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财富家庭网> 阅读版面 > Banking Interests And Fees
     
 
Banking Interests And Fees
 
     
 
All About Interest

On accounts that pay interest, there are two important facts that you should consider so you can choose the account that will earn you the most interest.

1. When Interest is Paid

There are two times when interest is paid to accounts: once a month to some accounts or once every six months to other accounts.

  • Interest may be paid at the end of the month.
  • Interest may be paid twice a year, that is, once every six months. This semi-annual interest is paid on April 30 and October 31.

2. How Interest is Calculated:

Interest is calculated in three ways: daily, monthly, or every six months.

  • Daily means that the interest is calculated on the balance in the account every day. The bank adds up the interest from all those days and pays the total to you on the last day of every month.
  • Monthly means that the amount of interest is calculated on the last day of the month. Interest is usually calculated only on the lowest amount you had in your account all month. This is called your minimum monthly balance.
  • Every six months means that the amount of interest is calculated twice a year. It is based on your minimum balance during the six-month period ending April 30 and October 31.
Service plans and fees
When you open an account, there are many different services you can use. While some services are free, many of the bank's services are paid for by customers on a user pay basis.

A service charge is the fee you pay to buy a service provided by the bank. Service charges vary from bank to bank.

Most banks offer service plans or packages that allow you to use a number of the most common services for one monthly fee. All banks provide brochures that describe the different accounts they offer and the charges for all those accounts and other commonly used services.

How to Pay the Least Amount of Service Fees

  • Ask your bank about a monthly package where you pay a set fee and get a certain number of transactions and services.

    Some banks have low fee accounts that include a variety of financial services with monthly fees ranging between $2.95 and $4.00.

  • Many transactions, like paying bills, cost less in service fees if done at an ABM, by telephone or through the Internet, instead of at the branch counter. Contact your bank to find out how to register your bills for payment.
  • Ask about an account where there are no service charges if you maintain a minimum monthly balance.
  • Many banks offer special package plans for seniors and youth. Seniors over 60 don't have to pay charges on most services. Youth under 19 and students receive some services free or get a discount on service charges.
  • Use your own bank's ABM to avoid paying additional service fees.
  • Make one larger withdrawal instead of several smaller ones. For example, if you know you will need $100 for your expenses for a week, take out that amount from your account in one withdrawal, instead of repeated smaller amounts throughout the week.

Shopping for the best service fees

If you have access to a computer and the Internet, Industry Canada has a Financial Service Charges Calculator which helps consumers input their monthly transactions, calculate their service fees and compare them to those of other financial institutions. It is available at: http://strategis.ic.gc.ca .

 

 
 

     
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