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Local Banks Are Sometimes Better


My previous post shows how much better online banks can be over your local banks. However, there are exceptions. Here's one. It's a bank based in Taylor Texas (about 30 miles northeast of Austin Texas) called City National Bank of Taylor (CNBT).

CNBT's Reward Savings Account has 3.78% APY with no monthy fees and no minimum balance (even better than HSBC!). However, there is a $100 minimum deposit requirement.

CNBT also offers a free checking account that pays 3.45% interest. It claims free checks, elimination of all ATM fees, free imaged checks online, and free online bank to bank transfers (probably using ACH). It does require direct deposit and at least 10 monthly VISA check card point-of-sale transactions. Here are the details.

It looks like CNBT has contracted with FundsXpress to provide online banking. They don't say this on their website, but if you click the link to open a new account application, you're taken to the website under the domain fundsxpress.com.

This seems similar to what EmigrantDirect does (EmigrantDirect is an online unit of Emigrant Savings Bank of New York.) If you notice when you log into your EmigrantDirect account, you'll see the top level domain name ibanking-services.com. This domain is owned my Metavante which provides electronic banking services. It's interesting that ED doesn't mention anything about Metavante. Perhaps they don't want you to know thay they've contracted out the online banking service.

But I don't see a problem with this. The smart local banks like CNBT and Emigrant Savings realize that they can offer their customers a lot more by using online banking services. These services allow the small banks to compete with the big banks like HSBC. It would be interesting to know how much FundsXpress and Metavante charge the banks for their services. I bet it's much less than starting new brick-and-mortar branches.

So keep an eye out for those smart local banks that give you the online banking perks along with the local service.

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