Capital One 360, the online bank formerly known as ING Direct, is offering special deals for new customers. I’m a long-time customer, and I opened my account when ING Direct was offering one of the best interest rates available among online savings accounts. The interest rate, like all interest rates, has shrunk over the course of the last several years, but that’s my only complaint.
The account, despite being branded as Capital One, a company formerly known for their sub-prime credit cards and poor customer service, has not suffered in any other way. I was skeptical, as were many customers, when ING Direct announced its savings and checking accounts would be acquired by Capital One, but I gave the new proprietors a chance. I haven’t noticed any difference so far other than a change in color scheme and logo.
If you’re looking for a new online savings or checking account, I would still recommend Capital One 360. Read my full review here. The account doesn’t offer the highest interest rate available today, but if you intend on keeping a medium size balance in the account, you might only be missing out on a few dollars or less a year.
For example, a 5 basis-point difference (0.05 percentage points) between Capital One 360 Savings account and the Discover Bank Savings Account is only $5 on a balance of $10,000. Told another way, the minimum deposit to receive the bonus of $76 mentioned below is $500. That’s a difference in interest of $0.25 — two bits — but you get $76, which is about 300 years of that interest difference.
This bonus more than makes up for any interest shortfall.
This Independence Day sale ends before Independence Day. Today is the last day to receive these benefits for signing up for a Capital One 360 or Sharebuilder account, so if you are interested, you’ll need to act quickly. The new accounts need to be open by 11:59 PM Eastern Time on July 3.
360 Savings. From July 1 through July 3, new savings customers can earn a $76 bonus. The $76 is added to your account immediately, and begins earning interest like your initial deposit on the first day, but you won’t be able to withdraw your bonus for 30 days. I think that’s fair. The minimum deposit required to receive the bonus is $500, but Capital One 360 does not enforce any ongoing minimum balance requirement.
360 Checking. At the same time Capital One is offering a $76 bonus for signing up for a new savings account, the bank is offering a larger bonus, $100, for customers opening a 360 Checking account for the first time. 360 Checking is the former ING Direct Electric Orange. The account is still as electric as it had been, despite the name change.
There’s an additional requirement in order to qualify for the $100 bonus. Capital One wants to encourage use of its debit card, and that’s understandable because each swipe generates revenue for the bank. To qualify for the bonus, new customers must use the debit card to make five purchases within 45 days. Or, if you’re a saver more than a spender, you can qualify by using the CheckMate mobile application for making deposits five times within the same time frame. Or, if you’re somewhere between, you can use the debit card or the CheckMate app for a total of five times.
Capital One 360 referrals. If you are a current customer or become one by July 3, and you use the Capital One 360 website to refer two friends who also open Capital One 360 accounts by July 15 — Savings or Checking — you will earn a total bonus of $76. You’ll earn the normal referral fee of $20 per friend, but you’ll earn an additional bonus of $36 by July 31. If your friends open the account by July 3, they’ll be eligible to receive the above bonuses, but if not, they’ll still receive the $10 bonus for being referred by a friend.
ShareBuilder. ShareBuilder, which is now also owned by Capital One, is joining the savings and checking accounts this year by offering bonuses for new customers. First is a $176 bonus for new ShareBuilder investing customers. If you open a new account by July 3 and deposit a minimum of $5,000 in cash into the account by July 19, ShareBuilder will add $176 to your cash balance. The bonus is not available for withdrawal for 120 days. Additionally, your minimum of $5,000 (or what’s left after stock market losses) must remain in your account for six months, or else ShareBuilder might take back the bonus. There are other restrictions, so it’s best to check the rules on ShareBuilder’s website.
If you open a ShareBuilder IRA, different than the ShareBuilder investing account above, you could earn a bonus of up to $576. One recommended method of getting the most out of this bonus is by rolling over an old employer’s 401(k) into a new ShareBuilder IRA. If you rollover or deposit $25,000, you’ll qualify for a bonus of $276. The bonus increases to $376 with a deposit of at least $50,000. With a deposit of at least $100,000, the bonus jumps to $576. There are other restrictions.
Business owners can also receive a savings of up to $176 if they sign up for a ShareBuilder 401(k) plan for their company. New customers have until August 4 to receive a quote and purchase the plan. Capital One offers low-cost 401(k) plans, including Individual 401(k) plans.
As an additional ongoing feature, customers who deposit checks with Capital One’s CheckMate application (read my review here, are entered in a sweepstakes in which they can win double the amount of the deposited check, up to $3,000, each time they scan and deposit a check.
I was skeptical with Capital One acquired ING Direct. The company seems to be following in ING’s footsteps. This Independence Day Sale was a long-standing annual tradition with the former owners. Capital One has exceeded expectations by continuing this sale and expanding the offerings and bonuses. If these bonuses sound interesting to you and you’ll qualify, open a checking account, open a savings account or read more information by following either of those links.
Updated August 13, 2015 and originally published July 3, 2013.