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Online Savings & Money Market Account Rates 2021

Online Savings & Money Market Account Rates

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Bitcoin Cannot Get to Zero Fast Enough

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

The stock market is coming off of its most recent highs quite dramatically, and CNBC is full of pundits trying to explain its fall and guess about its future.

People who loose money in the market today will no doubt have opportunities to recover their losses over time, depending on their time horizon.  The stock market may have moved to an extreme valuation, but it isn’t a fraud or a bubble.

What is clearly a bubble, however, is all of the coins and cryptocurrencies that have popped up.   I have been startled to see them advertised on Facebook (Facebook has since taken these ads down) and to see some of my LinkedIn contacts pushing all sorts of obscure worthless digital tokens.

It is also quite startling that the mainstream media has been celebrating bitcoin rather than pointing out where the fraud occurs.

The New York Times had a great article about fraud in the crypt space yesterday, painting a clear picture of the exchanges and the coins as an out-and-out con. 

But, let’s not forget that the rest of the mainstream financial media has been celebrating bitcoin. 

Bloomberg interviewed a child in his pajamas.

The CNBC Fast Money crowd recently allowed their platform to become an open discussion of bitcoin to etherium.

What is clear from the NY Times’ article is that bitcoin and all of these crypt currencies are going to be publicly exposed as frauds by the SEC and the Commodities Futures Trading Commission.  Many their hucksters may even wind up in jail.

There are going to be a lot of people who are going to be hurt and hurt badly in this in this arena.    With the mainstream media allowing a fraud to be perpetuated, the only protection for most investors is for bitcoin to go to zero before they are tempted by any of this. 


What is the Difference Between A Savings Account And A Money Market Account?

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Savings accounts and money market accounts are extremely similar account types.  In fact, they are so similar that BestCashCow lists them together.  Both are basic ways to stash cash while keeping it accessible (they are liquid accounts).   But that isn’t where the similarity ends - both savings and money markets are insured up to $250,000 by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (or FDIC) at banks, or the National Credit Union Administration (or NCUA) at credit unions.

Most importantly, both savings and money market accounts pay interest – sometimes a high yield – and are therefore appropriate places to hold enough cash for a rainy day in any environment, and can be attractive places to hold cash versus stocks or bonds depending on your outlook for the economy.

Accountholders of both savings and money markets can avoid any sort of monthly fees for a very low minimum deposit (as low as zero).   See a list of the best online rates with the minimum amount necessary to avoid fees here.

Federal regulations may limit savings and money market accounts to six transfers per month (including internet, telephone, etc.), and no more than three of those can be by check, draft or debit card.  The account holder can make unlimited withdrawals by teller, ATM or by mail (or by ACH instituted from an external institution).

Where a money market account is different from a savings account is that it adds some of  the benefits of a checking account, enabling certain check writing services.   However, some banks automatically link high-yield savings accounts to matching checking accounts in order to provide the same service.   Regardless of whether you are opening a money market account, you may need a separate checking account to perform essential checking and bill payment services (see the best free checking account options here).

In short, we at BestCashCow do not believe that depositors need to be concerned at all about whether they are opening a savings account or a money market account. We think that depositors should look for the best rates and best service.  That can come from online banks or it can come from brick and mortar banks near you.

See the best online rates or see the best local rates near you.


A Leading Online Bank is Trying to Sell You Gold; Should You Bite?

Dollar Savings Direct, a division of Emigrant Bank, now offers depositors a competitive savings rate.   After a many year hiatus from the online savings market, Emigrant returns to a competitive position for a company that a decade ago was a pioneer in the online savings space.   It remains to be seen whether Emigrant intends to compete for the long-term in the savings and CD arena.  At various brief intervals, Emigrant – through Emigrant Direct, Dollar Savings Direct and My Savings Direct – has experimented with attracting depositors with a high rate only to drop the rate, sometimes quite precipitously, after a couple of months.

Since the market meltdown in 2009, Emigrant has also from time-to-time marketed distressed real estate to deposit customers that the bank had repossessed through a “real estate opportunities” link on some of their online banking websites.

Now Dollar Savings Direct (Emigrant) is selling gold. 

My personal opinion (no recommendations attached) is that this is a very interesting time to be buying gold.  I have never been a gold bug, but it seems to me that the only long term solution for the US to handle its debt is going to be to deflate the value of that debt over time.  Therefore, inflation and long-term US dollar rates will need to rise.  Likewise, the Trump Administration is prepared to engage in a trade war and to talk down the value of the USD, as Steven Mnuchin did in Davos this morning.  I am hesitant to invest in the British pound or the Euro in front of Brexit and the likelihood that the ECB will also race to devalue its currency.  I think that anyone investing for more than a couple of hours in emerging market currencies or bitcoin should have his or her head examined.  This leaves the shinny yellow metal as an interesting store of value versus the US dollar.

But, the Emigrant proposal just is not yet attractive.  While they will deliver the gold that you buy directly to you, most purchasers will opt instead to have them hold and store it for you.   Their storage fees, which are layered on top of their transaction fees, are 80 basis points a year.  80 basis points, especially compounded over any length of time, can really take a bite into any appreciation that you are looking to get in the asset (and the asset doesn’t produce any dividends or interest to offset it).

The SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) and the IShares Gold Trust (IAU) represent much more attractive alternatives with better liquidity (tradable any time that the market is open), potential tax advantages of an ETF, and much lower carrying charges.  These things aren’t small funds - one is over $36 billion and the other is almost $11 billion - and they are fully vetted by regulators of all sorts and by the media (Bob Pisani of CNBC, among others, went several years ago to see the vaults in London). 

I am not a fan of the 40 basis points that GLD charges and the 25 basis points that IAD charges (I think that Blackrock and State Street could charge much less), but these are still less than half of what Dollar Savings Direct or Emigrant are going to charge you to hold the bars for you.

It seems to me that Emigrant is trying to rescue a business model that may have been attractive in an earlier era, but that is largely obviated by ETFs (that of being a custodian for precious metals) on the backs of unsuspecting depositors attracted to their savings rates.