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High APY for Online Savers

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Overall bank rating

Pros and cons

Savings


Annual Percentage Yield (APY)


0.50% APY


Minimum Deposit Amount


None


Annual Percentage Yield (APY)


0.50% APY


Minimum Deposit Amount


None

More Information

  • Only available to residents of states where there are no PNC branch locations
  • Minimum account balance of $1 to earn APY
  • No monthly maintenance fee
  • No minimum opening deposit

The PNC High Yield Savings Account is probably the bank’s best product. It pays a competitive interest rate if you keep at least $1 in your account and doesn’t charge monthly maintenance fees.

This account is only available online, and only to residents of states where there are no PNC branches. You aren’t eligible to open a PNC High Yield Savings Account if you live in one of the following states:

  • Alabama
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Maryland
  • Michigan
  • Missouri
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • Texas
  • Virginia
  • Washington DC
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin

PNC does offer other savings accounts for in-person bankers, but rates are significantly lower, and there are monthly maintenance fees.

Checking


Annual Percentage Yield (APY)


For people who live near a branch, it’s — Spend: None. Reserve: 0.01%. Growth: 0.02% to 0.03%. If you don’t live in an area with a branch, it’s — Spend: None. Reserve: None. Growth: 0.50%


Minimum Deposit Amount


$0 or $25


Annual Percentage Yield (APY)


For people who live near a branch, it’s — Spend: None. Reserve: 0.01%. Growth: 0.02% to 0.03%. If you don’t live in an area with a branch, it’s — Spend: None. Reserve: None. Growth: 0.50%


Minimum Deposit Amount


$0 or $25

Pros

  • No minimum opening deposit
  • Possible to waive monthly service fees
  • Budgeting tool
  • Access to Spend (checking account), Reserve (interest checking account), and Growth (savings account)
  • Earn competitive APY on Growth balance
  • Reimburses up to $5/month in out-of-network ATM fees charged by providers
  • Reserve and Growth funds can act as overdraft protection for the Spend account
  • Low Cash Mode helps prevent overdraft fees on Spend account

Cons

  • Spend and Reserve balances do not earn interest
  • $3 out-of-network ATM fee
  • $7 or $0 monthly service fee depending where you live
  • Limited customer service hours


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Read Our Review A looong arrow, pointing right

More Information

  • 1 Virtual Wallet® is actually 3 accounts: Spend (checking), Reserve (interest checking), and Growth (savings)
  • Low Cash Mode gives you 24 hours to bring your account balance to $0 before you’re charged overdraft penalties on your Spend account
  • You can just have Spend, or choose to add Reserve and Growth at no extra cost
  • To waive the monthly service fee you must meet one of the following requirements: make a monthly direct deposit of at least $500 per month to the Spend account; make monthly balance of $500 to the Spend + Reserve accounts; be over the age of 62
  • Earn $50 if you open a Virtual Wallet® and receive $500 in direct deposits in first 60 days, $200 if you open a Virtual Wallet® with Performance Spend and receive $2,000 in direct deposits in first 60 days,
  • 2,400 branch locations and 9,000 ATMs
  • FDIC insured

PNC has an online checking account called PNC Bank Virtual Wallet®. Even though it’s a digital product, you can open a PNC Bank Virtual Wallet® if you live in a market with branches.

PNC calls its everyday checking features Spend. At no extra cost, you can also open a PNC Bank Virtual Wallet® package with two additional buckets: Reserve (interest checking) and Growth (long-term savings). You’ll earn a high interest rate on your Growth balance.

CDs


Annual Percentage Yield (APY)


0.01% to 0.04% APY


Minimum Deposit Amount


$1,000


Annual Percentage Yield (APY)


0.01% to 0.04% APY


Minimum Deposit Amount


$1,000

More Information

  • Terms ranging from 7 days to 10 years; promotional terms ranging from 9 to 61 months
  • Only CDs with terms between 3 and 36 months can be opened online
  • Branches in AL, DC, DE, FL, GA, IL, IN, KS, KY, MD, MI, MO, NJ, NY, NC, OH, PA, SC, TX, VA, WI, and WV
  • For terms under 3 months, early withdrawal penalty is all the interest earned; from 3 months to less than 1 year, early withdrawal penalty is 3 months interest; for terms greater than 1 year, early withdrawal penalty is 6 months interest

PNC offers more types of CDs than most banks, including regular term CDs and a Ready Access CD, which doesn’t charge a penalty if you withdraw funds before the CD matures.

However, CDs are only available to residents of states where there are branches, so if you don’t live in one of 21 states or DC, you’re out of luck.

Money market


Annual Percentage Yield (APY)


0.02% to 0.05% APY


Minimum Deposit Amount


$100


Annual Percentage Yield (APY)


0.02% to 0.05% APY


Minimum Deposit Amount


$100

Pros

  • Comes with a debit card
  • Earn a higher rate with higher balances if you have a Performance Select Checking account

Cons

  • Low APY
  • $100 opening deposit
  • Maximum opening deposit of $10,000
  • No paper checks
  • $12 monthly service charge
  • Limited customer service hours

More Information

  • Minimum balance of $1 to earn APY
  • Avoid the $12 monthly service charge when you maintain a $5,000 average monthly balance
  • Earn Relationship Rates with Performance Checking
  • Earn Relationship Rates with Performance Select Checking, and increase rate with a higher balance

The PNC Premiere Money Market Account isn’t a very strong product. Rates are low, and your opening deposit must be between $100 and $10,000. You also have to maintain a $5,000 balance to avoid the $12 monthly service charge.

How PNC Bank works

PNC Bank has around 2,600 branches across 21 US states and Washington DC. Here are the states with brick-and-mortar locations:

  • Alabama
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Maryland
  • Michigan
  • Missouri
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • Texas
  • Virginia
  • Washington DC
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin

Your decision to bank with PNC could largely depend on whether you live near a branch. You have to live in a state with branches to open a CD. However, you can only access high-yield savings options if you live in a market where there are no branches.

PNC received 4.8 out of 5 stars in the Apple store and 4.4 out of 5 stars in the Google Play store. You’ll download a separate app if you have a Virtual Wallet, and the Virtual Wallet app has 4.4 stars in the Apple store and 4.3 stars in the Google Play store.

PNC has a feature for its Spend account to help avoid overdraft fees called Low Cash Mode. The perk, available through the bank’s mobile app, gives you 24 hours to bring your account balance to $0 before you’re charged overdraft penalties. You also have the option to pay or return individual checks and payments made using your checking account when your balance is negative. 

To contact customer support, call Monday through Friday between 7:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. ET, or weekends from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. ET. The bank also has a live chat function, but you’ll have to check back later if all representatives are busy; there’s no way to queue. 

Your PNC accounts are FDIC insured for up to $250,000, or $500,000 for joint accounts.

Is PNC Bank trustworthy?

The Better Business Bureau gives PNC Bank an A+ rating. A good BBB rating signifies a company responds effectively to customer complaints, has honest advertising practices, and is transparent in how it handles business.

Despite PNC’s great BBB score, the bank has had one recent public scandal. In 2019, PNC was accused of aiding a man in carrying out a fake debt relief project, which cost customers a total of $85 million. In 2014, PNC had suspected the man of running a scheme and closed his bank accounts. But nine months later, the bank let him open more accounts.

How PNC Bank compares

We’ve compared PNC with one bank that has both physical and


digital banking

capabilities (Capital One), and one bank with branches in the same parts of the US as PNC (Wells Fargo).

Choosing between these three financial institutions may ultimately come down to where you live, and what type of banking experience you’re going for. 

You may like PNC Bank if you’re able to get the accounts you want in the state that you live in. For instance, if you live in a state that offers the bank’s high-yield savings account it may be a worthwhile option for you to explore. 

You also may prefer PNC if you want to get money market account. The PNC Premiere Money Market Account may not be its strongest product, but Capital One and Bank of America don’t have a money market account at all.

Capital One is primarily an online bank, but it does have branch locations in eight US states and Washington DC. Unlike PNC, Capital One doesn’t have rules about what you can access if you live in a market with or without branches. It pays competitive rates on savings accounts and CDs, and unlike PNC, it lets you open a standalone checking account.

Wells Fargo is a brick-and-mortar bank. Although it has online banking capabilities, there aren’t any online-specific accounts. Wells Fargo has branches in more states than PNC, so if you prefer in-person banking and live near a Wells Fargo branch, you may prefer it to PNC.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

What is the minimum deposit for PNC Bank?

You don’t need to make an initial deposit if you open the PNC High Yield Savings℠ Account. The PNC Bank Virtual Wallet® also requires $25 to open at a branch or $0 online.

Does PNC have a monthly fee?

You might have to pay a monthly service fee on the bank’s standard savings and


checking accounts

in some states if you don’t meet certain minimum balance requirements.

If you don’t live nearby a PNC branch, you may be eligible for the PNC High Yield Savings℠ Account, which doesn’t charge any monthly service fees.



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