In a Forum post last week, DA reader, tbc3, noted that,
So Comenity Direct seems to be increasing their
rates, despite the industry slashing rates everywhere.
As I noted in yesterday’s Liquid Summary, Comenity Direct is one of a handful of online banks that have changed the trajectory of their rates with modest increases, partially reversing rate cuts made in early March. In doing so, Comenity Direct seems to have joined other online banks that are stretching out their transition to low rates.
Almost a year ago, Comenity Direct (an online division of Comenity Capital Bank) unveiled its High-Yield Savings Account (HYSA), with an initial 2.48% APY. Between the end of June 2019 and the beginning of March, the HYSA lost 93 bps in seven rate drops. The good news is that last week, Comenity Direct added 15 bps to the HYSA, resulting in 1.70% APY on balances between $100 and $10 million. That new APY puts the HYSA securely in the upper third of the current Liquid Summary’s ranking of Savings and Money Market Accounts.
The banks that have been making some recent rate hikes are heavy into credit cards, including Amex and Merrick Bank (recognized as a top-20 issuer of VISA® cards), as well as Comenity Bank. According to a very recent Crediful article,
Comenity Bank is a financial services company that offers credit cards through national retail chains to consumers around the country. In fact, the 30-year old company has more than 50 million card members through its various credit card programs.
This concentration on credit cards may also explain why these banks don’t have the best Texas Ratios. The higher the non-current loan balances are, the higher (and worse) the Texas Ratio will be. Non-current credit card balances are probably always higher than non-current balances on other types of loans, and non-current credit card balances are likely to rise as job losses increase. This may also explain the recently increased deposit rates: if larger credit card balances are expected, more money in deposits may be required.
High-Yield Savings Account Details
The minimum opening HYSA deposit is $100. Deposits can be made by check, ACH, wire transfer, or transfer from another Comenity Direct account. There is no limit on the number of external accounts that can be linked. The average hold time for an ACH transfer is between 1-3 business days, with hold times for larger amounts (six figures plus) being slightly longer.
This is a “true” savings account with no ATM/debit card; any withdrawals must be made through ACH or wire. There are no dollar limits on ACH transfers, either on withdrawals initiated through the Comenity Direct or initiated by an external bank. There is no excessive transaction fee for withdrawals in excess of the standard six withdrawals per statement cycle, because withdrawals beyond the six are not permitted. If you do attempt to make a seventh withdrawal, Comenity Direct may “deny and/or reject the transfer, and we may close your Account.”
The Deposit Account Terms document provides a great deal of useful information about the ins-and-outs of Comenity Direct transactions.
While a Comenity Direct account is fee-free (including free monthly maintenance, ACH transfer, online statements, and incoming wire transfers), there are three fees which can be charged:
- $5 per request for paper statements
- $15 per request for paper check withdrawal
- $25 per request for outgoing wires
Unlimited payable-on-death (POD) beneficiaries are allowed. Social Security numbers are NOT required for beneficiaries and percentages can be designated. Charities/non-profits cannot be named as a beneficiary, but trusts can be named.
Comenity Direct CDs
Comenity Direct also raised the rates on its shorter-term CDs, with 10 bps added to the 1- and 2-year CDs, and 5 bps to the 3-year CD. The new APYs themselves are not a cause for celebration, but the upward rate movement is definitely note-worthy.
|0.85%||$1.5k||$10m||Comenity Direct||3-Year CD|
|0.75%||$1.5k||$10m||Comenity Direct||2-Year CD|
|0.63%||$1.5k||$10m||Comenity Direct||1-Year CD|
Headquartered in Wilmington, Delaware, Comenity Direct offers accounts to U.S. citizens or resident aliens, 18 years or older, who have a valid Social Security number and a current street address in the U.S. (no PO Boxes allowed).
Only individuals may open a Comenity Direct sole or joint ownership account. Custodial accounts and trust accounts are not permitted, but as mentioned above, trusts can be named as a beneficiary.
As an internet division of Comenity Capital Bank, Comenity Direct has no brick-and-mortar branches. Opening a High-Yield Saving Account or CD can only be done online.
As an online brand of Comenity Capital Bank, Comenity Direct operates under Comenity Capital Bank’s FDIC Certificate and shares its financial history.
Comenity Direct/Comenity Capital Bank has an overall health grade of "B+" at DepositAccounts.com, with a Texas Ratio of 17.79% (above average) based on December 31, 2019 data. In the past year, the Bank increased its total non-brokered deposits by $33.25 million, an excellent annual growth rate of 14.36%. Please refer to our financial overview of Comenity Direct/Comenity Capital Bank (FDIC Certificate # 57570) for more details.
While Comenity Direct is the newest member of the Comenity family, Comenity Bank and Comenity Capital Bank have 30 years of experience of providing financial services. Originally known as World Financial Capital Bank, Comenity Capital Bank is currently Utah’s tenth largest bank, with assets in excess of $13.9 billion and more than 836,000 customer accounts.
The above rates are accurate as of 4/1/2020.
To search for the best CD rates, both nationwide and state specific, please refer to our CD rates table page.