Personal Finance Blog By MoneyRates - June 2007

INVESTING UPDATE

June 15, 2007

By MoneyRates Team | Money Rates Columnist

Dividend Stocks - Yields have increased in 2007 on dividends offered by companies in the S&P500 Index.Examples of large companies with strong earnings which pay dividends include: US Bancorp (USB) 4.61%, Verizon (VZ) 4.30%, Citigroup (C) 4.10%, AT&T (T) 3.64%, and Pfizer (PFE) 4.31%.
Money Funds - GE Capital is offering their GE Interest Plus Notes which yield 5.43% on balances of over $50,000 and have limited check-writing features. These notes are uninsured. GE Capital is rated AAA+ by S&P.
Exchange Traded Bond Funds - traded on the NYSE like a stock these funds offered by iShares are indexed like a mutual fund index but with lower expense ratios than a mutual fund. The iShares 1-3 year Treasury Bond Fund(SHY) is currently yielding 4.65%.
CD Auction - Zions First National Bank has a daily live CD auction allowing CD investors to bid on CD rates. Recent winning bid on 1-year CD was 5.48% APY.
Mutual Fund money market - TIAA-CREF MMF (5.24%) and Harbor MMF (5.05%) both offer investors a mutual fund money market with low minimums, check-writing capabilities, and competitive yield. Mutual fund money markets invest in short-term government-backed or highly-rated securities and aim to achieve a $1 net asset value at all times.
U.S. Treasury Securities - 5.20% yield on the 10-year Treasury Bond marking its highest level since August 2006.
everbank.com is offering investors the chance to diversify their portfolio by buying CDs denominted in foreign currency. Depending upon the country these CDs may pay interest at a higher rate than we find in the U.S. Everbank is a FDIC-insured bank but principal invested in WorldCurrency CDs is not guaranteed as a currency can fluctuate when converting back to U.S. dollars. Visitors to money-rates.com have reported good results with these CDs as a way to diversify their portfolio internationally.

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SAVINGS RATES UPDATE

June 14, 2007

By MoneyRates Team | Money Rates Columnist

Today's bank rate offerings include New Dominion Bank which is offering variable rate CDs with an interest rate tied to the Wall Street Journal prime rate. The bank will adjust the rate on the CDs as the prime rate increases or decreases. Current rates are 1-year (5.50% APY), 18-month (5.55% APY), 2-year (5.60% APY), and 2.5-year (5.60% APY). Kaiser Federal Bank has a 5-year 5.50% APY for IRA accounts of $225,000 or more. Other rate specials this week include:
10.00% APY from Affinity Bank on their savings account for kids only (applies to balances up to $500)

6.01% APY from Premier Valley Bank on balances up to $25,000. Requires 10 ATM/debit card point-of-sale transactions, electronic account statements, internet banking, and one direct deposit or ACH auto debit to achieve yield and/or avoid fees

6.01% APY from Everbank on their introductory offer checking account ($1,500 minimum)

6.00% APY from FNBO Direct on their online savings account (no minimum balance)

5.50% APY from Gloucester County Federal Savings Bank on savings accounts balances of $100,000 and over. 90-day rate guarantee

5.50% APY from Bank of Illinois on VIP Elite Checking account for balances up to $25,000. Requirements to qualify include 10 or more check card transactions a month, one direct deposit a month , and an electronic delivery of statements

5.45% APY from NetBank on their 18-month CD ($1,000 minimum)

5.41% APY from World Savings Bank on their 6-month CD term

5.41% APY from Umbrella Bank on their 9-month CD term

5.40% APY from Countrywide Bank on their 9-month CD ($2,500 minimum)

5.39% APY from Tennessee Commerce Bank on savings accounts of $250,000 or greater

5.35% APY on 13-month CD from Flagstar Bank ($5,000 minimum)

ING Direct's Electric Orange checking account has tiered yields of 5.30% (+$100,000), 5.25% ($50,000-$99,999), and 4.00% ($0-$49,999). This checking account from ING Direct is paperless with ING providing a platform to send money to any person or business via electric checks. 1% cash back when using the Eletric Orange MasterCard Debit Card from June 1 to July 31, 2007.

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