Monday, February 16, 2009

After the Fall: High Yield Checking Accounts

Another week, and more pain for savers.  Dollar Savings Direct continued their rate chopping from 3.20% APY to 3.05% APY on their online savings accounts.  While still offering one of the highest rates available, their margin is no longer much more than competitors.  Here's a roundup of some other rates we here at the LookBlog follow:
So what's a saver to do?  We mentioned a while back about High Yield checking accounts and the relatively high rates they are still offering as long as you are willing to jump through a few hoops.  The guys over at  have some great resources on what is available in your area, as well as a primer on how these checking accounts can still offer up these rates.  Long story short, by making you use your debit card they earn more on fees allowing them to keep a nice little spread while still offering you a high rate.  Check the site, its definitely worth a read.

As a NJ resident, I'm leaning more and more towards pulling the trigger and opening an account at The Provident bank.  Currently they are offering 5.01% APY on up to 25K and a $123 sign up bonus.  O how I salivate when looking at this compared to the meager online savings yields.  A couple more drops and I'm all but forced to open this up! 

Lets hope things start turning around soon!

One Love,

Sunday, February 1, 2009

So much for saving... VFINX in the dumps

A dollar saved is a dollar earned?  Not so much.  So I've been investing in Vanguard's 500 Index (VFINX) for quite some time now.  The graphic above shows the 10 year performance of the fund.  The end of 2007 to now has hit the fund hard erasing gains and causing negative performance.  Bah.  So... what's an investor to do?  Is it a fire sale? Time to buy some new shares? Dollar Cost Average?  Mmm with "experts" prediciting further struggles and the abysmal performance in January causing the year outlook to be just as bad (As January goes, so goes the year...)  its a hard call.  Wait and you could miss those huge upside days.  Invest now and you could see further losses.

They say this recession is worse and more far reaching than any before and that the boost in the stock market post-recession can be a long time away and isn't guaranteed.  Is it the end of an era?  I'm in it for the long haul so I'll stay put for now.  Invest in some more shares slowly and hope things start to turn around.  Hope Warren is right... be fearful when others are greedy, be greedy when others are fearful.  

Steelers just won the Super Bowl. Super.

One Love,