banking

Best Banks for Retirees

With these institutions, retirees avoid pesky fees on checks and paper statements and have access to an array of additional wealth and investment services.

Best: TD Bank

www.td.com

Why it won: TD offers a dedicated checking account with perks well suited to retirees, who get to skip fees on some savings accounts, too. For in-person services, TD has branches that stretch along the East Coast.

Standout account: 60 Plus Checking has a low, $250 minimum daily balance requirement to waive the $10 monthly fee. 

Where it is: More than 1,100 branches in 15 eastern states and Washington, D.C. Terms and rates are for Delaware.

The 60 Plus Checking account targets those 60 or older with free standard checks, cashier’s checks, money orders and paper statements. Plus, the Simple Savings account is free if you’re 62 or older (for more, see The Best National Banks), and so is the Growth Money Market account, which offers a rate as high as 0.03% on a balance of $25,000 or more if you have a recurring transfer of at least $50 into the account each month (otherwise, it yields from 0.01% to 0.02%, depending on the balance). 

TD also offers investment and wealth management, including a robo-adviser platform ($5,000 minimum, or $25,000 minimum for some assistance from human advisers) and full-fledged advisory services. Those with at least $750,000 in investable assets are eligible for TD’s Private Client Wealth Group.

Runner-up: Fidelity Investments

www.fidelity.com

Why it won: Retirees who are willing to do their banking online will find a lot to like about Fidelity’s checking-account equivalent.

Standout account: Fidelity Cash Management is free, earns interest and provides extra deposit insurance.

Fidelity Investments doesn’t have a full-service bank, but its Cash Management account offers all the components of a low-cost checking account. It requires no monthly fee or minimum balance, and it yields a decent 0.25%. Standard checks, cashier’s checks and paper statements are free, and the account reimburses all domestic out-of-network ATM fees. Although Cash Management is technically a brokerage account, funds have Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. coverage, and you’re insured for up to $1.25 million against bank failure—rather than the standard $250,000 per depositor per institution—thanks to a cash-sweep program that holds funds at various institutions. 

You don’t have to open any other Fidelity account to use Cash Management, but plenty of options are available if you want investment services, from robo adviser Fidelity Go to in-depth financial-planning and investment advice ($250,000 asset minimum for Fidelity Wealth Services).

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