Optimizer Plus: an online option from Synchrony Bank
Synchrony Bank isn't new -- it was established with the FDIC in 1988 under its former name, GE Capital Retail Bank -- but its Optimizer Plus accounts are one of the latest additions to the world of online savings accounts. The company acquired MetLife Bank in January 2013 and re-labeled its offerings with the Optimizer Plus brand, which provides both short-term and long-term savings options.
Currently, customers can open the following online-based accounts through Optimizer Plus:
- Savings accounts
- Money market accounts
- Certificates of deposit (CDs)
- Individual retirement accounts (IRAs)
Award-winning CD rates
Optimizer Plus accounts offer competitive rates for all its savings products as of this writing, but its CD rates have been noted as particularly attractive.
In 2013, Money Magazine recognized Optimizer Plus as having the best 12-month CD. The publication also deemed the institution's CD as the best standalone account for 2013. Both honors came as a part of Money's annual Best Banks in America feature. The report surveyed 58 institutions to determine those with outstanding savings, checking and investment products.
Beyond having some of the best CD rates, Optimizer Plus says its customer service and secure banking options make it a prime choice for consumers. Online banking is available 24/7, and phone representatives are available six days a week to provide personal assistance to customers.
The bank also offers free identity theft protection, and deposits of up to $250,000 per depositor are insured by the FDIC.
Optimizer Plus account perks
Another benefit of Optimizer Plus accounts is its perks program. All members of the bank are enrolled in Optimizer Plus Perks, which rewards customers based upon their account balance and how long their accounts have been open.
New members start at the Optimizer Plus Basic level, which currently comes with the following rewards:
- Up to $5 in ATM fee reimbursements per statement cycle
- Free first order of checks for money market accounts
- Free identity theft resolution services
After a year with the bank, customers get bumped up to one of four loyalty tiers: silver, gold, platinum or diamond. These tiers each come with their own set of travel discounts. At the diamond level, customers who have been with Optimizer Plus for five years or who have $250,000 in deposits have access to a special banking phone line, VIP events and free wire transfers.
Although a relative newcomer on the scene of online bank accounts, Optimizer Plus offers some attractive benefits and some of the best interest rates currently available. Customers may also want to check out the company's IRA offerings and money market accounts. Together, the Optimizer Plus accounts offer a convenient way to consolidate both short-term savings and retirement funds in one easily accessible place.
For more on Optimizer Plus' latest rates and terms, please see the table below.