Monday, November 9, 2015

New Online CD Management Functionality at Ally Bank

Only a few days after I published a blog post on how to give advance instructions to Ally Bank to not renew a CD (Advance Request to Not Renew Ally Bank CDs at Maturity), Ally has added functionality to its online banking interface to allow modifying what happens to the CD proceeds of taxable CDs at maturity. So although the instructions in the previous blog post still will work, it now is much easier to make changes to taxable CDs using the new online functionality. 

The new functionality also allows changing the interest disbursement option (reinvest, mail a check, or distribute to another Ally or non-Ally account), and changing the term of the CD if you choose to renew. 

For IRA CDs, you still must call or use online chat to make changes.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Reading Blog Posts in Email

If you are an email subscriber and tried to read the last blog post in email, you may have noticed that it was garbled. If so, this is because the screen shots don't appear in email, and instead you see either nothing or a bunch of garbled text. The fix is simple: click on the blog post title at the beginning of the email, and because the title is a link to the blog, a new window or tab should open showing the blog post directly on the blog, and the screen shots will appear properly. If for some reason the link doesn't work, simply type into your browser address bar to take you to the blog, and you can then read any of the blog posts.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Advance Request to Not Renew Ally Bank CDs at Maturity

As a follow up to my post about what to do with maturing CDs, I wanted to share that you can request in advance that your CDs at Ally Bank not be renewed at maturity. I think you can do this by phone, but I have only done it using online chat. In this post I describe how I've done it, and how you can too.

Monday, November 2, 2015

CD 5-Year Report Card: Part 3

In the first two posts in this series, I compared the 5-year return of a 5-year direct CD to a 5-year Treasury security, and provided a fairly detailed explanation of how to evaluate risk and return of fixed-income investments, such as CDs, bonds (including Treasuries), and bond funds. In this post, I conclude the series by presenting the 5-year returns of various Vanguard bond funds, and by comparing these results to the CD and Treasury in terms of risk as well as return.