.
The bank's ratings for safety and soundness are a little above average: 3½ stars (good) at BauerFinancial and 3 stars (performing) at Bankrate.com. Both ratings are based on 9/30/09 financial data. The bank has been a FDIC member since 1934 (FDIC Certificate # 14562).
Make sure you don't get this bank confused with HSBC. Their official name is HCSB, but to avoid confusion I included "a State Banking Association" like they have on their website. The bank's About page describes where the name HCSB comes from:
Originally chartered under the name of Hale County State Bank in West Texas and later doing business as Hill Country State Bank in the Texas Hill Country
Other High-Yield Reward Checking Accounts
One nice thing about HCSB's reward checking account is that the rate for balances over $25K is fairly competitive at 1.51%. In fact, it's getting hard to find this rate on internet savings accounts.
Refer to the reward checking section of DepositAccounts.com to find reward checking accounts in your area or that are available around the nation.
- 2.78% APY up to $25K; 0.75% over
- 3.26% APY up to $25K; 1.01% over; 0.05% base
- 3.51% APY up to $25K; 1.51% over; 0.05% base