This may be old news to some of you, but I was just going through a stack of unopened mail when I ran across a flyer for ING Direct’s new “Electric Orange” checking account. In short, it’s a fee-free online checking account with a current APY of 3.00% for balances under $50k. This bumps up to 5.05% for balances between $50k-$100k, and 5.30% for greater than $100k.
Of course, a major concern with online accounts is ATM access… In this case, you get free ATM transactions at over 32k locations nationwide via the Allpoint Network. I’ve never heard of Allpoint, but a quick search of their website reveals that there are 119 Allpoint ATMs within 50 miles of my house, and 560 within 100 miles.
The Electric Orange account also offers a MasterCard-branded debit card, free online billpay, and $0 liability for unauthorized purchases. The wording on this latter point is kind of strange; does it only cover fraudulent transactions if they involve a purchase, as opposed to a withdrawal?
If you have an ING Direct savings account, and you’re looking to expand into the realm of checking, the Electric Orange account might be right up your alley. I’m guessing that ING is hoping that the convenience of having checking and savings in one place is enough to offset the fact that their savings rate is at least 0.50% behind that of the competition. In fact, if I was looking for an online checking account, it very well might be.