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CIT Bank - An Old School Approach in a New World


May 12, 2021 ( Newswire) The global pandemic made the switch to online banking just that much easier for many people. But in actuality, online banking was already fast becoming the future before all this mess occurred - with rates and services that outstrip their brick-and-mortar competitors, it's really no wonder.

CIT Bank is one of the original online banking institutions, and it has thrived through the many ups and downs of a tumultuous, strange century. Headquartered in Pasadena, California since 2000, CIT Bank came through the dot-com bubble unscathed, and continued to march along despite the financial difficulties of 2008 - in short, it's a grizzled vet.

And that's a testament to their leadership and general business ethos. With more than 3,600 employees and being fully insured under the FDIC, CIT Bank is a legit stalwart, but the question is, how good is their service compared to other online competitors?

An online banking service like Axos offers many of the same features, including high interest rates on savings and checking accounts, but, on the other hand, poor CD rates and options. And while Ally Bank does offer greater CD solutions, their variety is not quite up to par with CIT Bank.

What CIT Bank gives you, then, is balance. It is a well-rounded option for customers who want a simple, no frills, safe platform for managing their finances.

Part of CIT Group, CIT Bank has pedigree and innovation inscribed in its very DNA. Its online banking branch intended to bring accessible banking to all Americans, and to do that they needed to provide low costs, intuitive designs, and solid services. Does CIT Bank check these boxes?

Let's look at some of the more notable, stand-out features of CIT Bank.

CIT Bank Highlights

  • Checking Accounts: a perk of CIT bank is that their normal interest rates apply to normal checking accounts. At less than 1% (better than national average), it still offers some value and return. It costs a minimum of $100 to open a checking account with CIT Bank.
  • Certificates of Deposit: this is another area in which CIT Bank shines. Unlike many online competitors, who are often poor in the CD department, CIT Bank gives you a slew of options for investing in CDs. While a conservate route, CDs offer low yield while being relatively safe: a great option for those with the long-view in mind, or are planning for retirement.
  • Money Market Accounts: a money market account is basically a deposit account that pays out an interest rate based on current money markets. Perhaps it is a little like stock investing, it can pay a nice, short-term yield. CIT Bank money market accounts give all customers the highest APY level, and, like their checking accounts, require but a minimum $100 initial deposit.
  • Overdraft Fees: unlike a lot of online banks, CIT Bank does not decline a purchase if you don't have the requisite funds available; they simply hit you with a $30 overdraft fee. This can be both good and bad. Sure, it saves us face, but it also hurts our wallet. Costumers are allowed up to 4 overdrafts in a 24-hour period. A real saving grace is the fact that you can link your checking to your savings account, and CIT Bank allows an automatic transfer without any fees or penalties.

Drawbacks of CIT Bank

While CIT Bank has many virtues working in its favor, there are some drawbacks that need to be addressed for honest disclosure. In fact, we are not in the business of promoting CIT Bank over other options. We only wish to project a holistic picture of the service which will allow readers to better decide for themselves which online bank to choose.

  • No ATM Network: despite being one of the first online banks, they lack what most other online services offer: a free ATM network. This means any and all ATM withdraws come with an attached fee.
  • High Minimum Deposits: this is a glaring feature that impedes their "accessibility" motto. With a $100 dollar minimum to open an account, and their top APY only available to customers with at least a $25,000 balance, you could say that CIT Bank is not for the faint of heart or those hard up for cash.
  • Making Deposits: what's more, it is a bit cumbersome to actually make cash deposits with CIT Bank. They can only be made via wire transfer, electronic transfer with another account, or by mail.

The Bottom Line - CIT Bank Shines Where It Counts

CIT Bank is hard to beat for those looking for a simple, online bank with aims to save for the long-term. With excellent yields on both savings and checking accounts, and the ability to invest in an array of CDs, CIT Bank covers the basics and allows your money to grow.

This is especially the case if you have considerable funds at your disposal. CIT Bank, therefore, may not be the best bet for young investors just starting out, or those in a less than advantageous financial situation. To reap the benefits of their soaring APY, it takes an upper middle-class wallet, or else extreme saving dedication.

An industry stalwart, CIT Bank is about as legit as they come. Start saving and investing - it's the best way to secure not only a safer future, but a happier one.

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