Banking 
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comments

Ten Largest Banks in the U.S.

The Move Your Money campaign peaked a few weeks ago but in our household we still haven’t yet made the change from a large bank to a local community bank or credit union. Part of the reason is inertia, the center spoke in our financial network map if our Bank of America account, but we’re working on it! :)

As I was doing some research for some unrelated projects, I discovered a useful resource at the FDIC. I’m always a fan of mostly useless trivia (this certainly falls in that category) so I was delighted to find a list of the largest banks in the United States. The FDIC captures all of this data for FDIC insured institutions, which is great, but it’s only updated annually, so this data is from June 30, 2011.

I bet you can name most of the banks on this list but I’d be surprised if you could name them all.

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 Credit 
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Best Zero Percent Balance Transfers (Updated May 2011)

As the economy improves, I expect to see a lot more activity in the balance transfer space. For the moment, there hasn’t been much change from April to May. Citi ended the Citi Dividend Platinum Select MasterCard’s promotion they launched last month (0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 months and 0% Intro APR on Purchases for 12 months) but extended the limited time offer that included $100 cash back after $500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. This matches compares very favorably to the Chase Freedom offer, which offers the same bonus and similar introductory periods.

Here are this month’s best 0% balance transfer offers:

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 Bank Deals 
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Chase Checking $100 Cash Bonus Coupon

ChaseChase has been offering $100 bonuses for new checking accounts every month like clockwork. If you need a Chase checking account, there’s no reason why you wouldn’t take advantage of free money. A bank deal doesn’t get any easier than this one!

As usual, the requirements for this offer are the same – open a Chase checking account with at least $100 of new money and setup a direct deposit or make 5 debit purchases within 60 days. Most banks will usually require you to do both (setup direct deposit and make 5 debit purchases) in order to receive a bonus but Chase doesn’t, completing either will be sufficient. The only “negative” about this deal is that you must open an account at a branch.
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 Bank Deals 
46
comments

$100 Chase Checking Account Bonus for June 2010

ChaseIt’s another month and another promotion from Chase Bank. This time it’s a $100 cash bonus if you open an account, setup a direct deposit or make 5 debit purchases. From the looks of it, it’s the same offer as last month only with a new expiration date. All you need to do is visit the promotion page and request that a coupon be mailed to you. Take the coupon to a Chase branch, satisfy the requirements, and bank your new Benjamin.

Specifics:
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 Personal Finance 
30
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Grand Plan: How to Make $1000 Risk Free

Stack of Cash
How would you like to make $1000 risk free starting with just $1? It sounds too good to be true right? It sounds like a scam? Well, 99.999% of the time it’s a scam. This is that 0.001% time it isn’t and when you read through my Grand Plan, you’ll know it’s not a scam.

You won’t get rich with the Grand Plan, you’ll just get a little bit ahead. What you do with your new found wealth is up to you – you can pay off some high interest debt, you can put it in a high yield savings account, you can put it in the stock market, or you can just hide the money in your house somewhere. Whatever you do, please don’t squander it. Once you do the steps on this list, chances are you won’t be able to do it again. Don’t waste it.

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 Bank Deals 
25
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New Chase $100 Checking Account Bonus

ChaseThis promotion has ended.

If you’ve been thinking about opening a checking account at Chase, then they’ve announced a new checking account promotion that is perfect for you. How about $100 to open a checking account with at least $100 in new money to Chase, 5+ debit card transactions in 60 days (or a direct deposit), and keep that account open for 6 months. Then a cool hundred is deposited into your account 10 days after meeting those requirements. This is one of the few promotions that doesn’t require a direct deposit, which is pretty rare.

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 Banking 
61
comments

Best Free Checking Accounts

Blank CheckbookIf you were to build your personal finances from the ground up, the checking account would be the first “product” you’d pick. If you’ve ever drawn your financial network map, you’ll remember that the checking account is the spoke in your primarily hub-and-spoke layout. Your paycheck is deposited into your checking account, your savings accounts are linked to your checking account, and when it’s time to pay credit cards or the mortgage, chances are the money comes from your checking account.

So if you were to rebuild your personal finances or build it from scratch, the first step is finding a checking account that fits your needs. For me, I need a checking account to be free, have plenty of ATMs, and no minimum balance. If your bank doesn’t offer that as a minimum, I’d find one that does.

So how do you find the best free checking account?

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 Personal Finance 
12
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Opt Out of Credit Card Internal Marketing

Junk mail only!We recently received a new Privacy Notice from Citi for 2009, which looked a lot like this online form, and never really appreciated how marketing happens behind the scenes. I implicitly understood that there was some marketing involved but when it’s all spelled out in a privacy document it can be a little disconcerting because the document pretty much covers every potential type of marketing, not the ones they actually do.

For example, they talk about sharing information with other companies in the Citigroup family thought I’ve never received a solicitation from another company at Citi. They also talk about third party nonaffiliated companies, but I’ve also never received anything there (probably because I opt out of junk mail as part of our do it yourself identity theft protection)

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