Updated April 10, 2019

Marcus by Goldman Sachs Review

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Marcus by Goldman Sachs offers savings accounts and CDs at high interest rates. But don't expect accounts with a lot of bells and whistles. Read on for the pros and cons.

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Marcus (previously GS Bank) is the online bank offered by the investment giant, Goldman Sachs. It offers savings products with very competitive rates and no minimum deposit and no services fees.

But there are no branches, no checking, and no ATM network. All banking is done online or over the phone.

Read on to see if it's right for you.

Services Offered

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Marcus by Goldman Sachs only offers savings products and personal loans. Here's a quick overview:

  • Online Savings Account: Earn competitive interest rates with as little as just $1 deposit. This is like a typical savings account, except that there are no physical branches or an ATM network.

  • High-Yield and No-Penalty CDs: CDs have $500 minimum opening deposit. You lock in a rate, so you know exactly how much interest you will earn. You can earn a higher APY if you can commit to tying up your money for longer.

  • Personal Loans: Get a fixed-rate personal loan up to $40,000. Goldman Sachs charges no origination fee, no prepayment penalty, no late fees.

For customers opening accounts after April 15, 2016, there is a maximum amount of $1,000,000 for all of your individual and joint deposit accounts combined.

Marcus Online Savings Account

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The online savings account offers a very high rate, though you'll have to sacrifice some conveniences. Here are some details:

  • Minimum of $1 to earn the stated APY
  • No minimum opening deposit requirement
  • No monthly service fees
  • No transaction or transfer fees
  • Daily compounding interest
  • FDIC insured

Like all savings accounts, federal regulation limits you to 6 withdrawals and/or transfers per month.

There is no mobile check deposit feature or ATM card. You'll need to transfer money in and out of an external account. So there may be some delay when transferring funds.

The limit is $125,000 per transfer for online transfers. If you do your banking over the phone, there is no limit as to how much money you can transfer.

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Certificate of Deposits

Marcus by Goldman Sachs offers two types of CDs:

  • High-Yield CDs (Terms of 6 months to 6 years):
    The minimum to open is $500. But you have 30 days to fully fund your CD. You can continue to add funds into it for 30 days after account opening.

    Your rate is locked in for the entire term. If you can commit to not touching your money for a year, the 12-month CD offers one of the best rates on the market. Longer terms offer higher APYs.

    High-yield CDs come with a 10-day rate guarantee. If the rate on your selected CD goes up within the first 10 days, you'll automatically get the higher rate.

    What is the penalty for early withdrawals from Marcus CDs?
    It depends on the term of your CD. Here's how it breaks down:
    • Terms up to 1 year: 90 days of interest on the principal
    • Terms from 1-5 years: 270 days of interest on the principal
    • Terms over 5 years: 365 days of interest on the principal

  • No Penalty CD (one fixed term of 13 months):
    This CD gives you the flexibility to withdraw your full balance with no penalty (starting from 7 days after account funding). This is good if you suddenly need your money. The minimum to open is $500 (you cannot add more funds).

    The rate on this CD is actually a little bit better than the online savings rate. And the ability to withdraw gives you some peace of mind that your money isn't tied up.

Your CDs have a 10-day grace period after maturity. Once your CD matures, you have 10 days to either withdraw the funds, renew the CD, or close it and open a new CD with a different term.

You can also have your CD's interest disbursed to an external account. You just have to call customer service to arrange it.

Tip: CD laddering is a smart savings strategy. This is when you split your investments into different CDs with staggered maturity dates. As each CD matures, you can re-invest the money into a new CD with the new current rate.

This way you can get higher interest rates on longer-term CDs without tying up all of your money for a long time. Read more about CD laddering from Marcus.

Personal Loans

Marcus also offers personal loans that can be used for anything from debt consolidation to home improvement. Here are some details:

  • Personal loans from $3,500 to $40,000
  • Fixed interest rate for the entire life of the loan
  • Fixed monthly payments
  • No fees ever. No origination fee, no prepayment penalty, no closing fees, and no late fees (you only pay interest for the additional days).

You can first see your loan options in just a matter of minutes, without affecting your credit score. If you don't like your options, you don't have to go through the official application process.

Why We Like Marcus by Goldman Sachs

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  • High interest rates. Interest rates are competitive with other online savings and CDs, and as much as 25x more than traditional brick-and-mortar banks.

  • Low opening deposits. There is no opening deposit for the Online Savings Account, and only $500 for CDs.

  • No fees. There are no monthly service fees, no transaction fees, and no transfer fees.

  • FDIC insured. If the bank goes out of business or runs out of money, the FDIC will reimburse you up to $250,000.

  • Extended customer service hours. You can reach representatives via phone from 8 AM to 10 PM Monday - Friday and 9 AM to 7 PM Saturday - Sunday.

  • Interest calculators. Marcus provides calculators to estimate of the amount of interest you'll earn. This could be the motivating factor you need to start putting money away.

  • Up to 6 beneficiaries. You can name up to 6 pay-on-death beneficiaries per account.

Downsides

In exchange for high rates, Marcus does away with a lot of features.

  • No mobile deposits. If you want to make a deposit, you'll have to do so the old-fashioned way - via the mail. You can also deposit the money into an external account and then make a transfer online. Either way, it's extra steps.

  • No checking accounts. If you like to keep all of your accounts in one place, this could be a downside.

  • No ATM card or ATM network. There is no way to get fast access to your funds.

  • No physical branches. All business must be done online or over the phone.

  • No mobile app. However, you can sign in to your account on your mobile phone and bank from there. Just less convenient than banking via app.

How It Compares

  • Ally: Ally offers a larger variety of accounts than Goldman Sachs, including a checking account. Their accounts have no monthly fees and you don't need a minimum deposit for the checking or CD accounts. Ally also has a network of fee-free ATMs for you to access your funds.

    Ally is often a customer's favorite for their superior service and user-friendly interface and mobile app. Their customer service is available 24/7.

  • Capital One: Capital One 360 offers checking, online savings, and CDs. The rates are lower than what Marcus by Goldman Sachs offers, but could be a good choice if you want all your banking in one place. We like Capital One 360's options for teen checking and kids savings.

    There are no monthly service fees. But they do charge steep overdraft protection fees if you opt into that service.

Bottom Line

Marcus by Goldman Sachs isn't meant to replace all your banking needs. It's good as a bare-bones savings account with high rates. You can park your money there and have it grow securely.

Your best returns will be achieved with longer deposits and higher balances. When you combine that with the limited fees, it can be a winning combination for you.

Just understand that there are no convenience features, like mobile deposits, ATM network, or mobile app.

Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author's alone. Please support CreditDonkey on our mission to help you make savvy decisions. Our free online service is made possible through financial relationships with some of the products and services mentioned on this site. We may receive compensation if you shop through links in our content.

Disclaimer: This content was first published on November 24, 2018. This content may have been updated on April 10, 2019. Information including rates, fees, terms and benefits may vary, be out of date, or not applicable to you. Information is provided without warranty. Please check the bank's website for updated information.

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