American Express VS SmartyPig

Which bank is better for you?

  • Financial Rates: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Customer Service: 4.0 Star Icon
  • Website Experience: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Bank Fees: 5.0 Star Icon
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Pros:

  • Options on how to receive interest
  • No opening required amount
  • Pay credit card bill from savings account
  • Competitive interest rates on accounts

Cons:

  • Only offer savings and CD accounts
  • Must link account to a different bank
  • Funds not transferred immediately
  • No checks, debit cards, or ATM cards
  • Financial Rates: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Customer Service: 3.0 Star Icon
  • Website Experience: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Bank Fees: 5.0 Star Icon
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Pros:

  • Free savings account
  • Tiered Interest Rates
  • Set up multiple goals
  • Direct withdrawals

Cons:

  • Only offer one type of account
  • Six withdrawals allowed per month
  • Maximum account balance
  • One external funding source allowed
American Express Review

American Express Bank offers ways to receive the money you earn off interest. You can deposit it back into the account earning the interest. The interest can be transferred to your CD account. You can deposit the money into your linked external account, or receive a check. You can request a check to come monthly, quarterly, or annually.

There is no minimum amount required to open an account. You start earning interest with any amount deposited into the high-yield savings account. The more money you deposit, the more interest you earn, but no required amount.

Once you open a savings account with American Express, you can link that account to your credit card. Log into your account and link the savings account to the credit card. Paying your credit card bill from your savings account does count as a withdrawal.

American Express Bank offers higher interest rates than your typical bank. Their rates are competitive with other online banks. You can find the current rates are on their website.

American Express Bank only offers a high-yield savings account and CDs. To deposit money into the accounts, you must link it to your current banking accounts. You can also sign up for direct deposit from your employer or to make automatic deposits.

You must link your American Express accounts to your current bank account. You can then transfer money between the different accounts. Federal regulations only allow six transactions each billing cycle for savings accounts.

Transferring money to and from your American Express personal account is not immediate. Money coming into your American Express account is not available until the fifth business day. All other transfers take 1-3 business days.

American Express Bank does not offer checks, debit cards, or ATM cards for their accounts. To get your money, you must transfer it from your American Express savings account back into your linked external account. If you open a CD, you must wait until the maturity date to access your money without a penalty.

Read the full American Express review.

SmartyPig Review

SmartyPig accounts do not have monthly maintenance fees. There is not a required amount to keep in the account. The first initial deposit to open the account is $25.

This savings account offers tiered interest rates. This means the more money you have in the account, the more interest you will earn. The interest rates do not vary much between tiers. The difference from a low amount to the higher amount is around 0.05%.

With this SmartyPig account, you can set up different savings goals. The savings accounts can be long-term, like saving for a college education. They can also be short term, like saving for a mountain bike or birthday party. You can transfer money from your SmartyPig primary account to different savings goals.

The best way to save money is to set up direct withdrawals. You set up when you want the money to come out of your account and how much to withdraw. Then, SmartyPig does the rest. Once the money is deposited into your account, you can transfer it into different savings goal. The withdrawals can be set up to occur monthly or biweekly.

SmartyPig has only one account offered: a high yield savings account. They do not offer checking accounts, CDs, money market accounts, or business accounts. The interest rate on this savings account is considerably higher than other banks savings accounts.

The website says you can withdraw money anytime, but federal regulation only allows six withdrawals per billing cycle. This includes transfers between your SmartyPig primary account and your different savings goals. The transfer or withdrawal will not take place if you have made more than six in a billing cycle. If you repeatedly try to make more than six, your account will be closed. Once you reach your goal, you cannot withdraw part of your money back to your external funding source. You must withdraw it all, or transfer the money between other savings goals.

This account is not meant for high account balances. There is a maximum account balance of $250,000. If your account has $250,000, you will earn interest on the money in the account, but you cannot add to the account.

Each SmartyPig account is only allowed to have one external funding source set up for it. That means you can only have one bank account connected to each SmartyPig account. You can change your external funding source if you want, but never have more than one.

Read the full SmartyPig review.

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