Several readers have been notified by WTDirect that they will be receiving an additional 0.20% interest on top of WTDirect's standard savings account rate for six months starting on October 15, 2010. I called WTDirect and asked about the criteria for this bonus. According to the CSR, it is targetted to those who participated in the May promo in which customers could have earned up to $500.
This is a nice perk, and it's something that WTDirect has done before. WTDirect had a similar promo back in 2008. When the time period required for the bonus ended, they bumped up the interest rate for 4 months by another half percent for those customers.
In this new interest rate bonus, the extra 0.20% increases the current 1.21% APY to 1.41% for the 6 months (assuming the standard yield remains at 1.21%). That's around the level of the top internet savings accounts (those without a cap). I'm sure WTDirect hopes this will prevent a mass exodus of these customers.
Any banks that offer new-account bonuses or special CD rates always have to figure out how to retain those customers after the bonus requirements are met and the special CD matures. I'm sure a certain percentage of those customers will keep their money at the bank if the account has some level of competitive features and/or rates. For the bank there's a trade-off between the cost of keeping the accounts competitive vs. the cost of losing the customers.
Poll Question: Will You Stay?
For those who participated in the May promo and received this new offer, do you plan to keep your money in the account? Or is the extra rate not good enough? Please let us know your plans in the poll and in the comments.
Internet Savings Account Features
In addition to interest rates, the internet account features at WTDirect may encourage some to stay. It has a solid ACH bank-to-bank transfer service that can act as a useful hub account to transfer funds to and from other banks. I described many of these features in my May review. WTDirect's FAQs describes all of these bank-to-bank transfer features better than I've seen any other internet bank describe them. So if you're looking for a good internet bank account hub, you might want to open a WTDirect savings account even when there's no bonus.
WTDirect's Twitter Apple iPod Giveaway
WTDirect has a simple iPad sweepstakes. All you have to do is follow them on Twitter and keep an eye for a direct message around the 10th of each month. Details are available at
And while you're following WTDirect on Twitter, please consider following DepositAccounts.com at
WTDirect is a division of Wilmington Trust FSB. You can confirm this at Wilmington Trust's FDIC page which lists www.wtdirect.com as the bank's primary internet web address. The bank has an overall health score of 3 out of 5 with a Texas Ratio of 20.57% (above average) based on 6/30/10 data. Please refer to our financial overview of Wilmington Trust FSB for more details.