Banking Deals of the Week: Sept. 1

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There is another strain of good news for the economy, one that adds another potential ingredient for a more a stable financial picture, and that could contribute to better bank rates if it proves sustainable.

It’s the latest consumer confidence number, which was better than most expected. According to the Conference Board, the August number clocked in at 53.5 — higher than the 50 level most economists predicted.

Though viewed as a “short-term” blip by the Board, short-term confidence is better than no confidence at all. Still, the Board isn’t too excited. "Employment concerns continue to weigh heavily on consumers' attitudes," said Lynn Franco, director of Conference Board's consumer research center, in a statement. "Expectations about future business and labor market conditions have brightened somewhat, but overall, consumers remain apprehensive about the future.

Some further good news — there are faint signs of consumer confidence heading upward for more than just one month. The Conference Board also reports that the July consumer confidence index was upwardly revised to 51.0 from a prior estimate of 50.4.

Now, onto the best Deals of the Week for the start of September:

Checking Account

Let’s light this candle with a new offer from a big bank — Bank of America’s (Stock Quote: BAC) $75 offer to open a new MyAccess Checking Account online.

Here are some benefits attached to the deal:

  • No monthly maintenance fee.
  • Bank of America Visa debit card with zero liability protection.
  • Access to nationwide ATM’s with no service fees and 24/7 customer service.

Just fund your new checking account with $125 within 30 days of opening the account. And after that, you’ll receive the $75 within 90 days of opening it.

Make sure to use the Offer Code: CH750L1 when you begin. The offer is good through Dec. 4.

For more information, check out BankofAmerica.com.

Free Checking

From a big bank to a small one, this time with a 4% interest rate on a free personal checking account from Cambridge Savings Bank.

It’s part of the bank’s “Supersmart Checking” program, and it comes not only with the great rate, but with free ATM access with unlimited ATM surcharge refunds.

The offer is only good for deposits up to $25,000.

And there are some hoops to jump through. You’ll need to do the following:

  • Make 10 debit card transactions per month.
  • Sign up for electronic statements.
  • Sign up for direct deposit.

You’ll also need to open the account with a minimum balance of $100. But other than that, it’s a pretty basic deal – with a great interest rate.

Check it out at CambridgeSavings.com.

Auto Loans

JPMorgan Chase (Stock Quote: JPM) is out with a new offer from its auto loan division.

Car loan borrowers can earn $100 cash-back through Sept. 30 on all auto loan applications through Chase.

As usual, there are some hurdles to clear. You can’t, for example, pay off the auto loan within the first 12 months. Here are the rest of the details.

  • You can’t be late on payments (any payment more than 10 days late disqualifies you).
  • You can only get the $100 cash back after opening a loan through a Chase branch, over the phone, or at Chase.com. Applying through a car dealership will bounce you from the deal.
  • You must sign up to have your monthly auto loan payments automatically deducted from a Chase personal checking account at loan origination and it must be in effect at the end of the month that your 12th monthly auto loan payment is due.

Get the whole story at Chase.com.

—For the best rates on loans, bank accounts and credit cards, enter your ZIP code at BankingMyWay.com.

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