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Bank of America (BAC) to Expand SafeBalance Account Fee Waivers

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Bank of America Corporation (BAC - Free Report) has planned to expand the monthly maintenance fee waiver for the SafeBalance account. From this November, accounts with a minimum daily balance of $500 or more will have the $4.95 monthly fee waived. Moreover, accounts with an owner under the age of 25 will have the fee waived, regardless of the daily balance.

Previously, clients had to be enrolled in school to qualify for the fee waiver. The Preferred Rewards clients will also continue to have their monthly fee waived.

SafeBalance is an easy-to-use account that helps clients manage day-to-day finances with no overdraft fees.

With more than 5 million accounts, SafeBalance was created in 2014. Meeting the standards for safe and affordable bank accounts, SafeBalance represents more than 50% of new checking account openings.

Mary Hines Droesch, the head of consumer and small business products at BAC, stated, “This milestone reflects our commitment to providing simple and transparent solutions to our clients at every stage of their financial journey, and to helping them achieve financial wellness.”

Notably, SafeBalance is part of BofA’s suite of product offerings, which include Balance Assist, Balance Connect, Secured Credit Cards and Affordable Home Loans. These offerings are a combination of transparent, easy-to-use products, helping clients budget, save, spend and borrow carefully and confidently.

Balance Assist is a low-cost way to manage clients’ short-term liquidity needs, as clients can borrow only the amount they need, up to $500 (in increments of $100) for a $5 flat fee. The repayments are made in three equal monthly installments over a 90-day period. With this, clients can navigate unexpected expenses while strengthening their credit.

Balance Connect provides overdraft protection through the ability for clients to link up to five accounts to their checking accounts while increasing simplicity and accessibility through digital sign-up and management.

In terms of providing affordable home loans, in 2019, BofA launched the Community Homeownership Commitment, which has helped more than 42,000 low and moderate-income homebuyers achieve homeownership through low down payment loans and down payment, and closing cost grants. By 2025, the bank expects to help more than 60,000 individuals purchase homes.

BofA’s product suite also has a “Keep the Change” feature. This tool helps clients build savings by automatically depositing spare change from rounded-up debit card transactions into a savings account. Since 2015, the program has helped clients direct more than $15 billion in excess change to savings accounts.

BAC continues to spend on technological advancements. Also, the company is set to embark on an ambitious expansion plan to open financial centers in new and existing markets. By 2026, it plans to expand its financial center network into nine new markets. Moreover, it is committed to providing modern and state-of-the-art financial centers through its ongoing renovation and modernization projects.

Over the past three years, the company has been renovating and updating its existing financial centers across the country. These initiatives will likely enable BAC to improve digital offerings and cross-sell several products.

In the past six months, shares of BAC have gained 1.4% compared with the industry’s rise of 5.5%.


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Currently, BAC carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Restructuring Efforts by Other Finance Firms

Interactive Brokers (IBKR - Free Report) unveiled a game-changing feature for Hungarian investors — Tax-Beneficial Savings (“TBSZ”) accounts. This will empower investors to make the most of their wealth-building efforts.

TBSZ accounts offer Hungarian tax residents an attractive opportunity to enjoy substantial tax reductions on their investments. These accounts are designed to foster wealth accumulation and savings, featuring low account minimums and access to a diverse array of global products, including ETFs, across 150 markets.

One of the standout features of IBKR’s TBSZ accounts is flexibility. Eligible investors can actively trade, explore investment opportunities across various asset classes and adjust their portfolios in response to evolving market conditions. With no limits on the amount that can be invested and the freedom to trade in any year the account is open, Hungarian investors have newfound flexibility to craft their financial strategies.

The Bank of New York Mellon Corporation (BK - Free Report) partnered with payments company Trustly to launch an open banking payments solution called Bankify.

Bankify brings together BNY Mellon’s transaction payments expertise and Trustly’s market-leading open banking capabilities to help organizations receive consumer payments from accounts seamlessly, with guaranteed funds for business receivables.

With the help of this payments solution, clients of BK will be in a better position to offer end-users the ability to make payments directly from their bank accounts, in contrast to using credit or debit cards and third-party payment platforms.

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