Does Radius Bank Offer the New Best Online Checking Account?
Jun 25

Does Radius Bank Offer the New Best Online Checking Account?

For a while now, I’ve been a major proponent of Ally Bank’s online checking account because it offered the best all-round package of low fees and desirable perks such as access to any ATM for free. However, Radius Bank (formerly known as First Trade Union Bank) launched a new online checking account, called Radius Hybrid,

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Credit Card Hack: How to Sell Your Barclaycard Travel Miles
Jun 20

Credit Card Hack: How to Sell Your Barclaycard Travel Miles

As I was browsing the FatWallet forums, I came across an interesting post from someone who wanted a way to cash out his miles earned on the Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite MasterCard without actually booking travel. The reason being, he no longer plans to travel due to a baby. If you racked up a

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New Startup to Become the Uber of Banks? Abra Turns Everyday People Into ATMs
Jun 17

New Startup to Become the Uber of Banks? Abra Turns Everyday People Into ATMs

A new financial startup, called Abra, was mentioned by CNN Money recently and it posed an interesting way of “moving” cash without ever having to deal with a bank. Instead, the company aims to make everyday people and businesses into its own ATM network. Some may consider Abra as the Uber of money transfers. It’s

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Do You Really Have to Show ID When Using Your Credit Card?
Jun 12

Do You Really Have to Show ID When Using Your Credit Card?

In a recent MyBankTracker story about the antiquated process of signing your name after making a purchase with your credit card, a reader left a comment that pointed out the rules for showing your ID when using a credit card to buy something. I like to think that I’m an informed consumer, and like many,

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How to Crack the Secret Code of Your Credit Card Numbers
Jun 08

How to Crack the Secret Code of Your Credit Card Numbers

You probably use your credit cards on a daily basis, but chances are, you don’t give much thought to the numbers printed on it, or even what’s on the front of your card. If you’re among the millions of Americans (who owe a total of $809 billion in credit card debt), you’re more interested in

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What to Do With an Expensive Credit Card You No Longer Use If You Don’t Want to Close It
Jun 05

What to Do With an Expensive Credit Card You No Longer Use If You Don’t Want to Close It

In a recent conversation with MyBankTracker’s chief editor, Claire Tak, she realized that she had one credit card that she had stopped using, but still pays for — the Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select MasterCard, which has a $95 annual fee. If you were ever put in the same position, you might also take some

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Android Pay Is Finally Here: Will It Make Up for Google Wallet’s Failure?
Jun 03

Android Pay Is Finally Here: Will It Make Up for Google Wallet’s Failure?

Android users who’ve been envious of Apple Pay users will soon have their own mobile payment method. Google recently announced Android Pay, which will allow you to use your Android device to pay for a purchase — no need to take out your wallet. See how it’ll work and how it could change the way

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Did You Know CD Rates Are Rising Fast? How to Save Big
May 30

Did You Know CD Rates Are Rising Fast? How to Save Big

Capital One 360 recently doubled most of their rates on certificates of deposit (CDs). Are you taking advantage of such massive CD rate increases? See why rates are improving and how you can maximize that your cash savings. Two weeks ago, Capital One 360 made some drastic CD rate increases. The most notable one is the change

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3 Quick But Aggressive Shortcuts for a Higher Credit Score
May 28

3 Quick But Aggressive Shortcuts for a Higher Credit Score

These days, everyone wants things immediately — including stellar credit scores. A solid credit profile is created after years of consistently good credit management. But, many people don’t care (or even know) that it takes time — they want it now. A friend of mine is one of these impatient people and consulted me for

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Here’s Why You’re Still Not Making an Emergency Fund a Priority
May 27

Here’s Why You’re Still Not Making an Emergency Fund a Priority

Story highlights: – Find out what it may cost you if you don’t have an emergency fund ready – Learn how to prioritize your savings when you don’t have much income – How to automate your savings so you don’t worry about it each month Picture yourself relaxing on vacation at your favorite travel destination.

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To Test: How to Make Your Savings Work For You (contains retirement copy)
May 26

To Test: How to Make Your Savings Work For You (contains retirement copy)

According to the official Social Security website, a man who is 65 today should expect to live until 84, and a woman who is 65 should expect to live until 86. With those statistics in mind, if you plan on retiring at 65, you’ll want to save up enough money to live for at least

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Chase to Raise Monthly Fees In Certain States: Tips to Avoid These Fees
May 23

Chase to Raise Monthly Fees In Certain States: Tips to Avoid These Fees

Higher monthly fees are incoming for many Chase customers with basic checking and savings accounts. It’s another round of fee hikes that are sure to anger customers who struggle to avoid those fees. Fortunately, the fee waiver requirements are not changing. I’ve got a couple of neat tips to help you waive these monthly fees

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Lesson From Starbucks: Creative Ways That Hackers Can Steal From You
May 20

Lesson From Starbucks: Creative Ways That Hackers Can Steal From You

The recent news of the Starbucks hack is one of the warning signs against increasingly-convenient payment methods. Cybercriminals were able to steal money from Starbucks customers though the Starbucks mobile app without actually obtaining much financial information. The incident shows that hackers are looking to steal from us, indirectly. How else can they do it?

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Online Checking Accounts at Ally Bank and Capital One 360 Have a New Rival: MyCBB
May 19

Online Checking Accounts at Ally Bank and Capital One 360 Have a New Rival: MyCBB

When I heard of the new MyCBB (an online division of California Business Bank) checking account that was launched in April, it really did sound too good to be true. It’s a free checking account that has a very attractive interest rate — with no strings attached. I just had to compare it to the

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How to Open an IRA Retirement Account In 10 Minutes
May 14

How to Open an IRA Retirement Account In 10 Minutes

This past weekend, a friend finally mustered up the willpower to open an IRA, but she asked me to help guide her through the process. I realize that she’s not alone — many people find it to be a daunting task. That’s why I decided to write this article: to show how quickly you can set one

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How to Prioritize Your Emergency Fund With Other Financial Goals
May 09

How to Prioritize Your Emergency Fund With Other Financial Goals

As a frequent visitor of many personal finance forums throughout the web (including Reddit), I’ve noticed one glaring question that definitely gets asked more than anything else: “Now that I can put money into savings, how do I juggle an emergency fund along with my other financial goals?” See my recommended approach to prioritizing your

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Insider Secrets from a Chase Banker: How to Complain the Right Way
Apr 23

Insider Secrets from a Chase Banker: How to Complain the Right Way

“The customer is always right” is not a concept that translates well to the banking industry. However, despite their reputation for fee-gouging customers, banks will occasionally play nice and give in to customer complaints and demands. However, you need to also know the rules of the game, and luckily for me, I was able to

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Has Capital One 360 Lived Up to ING Direct?
Apr 16

Has Capital One 360 Lived Up to ING Direct?

Nearly four years ago, a popular online bank called ING Direct was acquired by Capital One and rebranded as Capital One 360 about one year later. Many worried customers commented on my previous story where I implored them to not leave the bank in response to the news — they felt bad changes were on the

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MasterCard vs. Visa: Which Has Better Concierge Service?
Apr 08

MasterCard vs. Visa: Which Has Better Concierge Service?

Today, there are many credit cards that offer free personal concierge service, which helps cardholders perform various tasks and acts almost as a personal assistant. We decided to pick the two largest card brands — MasterCard and Visa — and compared their concierge services. In this experiment, Claire Tak (MyBankTracker’s chief editor) and I signed

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Don’t Pay for FICO Credit Scores Anymore: They Come Free With These Credit Cards
Apr 07

Don’t Pay for FICO Credit Scores Anymore: They Come Free With These Credit Cards

(UPDATE: In late March, Chase launched a redesign of the Chase Slate card, one of my favorite balance transfer credit cards, along with free FICO credit scores.) In years past, there were tricky TV commercials for “free credit scores” that were actually introductory offers for pricey subscription plans. Now, it seems like those commercials are disappearing

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Here’s How I Increased My Overall Credit Card Limits By 22 Percent
Apr 03

Here’s How I Increased My Overall Credit Card Limits By 22 Percent

Increasing your credit card limit is one of the easiest ways that you can boost your credit score, especially when you haven’t displayed any poor credit behavior (e.g., late payments). Over the long run, regular credit limit increases (CLIs) will help improve your ability to qualify for major loans (i.e., a mortgage). It’s part of

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How to Cash In on Chase Checking Account Bonuses
Mar 30

How to Cash In on Chase Checking Account Bonuses

Checking account bonuses are nothing out of the ordinary from Chase. But recently, the bank started promoting a very enticing bonus offer: a $300 cash bonus when you open a Chase Total Checking account. (Normally, the bonus is around $150.) Thinking about signing up? I show you what you need to know first, and how

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Hate Chase’s No-Cash Deposit Policy? Chase QuickPay Can Help
Mar 26

Hate Chase’s No-Cash Deposit Policy? Chase QuickPay Can Help

Sending money between Chase accounts and Bank of America and Wells Fargo accounts is now very easy, thanks to clearXchange. This could help circumvent Chase’s prohibitive cash deposit policy that many MyBankTracker readers have complained about. In a nutshell, Chase doesn’t let you deposit cash into an account that isn’t yours. (So, you wouldn’t be

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Cashier’s Check, Money Order and Personal Check: Which One Clears the Fastest?
Mar 20

Cashier’s Check, Money Order and Personal Check: Which One Clears the Fastest?

Digital payments are all the rave today, but physical payable instruments (i.e., checks and money orders) are still trusted payment methods for many Americans. However, there’s some confusion over how long it takes the funds to clear for the recipient (aka the payee). I tested deposit speeds of each one to find out the fastest

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Sending Money Is Getting Easier for U.S. Bank Customers
Mar 19

Sending Money Is Getting Easier for U.S. Bank Customers

More big banks are collaborating to make it easier for Americans to send money to each other. A payment system, clearXchange, formed by the nation’s largest banks has added U.S. Bank as part of the network. Find out what this means for customers like you. This week, U.S. Bank joined clearXchange, the bank-centric digital payments

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