Is it a more competitive environment for bank interest rates? Our weekly look at the best rate deals indicates more and more good deals out on the marketplace.
And why not? With the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury rate approaching the much-preferred (by economists and certainly by bond investors) 3.5% interest rate level, banks are more inclined to raise rates on bank deposits, too.
Another key figure this week for bank rate deals is the latest retail sales number, and it’s a decent one (up 2.7% for August 2009). Of course, that’s still more than 5% lower than the retail sales number from the same period in 2008 (as calculated by the U.S. Census Bureau), but at least consumers seem to be coming back into spending mode, if on a limited basis.
Now, on to the deals.
Certificates of Deposit
Darby Bank is a Georgia-based financial institution with a creative idea – a “rate escalator” that rises to 5% from 3% during a three-year period.
The bank bills the program as having a CD ladder “built into your CD rate.”Here’s the deal:
- A $500 minimum deposit and balance required to earn stated Annual Percentage Yield (APY).
- The initial rate at account opening is 3% APY. Subsequent rate changes are as follows:
- On 8/15/2010 the rate will adjust to 4% APY
- On 8/15/2011 the rate will adjust to 5% APY.
On the downside, the early withdrawal penalty is a stiff one – one full year of interest – so if you’re in for a dime, be in for the whole dollar.
Darby Bank is a local bank, so you’ll have to contact them to see how customers outside the state can get in on the action.
Check it out here.