Best Illinois Money Market Rates

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Illinois has some of the top money market account rates. The national average money market rate is 0.23%. Illinois has many rates far above this level. In fact, Illinois has several banks with money market rates above 1.50% APY.

There must be something in the water in Illinois that's making the state's bankers a bit more generous than the rest of the country. Illinois has some of the top money market account rates. That's especially true of the Davenport area, where Reynolds State Bank and Buffalo Prairie State Bank are offering the two highest money market rates in the country. The national average money market rate is 0.23%. Illinois has many rates far above this level. In fact, Illinois has several banks with money market rates above 1.50% APY.

  • Reynolds State Bank leads the charge with a 1.61% APY money market account with a $2,500 minimum balance. This is the best money market rate in the country. The bank was founded in 1888 and is headquartered in Reynolds, IL, which is located just outside Davenport, near the Iowa border. The bank has a very low Texas Ratio of 2.10% versus the national average of 20.28%. A low Texas ratio is one indicator that a bank is financially stable (the lower the Texas ratio the better). Assets have grown from $59 million in 2006 to $98 million in 2011.
  • Buffalo Prairie State Bank isn't far behind with a 1.51% APY money market account. This is the second best money market rate in the country. The minimum balance for this account is $2,501. Buffalo Prairie was founded in 1920 and has one branch located in Bufallo Prairie, IL, right outside Davenport, near the Iowa border (anyone seeing a pattern here?). This bank also looks strong financially with a Texas Ratio of 1.92%. Assets have grown from $40 million in 2006 to $57 million in 2011.
  • The City National Bank Of Metropolis is offering a money market account that pays 1.26% APY with a $2,500 minimum balance. Founded in 1908, the bank has two branches at the souternmost part of the state near the Kentucky border. The bank's health ratios look strong with a Texas Ratio of 7.24%. Assets have grown from $189 million in 2006 to $338 million in 2011.
  • First National Bank In Taylorville is tied with the Washington Federal Bank For Savings. Both banks offer a 1.01% APY money market account. First National has a minimum balance of $2,500 while Washington Federal has a $1,000 minimum balance. First National is located near Springfield while Washington Federal has two branches near Chicago.

Don't Live Near These Banks?

Another option is to consider opening a savings/money market account online. Online savings and money market accounts offer attractive rates, low minimum balances, and the convenience of banking from home. Some featured accounts are:

  • American Express is offering 0.90% APY with a $0 minimum balance.
  • CNB Bank Direct is offering a 0.85% APY with a $1 minimum balance.
  • Clear Sky Accounts offering a 0.95% APY rate with a $1 minimum balance.

Getting the best rate makes a difference. To understand how earning half a percentage point can put a lot more money in your wallet over time, please visit our financial knowledge section. It pays to get the best rate.

Get the Best Illinois Bank Rates Via Email

Users can now register to receive the best bank rates for Illinois or any state via email every Monday. You can choose to either receive the best rates for banks across the country, or you can receive the best rates for your state. You can cancel delivery at any time and also login to change which product rates you receive for which state. This email service is free. You can register for the service here.


Changes in Markets Make Holding Cash More Important than Ever

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Low interest rates on bank products make it tempting to move money out. Here's why that might not be a good idea.

As interest rates on bank products have continued to fall, it has become increasingly tempting for investors to cut the cash portion of their portfolio. But an article from Morningstar provides a reason why such a move would be a mistake. The article, entitled A Market Lacking Diversification, explains how nine of eleven asset indexes analyzed by the author Abraham Bailin have become increasingly correlated from 2002 to today. The two outliers that didn't show increasing correlation were weighted heavily with Treasury bonds.

What does this mean?

For an investor, it means that diversifying a portfolio has gotten harder than ever. Diversifying means allocating money so that if one asset falls, the other goes up -  or at least doesn't fall. The idea is not to have all of your eggs in one basket. Correlation measures how closely different assets move in relation to one another. So, if the S&P 500 drops, a closely correlated index would also drop by a similar amount. To diversity a portfolio, you want correlations that are as low as possible or negative. Otherwise, when one market goes down, all of your other investments will also drop with it.

Note: A correlation number of 1 means that something perfectly mimicks the indicator it is being compared to. The closer to 1, the stronger the correlation.

Putting money into Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) or commodities used to be one way to diversity. Today, REITS have a .91 correlation to the S&P 500 while commodities have a .46 correlation, up from 0 ten years ago.

Why is Correlation Increasing?

Mr. Bailin hypothesizes that correlations have increased because of the growing importance of the risk on/risk off sentiment. Since the crash in 2008, investors view the market through a risk prism. When risk is perceived as low, they buy up assets that are considered more speculative. When risk is high, money flows out of these assets and into less speculative investments. Less speculative investments, like Treasuries happen to have a negative correlation to more risk based assets in the other indexes.

He also believes that correlation is increasing because more markets and indexes are being made in different asset classes. Ten years ago, trading in commodities was tiny. As more investors have piled in, the commodity index has come to reflect the sentiments of the general market.

The Growing Importance of Cash

Because cash is FDIC insured, it is the least risky of all asset classes. It also has a correlation of 0 to all other assets. Its value does not move in relation to any investment index. Therefore, if the rest of an investor's portfolio is getting increasingly correlated, it makes sense to hold cash, or to even increase the amount of money deposited into the bank. This is a phenomon we notice on BestCashCow. When there is a particularly bad day in the market, we see spikes in traffic as more investors look to protect their cash in insured banks and credit unions. As correlation has increased, it becomes even more important to place money in non-correlated holdings. An investor could put cash into Treasuries as another way to diversity their portfolio, but there is great risk in this. With interest rates so low, rates will eventually go up. When they go, Treasuries will lose value (Treasury prices move inversely to yield). It can be argued that at that point, Treasuries and the stock market will become more tightly correlated since rising rates will hurt Treasury prices as well as stock prices.

The Impact of Correlation on Your Interest Rate

Many investors already intuitively know this. Banks now hold record amounts of cash in the form of savings, CDs, and checking account. Even with the low rates, investors are parking a significant amount of money in cash. The irony is that the flight to safety has helped to bring down savings rates and CD rates. Many investors though, view banks as a safe place to park the safer portion of their portfolio until the world economy stabilizes. Any return is a bonus.


Weekly Rate Update - Aflac Federal Credit Union Offering 2.41% APY Savings Account

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Aflac Federal Credit Union is offering a 2.41% APY savings account for its members, and that's no quack.

Work for Aflac? If so, don't overlook one of the perks of the job. Aflac Federal Credit Union is offering a 2.41% APY savings account for its members, and that's no quack. The average national savings account rate for local banks is 0.21% while for online banks it is 0.80%. That gives you a sense of how competitive this rate is. The rate holds for deposits up to $100,000.01. The rate on deposits over this limit drops to 1.10% APY which is still highly competitive.

Like most credit unions, Aflac has a restricted field of membership. That means not everyone can join the credit union and open an account. To quality for membership, you must be an employee of Aflac, or the spouse of an empolyee. If you qualify, you can call them and request a membership packet. The packet also contains instructions for how to open a savings account.

Aflac is a medium sized credit union with $168 million in assets. It has a Texas Ratio of 15.14%, which is higher than the national average of 10.34% but not high enough to be a big concern. It is NCUA insured, and is located in Columbus, GA.

Our weekly update came out a few day late this week because of the holiday. I'll be back to the normal Monday schedule after the New Year. Happy New Year and here's to higher deposit rates in 2012 (although I think we may have to wait until 2013).

Look for the best savings account rates in your area by clicking the "Savings" tab above.

Previous Weekly Rate Deals

Check back next Monday for a new bank deal. Email any deals you know about to ratedeal (at) bestcashcow.com. Feel free to also share them below. If you're a bank and have a great deal not listed on BestCashCow, register for access and add the deal to the site.


$250 and More in Bonuses from ING Direct's Black Friday Sale

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ING Direct is back with their annual Black Friday sales event. As part of this event, ING offerering over $250 in bonuses to consumers who open certain accounts.

ING Direct is back with their annual Black Friday sales event. As part of this event, ING offerering over $250 in bonuses to consumers who open certain accounts. This year, the bonuses are as follows:

  1. $107 Electric Orange account opening bonus
    • Open Electric Orange November 25th - 27th and make a total of 5 purchases (either signature or PIN-based) using your Electric Orange Card or Person2Person Payments (or any combination of the two) within 45 days.
    • Your $107 bonus will be automatically deposited into your account on day 50.
    • Bonus only available for new Electric Orange checking. Only one bonus will be provided per household.
  2. $27 Kids Savings Account opening bonus
    • Open a Kids Savings Account November 25th - 27th and receive a $27 bonus into your new account. Only available when you open a new account with at least one new Customer (either you or the kiddo must be a new Customer to ING DIRECT).
    • $27 bonus starts earning interest upon account opening, and is available for withdrawal after 30 days.
    • There's no minimum deposit amount required. 0.90% Variable Annual Percentage Yield effective as of 10/21/2011.
  3. $32 MONEY account opening bonus
    • Open MONEY November 25th - 27th and make 1 Card transaction (either signature, PIN-based or with PayPassTM) using your MONEY Card within 30 days and you'll receive a $32 bonus into your new account. (Keep in mind, the teen gets the Card.)
    • Your $32 bonus will be automatically deposited into your account on day 35.
    • There's no minimum deposit amount required. 0.25% Variable Annual Percentage Yield effective as of 7/13/2011.
  4. $100 401K Roll Over
    • Roll over your 401K with a Sharebuilder IRA and get $100.
    • Roll over or transfer in a qualified retirement account of at least $5,000 before 12/31/11 and you’ll receive a $100 bonus by January 16, 2012. Transfers from ING DIRECT, fsb and affiliates do not qualify. The bonus will count towards your 2012 contribution limit and will be reported on your Form 5498.

These bonuses last 3 days from Friday , Nov 25, 12:01am ET - Sunday, Nov 27, 11:59pm ET.

More on these and othe bonuses from ING Direct.


Best Florida Savings Account Rates

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Local banks in Florida offering the best savings account rates according to the BestCashCow database.

Rate information contained on this page may have changed. 

Financial term discussed in this article: Texas Ratio (understand what it means)

Local banks in Florida are offering some attractive savings account rates according to the BestCashCow database. The average U.S. local savings account rate has dipped to 0.22% APY while the average online bankrate is now 0.81% APY. We found some local Florida banks offering rates better or close to the best online savings rates. If you happen to live close to these banks, they are worth a look.

  • Biscayne Bank leads the pack with a 1.00% APY savings rate with a paltry $1 minimum balance. It wasn't so long ago that 1.00% was a pretty low rate but nowadays it's close to the top. The bank has two branches located in Miami, was founded in 2005, and has $232 million in assets. Assets have grown from $81 million in 2006. The bank has a Texas Ratio of 16.64% versus the national average of 21.06%.
  • First Florida Bank is offering a 0.85% APY savings account with a $300 minimum balance. The bank has two locations in Destin, FL, which is in the upper panhandle between Talahasee and Mobile. The bank's assets have grown from $27.5 million in 2006 to $175 million in 2011. Its Texas Ratio is 21.66% versus he national average of 21.06%. First Florida was founded in 2006.
  • Gulfsouth Private Bank is offering 0.80% APY on its savings accounts with a $1,000 minimum balance. Gulfsouth was founded in 2005 and has five branches located in the upper panhandle once again between Talahasee and Mobile. This areas seems to be the golden location for high savings rates in Florida. The bank has a Texas Ratio of 110%, which is much higher than the national average of 21.06% and should be a warning sign. High Texas Ratios can be a sign of bank stress. Assets have grown from $72 million in 2006 to $209 million in 2009 and have come down to $187 million in 2011.
  • Destin, Florida strikes again! Community Bank, Destin is offering a 0.75% APY savings accoun rate with a $100 minimum balance. The bank has one branch in Miramar Beach, FL which like First Florida Bank is in the upper panhandle between Talahasee and Mobile. The bank was founded in 2007 and has seen its assets grow from $35 million to $82 million in 2011. The bank has a Texas Ratio of 7.39%.

Don't Live Near These Banks?

 

Another option is to consider opening a savings account online. Online savings account offer attractive rates, low minimum balances, and the convenience of banking from home. Some featured accounts are:

  • Discover Bank is offering 1.00% APY with a $1 minimum balance.
  • CNB Bank Direct is offering a 1.00% APY with a $1 minimum balance.
  • Clear Sky Accounts offering a 1.04% APY rate with a $1 minimum balance.

Getting the best rate makes a difference. To understand how earning half a percentage point can put a lot more money in your wallet over time, please visit our financial knowledge section. It pays to get the best rate.


Best Savings Account Rates - Don't Settle for Average

Rate information contained on this page may have changed. Please find latest savings rates.

Average savings account rates continue to fall, with average online savings accounts yielding 0.85% APY and average local savings account rates at 0.23% APY. But there's no reason to settle for average savings rates.

Average savings account rates continue to fall, with average online savings accounts yielding 0.85% APY and average local savings account rates at 0.23% APY. But there's no reason to settle for average savings rates. We looked through our database of over 6,000 banks and 6,000 credit unions to find the best rates across the country.

Best Savings Account Rates

Credit Unions in Georgia took the top three spots on the best of the best rate tables this week.

  1. AFLAC Federal Credit Union of Columbus, GA takes the top spot for its 2.410% APY for deposits up to $100,000. The credit union serves employees and employee families of Aflac Incorporated. The credit union has $167 million in assets. Its Texas Ratio is 15.88%, higher than the national credit union average of 10.30%. The credit union is NCUA insured.
  2. Floyd County Postal Employee Credit Union of Roma, GA is offering a 2.30% APY savings account with a $1 minimum deposit. The credit union serves postal employees of Floyd County and their families. The credit union is very small with $4.9 million in assets. Its Texas Ratio is 10.83% in line with the national average. The credit union is NCUA insured.
  3. Genuine Parts Credit Union of Norcross, GA is offering a 2.02% APY savings account with a minimum deposit of $50. This is another small credit union with only $8 million in assets. The bank has a low Texas Ratio of 1.08%.

There are thousands of credit unions across the country offering excellent rates with low fees across the country. Find savings account rates from credit unions in your local area by clicking on the "Savings" tab above.

But if you don't want to join a credit union, there are many local banks offering rates well above the national average.

  1. Reynolds State Bank in Reynolds, IL is offering a passbook savings account that pays 1.51% APY with a $100 minimum balance. The bank has $90 million in assets and was established in 1888. The bank's financials look excellent, with an extremely low Texas Ratio of 2.51%. The bank is FDIC insured.
  2. People's Bank of Seneca in Seneca, MO is offering a 1.50% APY savings account rate. The bank has $90 million in assets and a low Texas Ratio of 7.75%. The bank was founded in 1996 and is FDIC insured.
  3. The Victory Bank of Limerick, PA has a Fortress Savings Account that pays 1.35% APY with a $2,500 minimum balance. The bank has $100 million in assets and a low Texas Ratio of 4.19%. One factor beyind the low Texas Ratio may be the fact that the bank was founded in 2008 and most of its loans were give after the financial crisis.

Lastly, if you prefer to bank online, there are some very attractive online savings rates that are well above the national averages.

  • CNB Bank Direct is offering the top online savings account rate at 1.05% APY. CNB Bank Direct is a division of The Citizens National Bank of Bluffton. The Citizens National Bank of Bluffton is an FDIC insured institution founded in 1920. It has approximately $0.56 billion in assets and a Texas Ratio of 19.9%.
  • Personal Savings from American Express, the banking division of American Express is offering a 1.00% APY savings account. Personal Savings by American Express is a division of American Express Bank, FSB.. American Express Bank, FSB. is an FDIC insured institution founded in 2000. It has approximately $38.98 billion in assets and a Texas Ratio of 5.93%

Find the best savings account rates from local banks in your area or view all online savings account rates by clicking on the "Savings" tab above.

All of the banks and most of the credit unions on BestCashCow have deposited insured by either the FDIC or the NCUA. That means you can get a higher rate with no additional risk to your money. That's easy money. At a time when bank rates are at record lows, you might as well earn the most that you can.