Banking Deals of the Week: Feb. 3

Foraging for decent bank deals these days is like panning for gold in your bathtub — it passes the time but you’ll be more disappointed going out than you were going in.

OK, we’re half-kidding. There are some good bank deals out there but they’re really beginning to thin out. Many banks are cutting the rates on certificates of deposit and bank savings and checking accounts. So last year’s 3% CD rate is now this year’s 2.5% CD rate — if you’re lucky.

Of course, the primary reason is the lousy economy. The federal government says it must borrow $1.6 trillion in 2010 — that’s approximately $15,000 for every U.S. household. Our national debt burden, according to Washington think tank the Heritage Foundation, is expected to total $8.5 trillion over the next 10 years.

Economically, that’s a house that cannot stand and banks know it. Why should they offer a 3.5% short-term CD rate when 10-year U.S. Treasury yields are down to 3.65% these days? Even 30-year U.S. Treasuries are only yielding 4.57% this week. With long-term bond rates that low, banks aren’t about to give away the store.

So let’s not sugarcoat it, the bank rate landscape these days is a bleak one. But that said, there are some diamonds in the rough and BankingMyWay is committed to finding them for you.

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