It’s been about three months since I last wrote about the liquid accounts offered by California-based UFB Direct, which means I’m probably writing about new accounts! DA reader, PugPower, described the situation quite aptly:
UFB is up to its old tricks, making new account types with higher rates. This time we have the new "High Rate" Savings and MM accounts paying 3.83%APY. Existing account holders will need to call or chat to have their account converted to these new account types in order to receive the higher rate.
|3.83*%||-||-||UFB Direct||UFB High Rate Savings|
|3.83*%||-||-||UFB Direct||UFB High Rate Money Market|
The only differences between the new “High Rate” accounts and the newly retired “Elite” accounts are the new name and the higher APYs. Note, when these new accounts were introduced, new balance tiers were added with the highest APY requiring a $50k balance. However, UFB Direct decided to eliminate these rate tiers, and now all balances qualify for the top APY.
Here’s the most important part of this blog post – if you want to get the new rate, you have to contact UFB Direct to convert your account to the new account.
DA reader, 111, provided this helpful piece of information in a Forum post.
In addition to a call or chat to get your account converted, you can also log on to your account and send them a secure message. Worked fine last time.
The UFB Direct High Rate Money Market account is actually the sixth UFB Direct MMA I’ve written about in the past five years. UFB Direct has a history of adding new accounts with top rates, while maintaining the lower rates offered on established accounts. In the beginning of the April 2020, the UFB Premium Money Market (the predecessor of the UFB Money Market, the predecessor of the UFB Rewards Money Market, the predecessor of the UFB High Rate Money Market, the predecessor of the UFB Elite Money Market) offered 0.20% APY on balances of $25k and above. The Personal Deposit Account Agreement (dated November 8, 2022) has a section titled, “Legacy Account – No Longer Available” that contains two checking accounts, five savings accounts, and five Money Market accounts.
UFB High Rate Money Market and Savings Account Details
Since only the names and APYs have changed (again), much of the following has previously appeared in earlier UFB Direct blog posts.
According to the UFB High Rate MMA landing page, there is a $10 monthly maintenance fee if the daily average balance drops below $5k. If the UFB High Rate Money Market account is closed mid-cycle, any accrued interest will be forfeited.
According to CSR, the UFB High Rate Money Market account offers limited checking writing, with a free ATM card available upon request. There is a $10 Excessive Transaction/Withdrawal fee for each transaction/withdrawal beyond the standard six allowed.
If you exceed the transfer limits on more than an occasional basis, we may convert
your account to one not subject to transfer limitations or close your account.
Other than the UFB High Rate Money Market Account’s potential monthly maintenance fee and checking writing capabilities, there is essentially no difference between the UFB High Rate Money Market Account and the UFB High Rate Savings Account. As stated on the MMA landing page,
The UFB High Rate Money Market offers the security of a savings account with check-writing privileges.
According to CSR, there are limits on ACH transfers initiated through UFB Direct during the first six months following account opening: $10k per day and $25k per rolling month; thereafter, the limits are $100k per day and $250k per rolling month. The following is a comment made by DA reader, 111, as part of yesterday's Forum post discussion.
I've had a small free checking account with UFB for years. Each I time I have to request them to convert my savings account to a “new” savings account to get the higher rate (like today), I make sure I can still transfer internally to checking, with no limits. There are no “new account” ACH transfer restrictions on the checking account because it's not new. Also, of course, I can always transfer everything to checking and then write a check if I really want to vamoose. And in any case, I usually initiate the ACH (whether debit or credit) from another FI, where I know the rules and limits.
Many thanks to everyone who commented about UFB Direct’s latest accounts in yesterday’s Forum post.
Headquartered in San Diego, UFB Direct offers its product line to all U.S. citizens and resident aliens, 18 years or older, who have a valid Social Security number and valid form of identification. Like all UFB Direct accounts, a UFB Money Market Account or UFB Savings accounts must be opened online.
Deposits made to UFB Direct are held by Axos Bank (the former BofI Federal Bank), which is the oldest pure internet bank. With a strong financial history and assets in excess of $14.7 billion, Axos Bank is also part of the public company, Axos Financial, Inc.
In October 2018, BofI Federal Bank (previously known as Bank of Internet USA) became Axos Bank, with all its separate divisions rebranding as Axos, with the exception of UFB Direct, which remains a separate branch with its own website. UFB Direct operates under Axos Bank’s FDIC Certificate and shares its financial history.
As stated on the bottom of every page of the UFB Direct website,
All deposit accounts through Axos Bank brands are not separately insured by the FDIC
from other deposit accounts held with the same ownership and/or vesting at Axos Bank.
UFB Direct/Axos Bank has an overall health grade of "A" at DepositAccounts.com, with a Texas Ratio of 6.64% (excellent) based on June 30, 2022 data. In the past year, UFB Direct/Axos Bank has increased its total non-brokered deposits by $2.71 billion, an excellent annual growth rate of 26.17%. Please refer to our financial overview of UFB Direct/Axos Bank (FDIC Certificate # 35546) for more details.
Established in 2000, Axos Bank is currently the 14th largest bank headquartered in California and the 113th largest bank in the country with assets in excess of $16 billion and more than 394,000 customer accounts.
How the UFB High Rate Money Market Account and UFB High Rate Savings Account Compare
When compared to nationally available Money Market Accounts and Savings Accounts tracked by DepositAccounts.com, that do not require large balances or direct deposit and do not have small balance caps, the UFB High Rate Money Market Account and High Rate Savings Account APYs currently rank second. Note, Brilliant Bank just had a rate increase that moved it ahead of UFB Direct.
|APY||Account Name||Credit Union/Bank|
|4.01%||Money Market ($1k min/$500k max)||Brilliant Bank|
|3.83%||UFB High Rate Money Market Account (no min/no max)||UFB Direct|
|3.83%||UFB High Rate Savings Account (no min/no max)||UFB Direct|
|3.82%||Money Market Account (up to $1 million)||Merchants Bank of Indiana|
|3.75%||BrioDirect Saving Plus ($1k min)||BrioDirect|
|3.70%||CFG High Yield Money Market ($1k min)||CFG Bank|
|3.60%||Bask Interest Savings (no min)||Bask Bank|
The above information and rates are accurate as of 11/10/2022.