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Ponce Bank review: Hispanic American bank with several free checking accounts

Published by Business Insider on Thu, 15 Jul 2021


<p><img src="https://static2.businessinsider.com/image/60ec5628ca74780018ae8db1-1668/Ponce Bank logo on Personal Finance pattern background.png" border="0" alt="Ponce Bank logo on Personal Finance pattern background" data-mce-source="Ponce Bank; Alyssa Powell/Insider"></p><p></p><bi-shortcode id="table-of-contents-sticky" class="mceNonEditable" data-type="h2">Table of Contents: Masthead Sticky</bi-shortcode><bi-shortcode id="summary-shortcode" data-type="summary-shortcode" class="mceNonEditable" contenteditable="false">Summary List Placement</bi-shortcode><aside class="quick-tip headline-regular"><p><strong>The bottom line:</strong> <bi-inline-shortcode id="commerce-link" contenteditable="false" data-fields="brand,name" data-customtext="Ponce Bank" data-shouldlink="true" data-pid="60eddfef531b670011377265">Ponce Bank Simply Free Checking Account</bi-inline-shortcode> is a Hispanic American bank in New York. You might like it if you're looking for free checking accounts or high interest rates on CDs.</p></aside><h2>Overall bank rating</h2><table style="border-collapse: collapse; width: 100%;" border="1"><tbody><tr><td style="width: 50%;">Feature</td><td style="width: 50%;">Insider rating (out of 5)</td></tr><tr><td style="width: 50%;">Savings</td><td style="width: 50%; text-align: center;">3.75</td></tr><tr><td style="width: 50%;">Checking</td><td style="width: 50%; text-align: center;">4</td></tr><tr><td style="width: 50%;">CD</td><td style="width: 50%; text-align: center;">3.75</td></tr><tr><td style="width: 50%;">Money market account</td><td style="width: 50%; text-align: center;">3.75</td></tr><tr><td style="width: 50%;">Trustworthiness</td><td style="width: 50%; text-align: center;">4</td></tr><tr><td style="width: 50%;">Total</td><td style="width: 50%; text-align: center;">3.85</td></tr></tbody></table><h2>Pros and cons</h2><table style="border-collapse: collapse; width: 100%;" border="1"><tbody><tr><td style="width: 50%;">Pros</td><td style="width: 50%;">Cons</td></tr><tr><td style="width: 50%;"><ul><li>Most board members are Hispanic American, and Ponce serves a minority community</li><li>Competitive CD interest rates</li><li>Free checking accounts</li></ul></td><td style="width: 50%;"><ul><li>Only available in New York and New Jersey (Union City)</li><li>Low savings interest rate</li><li>Compounds interest monthly, not daily</li></ul></td></tr></tbody></table><h2>Savings</h2><bi-shortcode id="commerce-link" class="mceNonEditable" data-cardtype="credit-card" data-pid="60edde21b85e8c00114f82f2" data-type="undefined">Ponce Bank Savings Account</bi-shortcode><p>You only need to keep $100 in your <bi-inline-shortcode id="commerce-link" contenteditable="false" data-fields="name" data-customtext="" data-shouldlink="true" data-pid="60edde21b85e8c00114f82f2">Ponce Bank Savings Account</bi-inline-shortcode> to waive the $5 monthly service fee. However, you would earn a much better interest rate with an <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/personal-finance/best-high-yield-savings-accounts-rates-right-now" target="_blank" rel="noopener">online high-yield savings account</a>.</p><h2>Checking</h2><bi-shortcode id="commerce-link" class="mceNonEditable" data-cardtype="credit-card" data-pid="60eddfef531b670011377265" data-type="undefined">Ponce Bank Simply Free Checking Account</bi-shortcode><p>The <bi-inline-shortcode id="commerce-link" contenteditable="false" data-fields="name" data-customtext="" data-shouldlink="true" data-pid="60eddfef531b670011377265">Ponce Bank Simply Free Checking Account</bi-inline-shortcode> is a good free checking account with no monthly fees or minimum balance. Ponce offers a few other types of checking accounts, too, most of which have no monthly fee.</p><h2>CD</h2><bi-shortcode id="commerce-link" class="mceNonEditable" data-cardtype="credit-card" data-pid="60ede147531b67001137726e" data-type="undefined">Ponce Bank Certificate of Deposit</bi-shortcode><p>Ponce Bank pays competitive interest rates on CDs. You can open a term of six months or less with only $500, and you'll need $1,000 to open a CD with a term over six months.</p><h2>Money market account</h2><bi-shortcode id="commerce-link" class="mceNonEditable" data-cardtype="credit-card" data-pid="60ede34b531b670011377272" data-type="undefined">Ponce Bank Money Market Account</bi-shortcode><p>The <bi-inline-shortcode id="commerce-link" contenteditable="false" data-fields="name" data-customtext="" data-shouldlink="true" data-pid="60ede34b531b670011377272">Ponce Bank Money Market Account</bi-inline-shortcode> comes with a debit card and paper checks. It could be a good place to keep your <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/personal-finance/what-is-an-emergency-fund" target="_blank" rel="noopener">emergency fund</a>, because you can use the card or checks to access your savings quickly if necessary.</p><h2>How Ponce Bank works</h2><p><bi-inline-shortcode id="commerce-link" contenteditable="false" data-fields="brand,name" data-customtext="Ponce Bank" data-shouldlink="true" data-pid="60eddfef531b670011377265">Ponce Bank Simply Free Checking Account</bi-inline-shortcode> is a minority depository institution; most of its board members are Hispanic American, and Ponce serves a minority community.</p><p>There are 12 branches in New York (Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens) and one in New Jersey (Union City). You can use an ATM for free at each branch location and at Citibank branches.</p><p>Branch hours vary slightly by location, but all are open Monday through Friday and closed on weekends. You can call customer service Monday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. ET, Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. ET, and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. ET.</p><p>The Ponce Bank mobile app has 4.8 out of 5 stars in the Apple store, and 4.5 out of 5 stars in the Google Play store.</p><p>Your deposits are <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/personal-finance/what-is-fdic-insurance" target="_blank" rel="noopener">FDIC insured</a> for up to $250,000, or up to $500,000 for joint accounts.</p><h2>Is Ponce Bank trustworthy'</h2><p><bi-inline-shortcode id="commerce-link" contenteditable="false" data-fields="brand,name" data-customtext="Ponce Bank" data-shouldlink="true" data-pid="60eddfef531b670011377265">Ponce Bank Simply Free Checking Account</bi-inline-shortcode> doesn't have any public controversies.</p><p>The Better Business Bureau gives Ponce Bank a <a href="https://www.bbb.org/us/ny/bronx/profile/bank/ponce-de-leon-federal-bank-0121-14639" target="_blank" rel="noopener">B- in trustworthiness</a>. The BBB evaluates trustworthiness by looking at responses to customer complaints, honesty in advertising, and openness about business practices.</p><p>The BBB states that it gives Ponce a B- because the bank has failed to respond to half of the customer complaints on the BBB website. But considering Ponce only has two customer complaints in total, you may want to take this B- grade with a grain of salt.</p><h2>How Ponce Bank compares to similar institutions</h2><p>We've compared Ponce Bank to two other Hispanic American banks in New York: <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/personal-finance/popular-bank-review" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Popular Bank</a> and International Finance Bank.</p><table style="border-collapse: collapse; width: 100%; height: 135px;" border="1"><tbody><tr style="height: 72px;"><td style="width: 33.3333%; height: 72px;"><img src="https://static3.businessinsider.com/image/60ef42f161b8600019f1720c-426/Ponce Logo.jpg" border="0" alt="Ponce" data-mce-source="Ponce"></td><td style="width: 33.3333%; height: 72px;"><img src="https://static2.businessinsider.com/image/60de081212b6f300180a324f-1200/Popular bank logo.jpg" border="0" alt="Popular Bank" data-mce-source="Popular Bank"></td><td style="width: 33.3333%; height: 72px;"><img src="https://static1.businessinsider.com/image/60ef4308a8d8c00019b0339d-426/IFB logo.jpg" border="0" alt="IFB" data-mce-source="IFB"></td></tr><tr style="height: 21px;"><td style="width: 33.3333%; height: 21px;"><p><strong>New York branches</strong></p><p>12 (and 1 in Union City, NJ)</p></td><td style="width: 33.3333%; height: 21px;"><p><strong>New York branches</strong></p><p>23 (and some NJ branches)</p></td><td style="width: 33.3333%; height: 21px;"><p><strong>New York branches</strong></p><p>1</p></td></tr><tr style="height: 21px;"><td style="width: 33.3333%; height: 21px;"><p><strong>Standout feature</strong></p><p>Free checking accounts</p></td><td style="width: 33.3333%; height: 21px;"><p><strong>Standout feature</strong></p><p>Rewards program</p></td><td style="width: 33.3333%; height: 21px;"><p><strong>Standout feature</strong></p><p>ATM refunds</p></td></tr><tr style="height: 21px;"><td style="width: 33.3333%; height: 21px;"><bi-inline-shortcode id="commerce-link" contenteditable="false" data-fields="brand,name" data-customtext="Open an account" data-shouldlink="true" data-pid="60eddfef531b670011377265">Ponce Bank Simply Free Checking Account</bi-inline-shortcode></td><td style="width: 33.3333%; height: 21px;"><bi-inline-shortcode id="commerce-link" contenteditable="false" data-fields="brand,name" data-customtext="Open an account" data-shouldlink="true" data-pid="60de1069531b670011376df9">Popular Bank Everyday Checking Account</bi-inline-shortcode></td><td style="width: 33.3333%; height: 21px;"><a href="https://www.ifbbank.com/personal/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Open an account</a></td></tr></tbody></table><h3>Ponce Bank vs. Popular Bank</h3><p><a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/personal-finance/popular-bank-review" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Popular Bank</a> has more branches than Ponce Bank, so it may be the more convenient option for you.</p><p>Ponce has several free checking accounts to choose from. But you might prefer Popular if you have enough money in your accounts to qualify for its <a href="https://www.popularbank.com/checking/popular-rewards/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">rewards program</a>. Rewards members can waive a variety of fees and receive ATM fee refunds.</p><h3>Ponce Bank vs. International Finance Bank</h3><p>International Finance Bank is primarily in Florida, and it only has one New York branch. You might prefer Ponce Bank if there's a branch closer to your home or office.</p><p>But you may like International Finance Bank if you travel regularly. The bank refunds up to five out-of-network ATM fees each month, including fees from international ATMs.</p><bi-shortcode id="related-content-module" class="mceNonEditable" data-type="more-savings-coverage" data-sheetname="More Savings Coverage">Related Content Module: More Savings Coverage</bi-shortcode><p><a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/personal-finance/ponce-bank-review#comments">Join the conversation about this story &#187;</a></p>
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