5.39% Savings Account at an Ohio Bank (Emerald)


Emerald Bank of Dublin is offering a 5.39% APY savings account called the Emerald Prime Savings Account. The rate is guaranteed for life to always be WSJ Prime Rate minus 3.00%. The minimum deposit is $500, and it requires a balance of $500 to earn interest and to avoid a $5/month fee. One negative to this account is that interest is paid quarterly, and if you close the account, you lose the accrued interest that hasn't yet been paid. Another negative is that there's no ATM access.

A reader who had opened this account mentioned some additional details:
They now have online banking. Although they charge to initiate an ACH transfer, they do not charge or block transfers initiated elsewhere. So I use Cap1. They are still ranked by Bankrate as only 2 of 5 starts, they were recently acquired by Middlefield Banking Company (OH), which has a 5 star rating (they're planning to continue operating under the Emerald Bank name). They also have a free checking.

I contacted the bank by email regarding if this savings account can be opened by mail. They prefer if cusomters personally visit the branch to open an account. Although they don't specifically exclude account applications by mail, they're only a small one branch community bank. So they wouldn't be able to handle a national demand (which may be significant with a competitive savings account product like this).

The bank is located in Dublin, Ohio. It was established in 2004, and is FDIC insured (FDIC Certificate # 57550).

Thanks to the reader Gary who mentioned this savings account in the comments of the finding deals post.
SVG   |     |   Comment #1
Banking Guy,

>>The rate is guaranteed for life to always be WSJ Prime Rate minus 3.00%.

From the foot-note at their web-site is appears as if max they will offer is 7%.

>>The rate is guaranteed for life to always be WSJ Prime Rate minus 3.00%.

Err ... I assume that if WSJ Prime Rate drops below 3%, then they will make their rate 0%, rather than negative ! *smile* ... Making it negative will mean the customer will have to pay the bank interest !

Overall this product appears to be an innovative product. I like it. Let us see if they let out-of-state customer open an account using mail.