Best Bank Offers of 2012

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They may not be offering much in the way of small business loans, but banks are feverishly working to enlist new account holders these days. Many of the world’s top online banks are working on a variety of deals that will attract people to mobile and e-banking services, including competitive rates, gifts, and free funds. Here are a few of the top offers out there right now:

ING Direct giving away $50 just for opening new account

That’s right. To start off 2012 with a bang, the branchless direct bank known as ING Direct is offering $50 to anyone who opens an Electric Orange Checking Account and makes three card purchases or three Person2Person Payments. The Electric Orange Checking Account offers free overdraft protection, zero ATM surcharges, and no monthly fees, so this deal sounds like a win-win situation for anyone who needs a new account.

High interest rates with Bank 2

Bank 2 is offering sky high interest rates right now: 3.01% APY checking and 2.01% APY on savings accounts. This includes no minimum funding, no monthly fees, and free e-statements and online checking account services. These rates are dependent on you making 12 credit card purchases a month and using their direct deposit system. The accounts max out at $15,000 in checking and $35,000 in savings, at which point your rate will drop to 0.10%.

Get a hi-tech gift from FirstBankIn exchange for keeping a solvent account, a $300 direct deposit, and making three bill payments, FirstBank is gifting its account holders with their choice of a Garmin GPS, an iPod Touch, or an Amazon Kindle. FirstBank’s checking account already offers many popular features, including no minimum balance, no monthly charges, and free mobile, online banking, and Bill Pay.

Free money from Valley National Bank

Valley National Bank, which currently has 211 branches in the New Jersey, New York, and Long Island area, is promoting a $150 checking bonus to people who create a new checking account. They say it will accompany their “fingertip banking” system, which allows you to view your account balance, transfer funds and get balance alerts with mobile and text banking. The first $75 comes automatically upon opening the account; the second half requires you to enroll in the online service and make direct deposits.These deals may not last until 2013, so if you’re looking to open a new account and have one of these banks in your area, you may want to stop in for a visit. You could find yourself with some great new interest rates, gifts or bonus money.

About the Author: This Guest Post was written by Sam Peters, who frequently blogs about topics relating to personal finance, money, and ways to bank better and smarter.