The best banks bring the highest levels of trust, security, and benefits to their clients.
Here’s a comprehensive list of the 10 best national banks you probably see, or don't see every day.
1. JP Morgan Chase
JP Morgan Chase bank, one of the oldest and most well-respected institutions in the financial world, resulted from the merging of several U.S. banking companies over the last twenty-five years.
Headquartered in New York City, it’s ranked as the world’s most valuable bank by market capitalization, as well as the largest bank in the U.S., and number five in the world ranked by assets (reported at 3.2 trillion dollars).
They employ over 189,000 employees, and have over 4,700 branches nationwide.
As the number one bank in America, Chase has a reputation for solid resources and reliability.
It offers a hefty rewards program for its credit cardholders, while its website and mobile app have high rankings across the board.
There are, however, fees associated with nearly all of their specialty accounts.
- Largest and one of the oldest banks in the world
- Solid rewards program
- Easy-to-use website and app
- Fees for most or all of their specialty accounts
2. Bank of America
Headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, BoA is a bank whose primary financial services center around commercial banking, wealth management, and investment banking.
It is one of the “big four” banks in the United States.
Pros of banking with BoA include extreme accessibility (you will never be without a bank nearby or have to pay ATM fees), and free online banking with mobile and app accessibility.
They have over 4600 branches and over 16,000 ATM machines worldwide.
They also offer a “keep the change” program which allows a client to round up all charges on their card to the nearest dollar and have the difference placed in a savings account.
Bank of America has been criticized for slow service and lack of responsiveness.
They also require minimum balances from account holders to avoid service fees on all checking and savings accounts and do not offer competitive interest rates.
- Large network of locations and ATMs
- Free Online Banking
- “Keep the change” savings program
- Some reports of slow service
- Interest rates are not very competitive
Another major bank headquartered in New York City, Citigroup has a reputation as one of the Big Four banks, deemed too large to fail.
It does, however, have a limited number of branches in the U.S., which are concentrated in major metropolitan areas.
Citibank credit cards are accepted everywhere and offer cashback on online purchases.
They also offer an array of increasing service extras as your savings account totals rise.
On the con side, you can’t just open an individual checking or savings account, but must take both as a “package”.
Citibank will also charge $10 for every transfer made to cover an overdraft, and their rates on CDs and savings are comparatively low.
- Credit cards accepted almost everywhere
- Credit cards offer cashback on online purchases
- Greater rewards with an increasing balance
- Must take checking and savings account as a package
- $10 fee on overdraft transfers
- Lower interest rates
- Lack of branch accessibility
4. Wells Fargo
Wells Fargo has headquarters in both San Francisco and Manhattan, and a long history in the United States.
In recent years it has increased service from exclusively in the west, to several locations across the country.
The bank has almost $2 trillion in assets and employs almost 260,000 people.
Wells Fargo is unique in that they offer “second chance” banking accounts for consumers who’ve suffered severe financial issues.
They also offer payments with the Zelle app and smartphone deposits among their many online services.
Like the other big banks, they only offer minimum interest and difficult-to-waive monthly service fees.
This includes fees on overdraft protection.
- “Second chance” bank accounts for those undergoing financial issues
- Zelle offers quick mobile payments and transfers
- Lower interest rates than some banks
- Difficult to avoid service fees
5. Goldman Sachs
Goldman Sachs, located in New York City, is one of the largest investment banking enterprises by revenue worldwide.
While they do not offer the vast variety of financial products offered by other online banks, the ones they do offer are highly rated.
Their savings accounts offer comparatively high yields.
By revenue, they are one of the largest investment banking companies in the world.
They have over $1.1 billion in assets and employ over 40,000 people.
As an online bank, they do not have physical locations and do not currently offer checking accounts (though this is in the works for 2021)
- Old and trusted
- High yield savings accounts
- Solid online infrastructure
- Not traditionally a consumer bank so they do not offer checking accounts at the time of writing
- No physical location
6. Morgan Stanley
Headquartered in Manhattan, New York, Morgan Stanley is a bank involved with wealth and investment management and institutional securities.
They work mainly with governments, corporations, and high-net-worth individuals.
Morgan Stanley doesn’t function as a commercial bank, but rather as an investment bank.
They are considered more dependable and conservative, with less opportunity for quick profits.
They ranked 67th on the Fortune 500 list of largest corporations in the world in 2018.
- Industry-leading wealth management
- Dependable and reliable
- Non-consumer bank - no checkings or savings accounts
- Does not focus on high-yield risk-tolerating investments
7. US Bancorp
US Bancorp is a bank holding company located in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
They provide commercial banking services along with investments, mortgages, and trust to individuals, corporations, and government entities.
It is the 5th largest bank in the United States and is ranked 117 on the Fortune 500 list.
They offer accessible and easy-to-set-up IRAs to customers, as well as online investment and trading.
US Bancorp is not quite as accessible to nationwide consumers, as they are physically located mostly in the west and midwestern states.
- Commercial banking services like mortgages, trusts, and investments
- Easy and accessible retirement accounts
- Investment and trading capabilities
- Somewhat more difficult to find and use outside of Western and Midwestern states
8. Truist Financial
A merger of BB&T and Suntrust, Truist Financial is headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina.
They operate branches in 15 states and D.C., offering consumer and commercial banking, asset management, securities brokerage, mortgage, and insurance services.
Truist is one of the largest banks in the U.S. in terms of assets and employs over 37,000 people.
Truist has a reputation for high customer satisfaction and is focused on digital innovation in banking.
They offer a wide array of account choices, with low fees.
On the negative side, Truist has a limited global presence when compared with competitors, and a high degree of local competition.
They do not yet have solid brand recognition, still operating as both BB&T and Suntrust banks.
Their interest rates are not competitive.
- High levels of customer satisfaction
- Wide array of accounts
- Low fees
- A focus on innovation
- Smaller global presence
- Less competitive interest rates
- Still operating as BB&T and Suntrust Banks
9. The Bank of New York Mellon
Another New York City offering, The Bank of New York Mellon is an investment banking service that was formed in the merger of Mellon Financial Corporation and the Bank of New York.
Like some other investment banks, it is focused on investment banking and wealth management services and does not offer commercial banking options.
New York Mellon is the largest custodian bank and asset servicing company in the world.
They have over 48.000 employees.
They have a global reach and offer a wide array of online and digital services for investing, including a new initiative targeting cryptocurrency.
Because they are purely investment banks, they do not offer consumer banking services to individuals.
- Many options for investment
- Cryptocurrency initiatives
- Non-consumer bank
10. TD Bank N.A.
TD Bank is an American bank that is a subsidiary of Toronto-Dominion bank of Canada.
Operating primarily on the East coast, it is headquartered in Cherry Hill, New Jersey.
TD Bank offers a wide variety of services including loan, deposit, investment, small business, and retirement products, making it a good choice for those who prefer to keep everything to one bank.
It is the 9th largest bank in the country by assets and employs over 26,000 people.
Account bundling leads to discounts and competitive rates, and they offer higher than average interest rates on savings and checking accounts.
However, TD bank is also fairly “fee heavy”.
Customers are unable to waive the fee by signing up for direct deposit as offered by other banks.
For those not living on the east coast, better interest rates are available at online-only banks.
ATM fees can also add up, as they are required for all transactions and TD bank ATMs aren’t as prolific as many of the other top banks.
TD Bank also once owned TD Ameritrade, but has recently been bought by Charles Schwabb.
- Higher interest rates
- Account bundling
- Higher fees
- Fewer ATMs
- Mostly an East Coast bank
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