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GMAC Bank's Online Savings Account Yield Back Up to 3.75%


Update 3/13/09: New lower rates: Online Savings: 2.50% APY, Money Market: 2.00% APY. Refer to GMAC Bank's website for the latest CD rates.

GMAC Bank increased the yield today on its new Online Savings Account back to 3.75% APY. It was just last week when it had reduced it from 3.75% to 3.60%.

Update: A commenter just brought to my attention another change at GMAC Bank that I had missed this morning. There is no longer a $500 minimum opening deposit, and there is no longer a $500 minimum balance to avoid monthly fees. Only $1 is required to open either the Money Market Savings Account or the Online Savings Account. All balances now earn the same interest rate.

GMAC Bank also increased CD rates for several terms. Below is a list of the old and new CD rates:

Old and New GMAC Certificate of Deposit Yields as of 10/24/08

Term Old APY New APY Change
3 months 3.25% 3.50% +0.25
6 months 4.00% 4.00% -
9 months 3.90% 3.92% +0.02
12 months 4.35% 4.36% +0.01
18 months 4.25% 4.40% +0.15
24 months 4.35% 4.50% +0.15
36 months 4.50% 4.55% +0.05
48 months 4.75% 4.75% -
60 months 5.00% 5.15% +0.15

GMAC Bank's FAQ page does a pretty good job describing the CD details. Please refer to my GMAC CD review post for a summary of GMAC's CD features.

As I mentioned two weeks ago when the OSA first reached 3.75% APY, GMAC Bank first launched this OSA in September. It has the same features as the Money Market Savings Account except the OSA has no check writing and no debit card. The advantage over the MMSA is a higher yield. The MMSA yield remains at 3.00% APY.

I reviewed the OSA in this September post, and I included my experience opening this account. At that time it was only for existing customers. Now the OSA application is available at GMAC's website, and anyone can apply.

For more details about GMAC's OSA, please refer to GMAC's OSA page or my account review.

Rate increase after only one week?

It seems strange that GMAC Bank would raise this rate back to 3.75% APY after it just lowered the rate to 3.60% last Friday. Is it a sign of how much they need deposits? GMAC Bank's parent, GMAC, has been financially stressed with its home lending unit, Residential Capital (ResCap) and it's having a difficult time now with auto loans. This editorial on GMAC paints a grim picture. I do not agree with the author's third sentence that "smart depositors will flee its small bank." As we've seen with IndyMac and WaMu, there is no reason for depositors under the FDIC limits to worry. And with the new FDIC limits of $250K (see post) more deposits are now insured.

There was some concern early in the year that GMAC may be forced to divest GMAC Bank or to terminate the FDIC status. As this MarketWatch article describes, this issue was resolved in July when the FDIC granted GMAC a 10-year waiver.

GMAC Bank's financial ratings for soundness have gone down a bit, but they remain decent: 3 stars (performing) at Bankrate.com and 3.5 stars (good) at BauerFinancial. Both are based on 6/30/08 data.

Rate History:
03/13/09: OSA 2.50%, MMA 2.00%
03/06/09: OSA 2.65%, MMA 2.15%
02/06/09: OSA 2.75%, MMA 2.25%
01/17/09: OSA 3.00%, MMA 2.50%
10/24/08: OSA 3.75%
Related Pages: CD rates, savings account

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  |     |   Comment #1
It appears that PNC is taking over National City Bank. Big Hank may have had a hand in this deal
  |     |   Comment #2
GMAC's new CD rates meet or exceed E-Loan's rates. Coincidence?
  |     |   Comment #3
Gmac Sucks. I pulled all my money out. Maybe thats why they raised their sh&&ty rates again. **** THEM. Their ACH push takes a long time to go into effect too. I just opened an account with them about 2 weeks ago and I havent earned a cent yet. Closing account once my money goes back into my bank.
  |     |   Comment #4
Try Dollar Savings Direct:

4% interest compounded daily
fast next day ach
signup took me 5 mins
link your current checking

Looks like outflows at GMAC increased when they lowered their rate to 3.60. They need cash!
  |     |   Comment #5
Ken, you may also want to mention that the bank has now lowered the minimum blance requirement. Opening and maintaining balances need only be $1, so the $500 minimum has been removed.
  |     |   Comment #6
WOW that's great news
no more $500 min balance
Now I am considering opening the saving acct since I have a couple CD with them it will be easier to close and transfer to the savings account.

good catch kevin!
  |     |   Comment #7
Opened in seconds :)
already had an external account to initiate the funding.

My Account is already showing the Online Savings :)
Is the ACH limit of 6 also include external pull?
Banking Guy
  |     |   Comment #8
Kevin, Thanks for noting this. That is a very nice change. I just added an update.

Shrazzy, about the ACH, I believe the limit of 6 does include withdrawals initiated externally. Also note, I think an internal transfer (i.e. from the MMS to OSA) counts as one of the 6 withdrawals. So that's another thing to watch out for.

However, I was told that the OSA and the MMS are treated separately for this requirement. So you can have 6 withdrawals in a month on your MMS and 6 on your OSA without a fee. It's another reason to have both.
  |     |   Comment #9
When I called today, the GMAC representative told me that the minimum balance only needs to be $0.01 (a penny), not $1.00 (a dollar).
  |     |   Comment #10
I have a substancial amount of money on CDs at GMAC. I love this bank and its very easy to navigate, never had a problem. When I call customer service I find them to be very helpful. They have to be if they want to remain in business.
  |     |   Comment #11
I love GMAC online customer service response within 24H just like E*TRADE. Anyone know how many days is the available funds wait? Like 3-business days?
  |     |   Comment #12
I initiated a pull on Monday night; funds in my account Tuesday morning and available Thursday morning.
  |     |   Comment #13
I read the GMAC review at bankaholic.com http://www.bankaholic.com/bank-reviews/?bankID=3
One reviewer said that GMAC will sell your name info to others.
Does anyone have any comments about this?
  |     |   Comment #14
I just called GMAC. I was told that GMAC will do a soft pull from my credit, which will hurt my credit points, if I open a savings account. I was also told that I will get those points back after a few months. Does anyone know anything about soft pull and how it works? Does all bank does a credit pull?
Banking Guy
  |     |   Comment #15
Soft credit pulls typicaly don't hurt your credit score. This Fatwallet thread has a good description of hard and soft pulls. But note that it's old and some of the banks listed may have changed their policies on the type of pull. I think GMAC was one that used to do a hard pull, but I didn't get a hard pull when I became a customer in 2006.
  |     |   Comment #16
If you have a fraud alert on your credit file, be prepared to wait several weeks to open an account with GMAC bank. I was not able to apply online because GMAC could not do a soft pull on my credit. I was told to fax in my information and my account would be open in 4-6 business days. However, I have been waiting over 2.5 weeks and my account is still not open.
  |     |   Comment #17
Rate now 3.25% and Money Market rate now down to 2.75%
  |     |   Comment #18
3.00% APY OSA and 2.50% APY MMS

This bank has the best customer service (I had same day response on email inquiry) and best online banking system. Unlimited ACH links, max ACH transaction is $100,000. Online experience is very streamlined & fast with no obnoxious advertising. There are no hidden gotcha's in their disclosures, like so many banks sleaze in today, and the first 50 checks are free. No fees, no rules created to trick you into paying fees.
They are well-known for raising and dropping rates to both ends of the scale, so have to keep an eye on it.
  |     |   Comment #19
Rate just dropped to 2.75% APY. MMS rate also dropped to 2.25%.
  |     |   Comment #20
online savings account down to 2.5%.
money market savings down to 2%.
  |     |   Comment #21
Wish I would have opened this acct. instead of ETrade savings a few months ago. It is now down to .95%. Not competitive.

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