Citizens Bank is offering a promotion that includes a short-term CD special and a special credit card cash-back deal. It's called the "Get the Value of Five." The promotion is scheduled to end on 9/28/2012. Here's the link to the Citizens Bank promo page. Citizen's Bank branches which are branded as Charter One have this same promo. Here's the link to the Charter One promo page. Hat tip to DA reader Kaight who posted on this deal in this forum thread. More details about this promo is available in this FW thread.
Both the CD special and the credit card promo require that a new customer first open a personal checking account with a minimum opening balance of $500.
The following are the details of the CD special as listed at the promo page:
- 5.00% APY 5-month CD
- Minimum deposit: $1,000
- Maximum deposit: $5,000
- Only one CD can be opened per household
- CD must be opened in a branch
According to the offer's small print, the new checking account must be kept active. Below are all of the details about what is considered an active checking account:
An active checking account is defined as having 5 qualifying payment transactions that post and clear your account per statement period. Qualifying payments from your account include ATM withdrawals and payments made in our branches, payments made using our Online Banking service, Debit Card purchases, checks paid and automatic electronic payments to a third party. Transfers to your checking, savings, and money market accounts are excluded. Online Banking transfers to Business loans or credit lines do not qualify.
If you deposit $5,000, you'll earn about $104. If you kept that $5,000 in a savings account earning 1%, you'll earn about $83 more in this special CD. Both the low maximum and the short maturity reduces the benefits of the 5% APY. Nevertheless, it's nice to see a 5% APY, but you should see this more as a checking account bonus rather than a competitive CD.
Credit Card Promotion
You may be able to earn more money from the credit card promotion than the CD special. The credit card offer allows you to earn 10% cash back on gas, grocery and drug store purchases with a new CashBack Platinum MasterCard for the first 90 days. You'll earn 1% on all other purchases. If you just open the credit card without the checking account, the cash back is 5% for these categories. After the 90-day promotion period, you will earn 1% cash back on all purchases.
Here's an important part of the small print about when the 90-day promo period begins:
Your 90-day promotional offer will start on the date your account is approved, allowing up to an additional 20 days for you to receive and activate your card. Once you have applied for an account you will be notified of the status within 30 days.
The last part of this promotion is 0.51% discount on a Citizens Bank Home equity line of credit (HELOC). Refer to the promo page for those details.
The checking account has potential monthly fees. This Citizens checking page shows the fees and how to have the fees waived for all of the checking accounts. The Green Checking appears to be the best one. The monthly fee is $9.99 unless you maintain a $1,500 average daily balance or have 5 qualifying payment transactions per month. This monthly fee used to be only $4.99 last year.
According to the small print, the offer is "available in select markets only." Citizens Bank branches are located in Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont.
Citizens Bank Overview
Citizens Bank is part of the $130 billion bank holding company, Citizens Financial Group, which is headquartered in Providence, Rhode Island. Its two bank subsidiaries are RBS Citizens, N.A. and Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania. These banks operate a 12-state branch network under the Citizens Bank brand in the Northeast and the Charter One brand in Illinois, Michigan and Ohio.
RBS Citizens, N.A. has an overall health score at DepositAccounts.com of 5 stars (out of 5) with a Texas Ratio of 6.58% (excellent) based on June 2012 data. Please refer to our financial overview of Citizens Bank for more details.
Other Bank Bonuses
We have a bank promotions page with a table of all of the active bank and credit union promotions. You can filter the table based on the type of promotion and based on your state. I have more details about how to use this page in this blog post.