At a time when most banks and savings institutions are sending out notices saying that interest rates are falling, SmartyPig announced this morning that it is increasing the interest rate it pays savers from 2.01% to 2.15% APY. While these days the only companies raising interest rates are credit card companies, SmartyPig wants to stand out as a resource for savers by raising its rate too.
If you aren't familiar with SmartyPig, it's a website that helps users save toward specific goals, like an HDTV, new computer or home renovation, to name just a few. In addition to paying a leading interest rate, when you reach your goal, you can increase your savings total with bonuses of up to 12% at major retailers. Essentially it's an FDIC-insured savings program with a cash back bonus when you reach your goal.
"A bit of counter-programing in this economy," is how Bob Weinschenk, CEO of SmartyPig, described the interest rate increase to WalletPop in a phone interview late Friday. Bob explained that as he monitors the e-mails and tweets that come from SmartyPig users, the two most requested changes were for a higher interest rate and a bigger redemption program.
Weinschenk says he views each customer complaint as a gift and happily explained to WalletPop that he is excited about bringing a higher interest rate to SmartyPig customers and now, placing the company's focus on providing users a, "deeper, more comprehensive, redemption plan." Bob couldn't share any more details about the upcoming redemption changes except to say users would be pleased.
With more than $400 million in goals created and $150 million in goals reached, SmartyPig has quickly became a great resource for savers and is one of my top picks for personal finance products.
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