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Ally Bank Online Savings Account Review

Ally Direct

Ally Bank

0.84%APY$0Min. to open$84Earnings per $10,000
Editor’s Take: A Money Magazine “Best Savings Bank” (2012)

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There’s a new national bank competing in the high yield savings account market. Ally Bank offers several online savings options that market-leading interest rates, including an online savings account that requires no minimum opening deposit or minimum balance, as well as a variety of certificate of deposits.

Who is Ally Bank?

Ally Bank is a subsidiary of the General Motors Acceptance Corporation, which began as the financial arm of General Motors and provided financing to auto dealers and consumers. (In 2006, GM sold a majority share of GMAC, so the two companies are now independent of each other). Last year, GMAC became a bank holding company in order to gain access to federal TARP funds. This year, GMAC Bank changed its name to Ally Bank.

As we all know, GM is having its fair share of trouble these days. Even though GMAC Bank and GM are now different entities, the bank decided to change its name to Ally Bank to, well, distance itself from its now distressed cousin. With a new name and FDIC insurance on all deposit accounts to $250,000, Ally Bank is now making waves in the online savings world by offering some no-fee, high-rate savings accounts.

Ally Bank Online Savings Account

The Ally Bank high yield savings account currently offers 0.84% APY (10/21/2013) and has no minimum opening deposit and no minimum balance and no annual fee. Ally Bank’s online savings account has no hidden fees. Finally, Ally Bank clearly advertises that there is a six withdrawal limit per statement cycle (approximately each month). This may seem like a downside to the account, except for the fact that federal law requires this limit on all savings account. (Chances are your existing savings account just put this fact in fine print).

Ally Bank No Penalty Certificate of Deposit (CD)

The high rate on Ally Bank’s online savings account is one thing, but Ally Bank also offers a no penalty certificate of deposit. Typically, banks charge a penalty for withdrawing funds from a CD early. (This is typically three months’ interest on CDs of up to 12 months and six months’ interest on CDs longer than 12 months). Ally Bank’s no penalty CD, by contrast, lets you withdraw funds from your CD anytime without a penalty. (Granted, you can earn a higher rate if you choose a regular CD over the no-penalty option).

Have you had a chance to save with Ally Bank? How was your experience?

Published or updated on June 3, 2009

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About David Weliver

David Weliver is the founding editor of Money Under 30. He's a cited authority on personal finance and the unique money issues we face during our first two decades as adults. He lives in Maine with his wife and two children.


We invite readers to respond with questions or comments. Comments may be held for moderation and will be published according to our comment policy. Comments are the opinions of their authors; they do not represent the views or opinions of Money Under 30.

  1. MBinWV says:

    I’ve been an Ally customer for approximately 4 months.

    During that period, my place of employment has attempted to direct deposit my paychecks into Ally, but the deposits were rejected. I then tried to e-check deposit my paychecks….which Ally held for 12 days EACH time before depositing. In the mean time, I had checked and double checked and triple checked that the account information that was being used was correct. Each time I called Ally I was subjected to yammerings about account numbers that I’ve confirmed and hold times I find excessive, given the fact that it’s a salary check for the same amount every two weeks. But, I figured it would all be fine when the direct deposit issue was fixed.

    After five attempts, my accounting department said “Good news, your deposit has been accepted!” and I was so happy. But on deposit day, my money wasn’t in my account. My pay stub said “This is not a check” and Ally said “We don’t know where your money is…but it may take us 24 to 48 (business) hours to research it” On a Friday that means I won’t hear from Ally until Tuesday, and if they DO find it, I’m sure they’ll come up with a reason to hold it for another 12 days.

    The worst part…while speaking with a customer service supervisor (almost as useless as a customer service representative, but with a more authoritative sounding title) she indicated that there was no way to further expedite my resolution, as it was a newly opened issue. WTF? I’ve been calling over and over for months about the same issue. Maybe it’s a bit different than the last eight calls, but it still boils down to the same. little. nugget. My direct deposit isn’t being deposited and Ally won’t give me my money.

    The fee-less accounts, the interest, the convenience, the friendly customer service, the e-check deposit…it all sounds fantastic, but BEWARE. You’ll continuously call with the same issues. You’ll wait weeks for access to your own money and there is no direct line to the resolution center…leaving you at the mercy of friendly, but relatively helpless customer service reps (and supervisors).

    I’ll be posting this review on every available site for each waking hour that my funds remain missing in some Ally limbo. At the earliest availability I’ll be removing my money and marching it straight toward the teller of a better bank…if there is such a thing.

    Wish me luck.

  2. Joe S says:

    I have had an account with the them for over a year and never had any problems. In fact, I opened several No Penalty CD accounts when that product was introduced since I love the combination of having a high rate with the ability to pull the money out without ANY penalty.

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