Online Banking Site Launched for U.S. Soldiers

Citizens Bank starts up niche online banking service for military.

Woman using laptop and cell phone for online banking account.
(Image credit: Oscar Wong/Getty Images)

Citizens Bank of Edmond, an Oklahoma-based community bank, has partnered with financial technology startup Nymbus to launch Roger, a digital bank specifically for newly enlisted military members and their families.

Roger provides products and services including direct deposit forms and a round-up feature for debit card purchases, according to its website.

Direct deposit funds are insured through FDIC-insured Citizens Bank, and all customer deposits under the bank and Roger would be combined for a total insurance amount of $250,000. Early access to those funds depends on the timing of the payment submission file from the payer, but the website shows that it will usually make the funds available on the day the payment file is received, which may be up to two days earlier than the scheduled payment date.

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Roger's round-up feature will automatically round up debit card purchases to the nearest dollar and transfer that amount from the user's checking account into their savings account. According to the website, Roger will match up to $100 of round-ups in the first 90 days after an account is opened and deposit the amount into a savings account on the first business day afterward.

Many new recruits have no bank account

In a statement, Citizens CEO and U.S. Army veteran Jill Castilla said she had little access to her bank accounts or other financial tools when she enlisted at the age of 19.

“Each year, as many as two-thirds of the 170,000 new recruits show up at basic training without a bank account,” Castilla said. “But for many of those recruits with an account, their direct deposit form isn't accurate enough for the military to process it. Working with Nymbus, we set out to make the transition into service easy.” 

Last year, Nymbus, which partners with community banks and credit unions to launch niche digital banks, teamed up with New Jersey’s ConnectOne Bank to offer digital banking services. It also worked with Florida-based Saint Louis Bank to launch banking services for small- to medium-size law firms and other members of the legal community.

In 2021, Nymbus and Florida-based PeoplesBank expanded their existing partnership, with Nymbus working to modernize the bank’s core banking platform.

Kathryn Pomroy

For the past 18+ years, Kathryn has highlighted the humanity in personal finance by shaping stories that identify the opportunities and obstacles in managing a person's finances. All the same, she’ll jump on other equally important topics if needed. Kathryn graduated with a degree in Journalism and lives in Duluth, Minnesota. She joined Kiplinger in 2023 as a contributor.