Ally Online Banking is a bank holding company organized in Delaware and headquartered in Detroit, Michigan, founded in 1919 by General Motors (GM). The company provides financial services including car finance, online banking via a direct bank, corporate lending, vehicle insurance, mortgage loans, and an electronic trading platform to trade financial assets.
Ally is ranked 19th on the list of largest banks in the United States by assets, is the largest car finance company in the U.S. by volume, and serves over 6 million customers. Via its SmartAuction online marketplace for auto auctions, launched in 2000, the company has sold more than 5 million vehicles, including 270,000 vehicles sold in 2019.
Ally Online Banking Unique Features
Ally Bank should appeal to most consumers looking for a solid online bank account. It may be a particularly good fit for customers who want to:
- Earn a competitive return on savings
- Open a savings account with no minimum balance requirement
- Open a checking account that comes with a debit card and no monthly maintenance fees
- Earn more on their cash with CDs that require no minimum deposit
- Bank with an established, well-known online bank
Ally Online Banking Financial Services
Ally Bank offers a wide range of financial services. One can open a variety of bank accounts for everyday use and longer-term savings.
- Online savings account
- Money market account
- Interest checking account
- Certificates of deposit.
Online Savings Account
Ally’s savings account offers a rate of 1.50%, higher than the national average of 0.08%, and interest is compounded daily, which means you’ll make a bit more money on interest compared to accounts that compound monthly. There’s a limit of six free outbound transfers per month, which is standard; the bank charges $10 for every transfer after six.
Money market account
This account is a hybrid of checking and savings accounts: You earn interest, but you can spend your money instantly.
- As of Feb. 13, 2020, earn 0.75% APY, regardless of balance.
- Get a debit card and free checks for spending your money.
- Pay no monthly maintenance fees.
- Enjoy the same ATM access as the Ally Checking Account.
Certain withdrawals from the Money Market Account are limited to six per month, due to federal regulations. You can withdraw cash as often as you want at an ATM, but payments and transfers out of your account count toward the limit.
Interest Checking Account
Ally offers an interest-bearing checking account with solid rates, low fees and free access to over 43,000 ATMs nationwide. Ally will also reimburse you up to $10 per statement cycle for any fees you’re charged using an out-of-network ATM in the U.S.
Note: Ally doesn’t accept cash deposits. Your options include mobile check deposit, setting up direct deposit, setting up a wire transfer or sending a check by mail.
Ally Online Banking Interest Checking
Ally’s Interest Checking Account is free and pays a modest return on your cash.
- Earn 0.10% on balances of less than $15,000.
- Earn 0.50% on balances of $15,000 or more.
- Pay no monthly maintenance fees.
- Send instant and secure payments to friends and family with Zelle.
- Deposit checks to your account with the mobile app.
- This is an excellent option for everyday spending. You earn interest on your account balance, you can easily
- pay bills online, and you get a debit card for cash withdrawals and everyday spending.
Ally’s ATM setup is decent, too. You can withdraw cash at any Allpoint ATM for free. (Allpoint ATMs are located at convenience stores, restaurants, and financial institutions.) And you can receive up to $10 per statement cycle in ATM fee rebate charges from other U.S. ATMs. Ally Bank does not charge you an ATM fee for using non-network ATMs, but the ATM operator may impose a fee. And Ally does charge you a 1% foreign transaction fee when you get cash outside of the U.S.
Ally has a variety of CDs, including what it calls High-Yield CDs. They are traditional CDs that require you to commit to leaving funds with the bank for a specific length of time. As a result, they may pay higher rates at issue than some of the more flexible options we discuss below. The rate stays the same, for better or worse, until maturity, and there is no minimum deposit required to get started. That’s somewhat unusual for CDs—many of which have a minimum of at least $500—and makes these CDs a great option for anyone who just has a small amount to invest.
Other Financial Products From Ally Online Banking
Liquid CDs are not widespread, but they’re more common than CDs that allow you to raise your rate. Ally Bank is competitive with other offerings, but it’s always good to shop around. The best choice might depend on how much you have to invest and what other products you want from a bank, if any.
Ally Bank offers a robust range of offerings besides bank accounts:
- Auto loans
- Home purchase loans
- Mortgage refinance loans
- Self-directed investment accounts
- Managed investment portfolios
Ally Bank’s Customer Service
Ally Bank earns high marks for customer service, taking second place in the 2019 J.D. Power 2019 Direct Banking Satisfaction Study. Customers particularly like Ally’s account opening experience, as well as the products and fee structure.
What’s more, Ally Bank offers phone support 24/7, and you can see your estimated wait time before calling (so you can decide if it’s the right time to call or not). If you prefer typing, you can chat with customer service representatives 24/7. Customers logged in online or using the Ally Bank app can send secure messages and chat about account-specific issues.
Ally Bank is a solid option for anybody that wants free online banking. Interest rates aren’t always the highest. But the Bank is competitive, so you can earn a decent return without putting effort into chasing rates and switching accounts frequently. With 24/7 customer service and a well-designed site that explains almost everything.
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