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HSBC Bank Review

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We maintain strict editorial integrity in our writing and assessments. This post contains links from our advertisers, and we may receive compensation when you click these links. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone. | Advertiser Disclosure
HSBC Everyday Savings
0.01% APY

Though HSBC is a global bank, with branches in more than 60 countries, it also has a significant presence in the United States. It has more than 200 U.S. locations, spread among 10 states on the East and West Coasts, as well as Washington, D.C.

HSBC offers U.S. customers some opportunities to take advantage of its global footprint. Depositors in the bank’s Advance and Premier level checking and savings accounts have access to some special international services, such as emergency cash when traveling abroad and surcharge-free withdrawals at most of HSBC’s international ATMs.

On the other hand, those accounts have fairly high minimum balance requirements. In general, HSBC savings accounts do not offer especially high interest rates. The best returns can be found through its certificates of deposit, with certain term lengths offering rates well above competitors.

Products Offered

Product Key Details
Savings Accounts
  • Four savings account options: Everyday, Advance, Premier and Direct
  • Waivable maintenance fees
  • Interest compounds monthly
Certificates of Deposit
  • Minimum opening deposit of $1,000
  • CD terms of 6 to 24 months
  • Competitive interest rates
Checking Accounts
  • Monthly maintenance fees from $3 to $50
  • Two interest-earning accounts
  • HSBC Mastercard debit card, with free access to most HSBC ATMs worldwide
  • Optional overdraft protection program

HSBC Interest Rate Comparison

HSBC Overview

One of the largest banks in the world, HSBC has offices on five continents and in over 60 countries. Its world headquarters are in London, and it has North American headquarters located in New York City. It has branches in 10 U.S. states along the East and West Coasts, as well as Washington, D.C.

In the U.S., HSBC offers both personal and business banking services. These include nearly every type of loan imaginable, as well as insurance, investment products, retirement services and, of course, deposit accounts. HSBC has four different types of savings accounts in the U.S., four checking accounts and a number of certificates of deposits. Read on to learn more about its account offerings.

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HSBC Account Features

All HSBC deposit account holders have access to free online and mobile banking, so that they can access their money on the go. Checking accounts come with a Mastercard debit card, with access to HSBC’s global network of ATMs. A card may also be requested with savings accounts.

Not including certificates of deposit, HSBC deposit accounts generally have a monthly service fee that is waived for accounts based on either a minimum balance or direct deposits. Other possible fees include ATM fees at non-HSBC ATMs and overdraft fees.

Compare HSBC to Other Competitive Offers

HSBC Direct Savings Account

Key Features Details
Minimum Deposit $1
Access to Your Savings Account Online, mobile, ATMs and physical branches.
Security FDIC insurance up to the maximum amount allowed by law. 
Fees No monthly fee
Current Terms and Rates 2.20% APY

The bank's standout savings account, the Direct Savings account offers the bank's most competitive rate. Plus, this rate is easier to take advantage of with a $1 minimum deposit to open and no monthly fee. 

Owning this account gives you access to HSBC's 24/7 Live Chat assistance, mobile check deposit and easy transfers. You can also use the bank's Money Management Tools to compare balances, set up account alerts, watch for fees, set savings goals and more. 

HSBC Everyday Savings, Advance Savings and Premier Savings Accounts

Key Features Details
Minimum Deposit $1
Access to Your Savings Account Online, mobile, ATMs and physical branches.
Security FDIC insurance up to the maximum amount allowed by law. 
Fees
  • Everyday Savings: $5 monthly fee, waivable with $500 minimum balance
  • Advance Savings: $25 monthly fee, waivable with one of the following
    • $10,000 in combined personal deposit accounts and investment balances
    • $5,000 in combined personal deposit accounts and investment balances with at least one recurring direct deposit from a third party to an HSBC Advance checking account per month
  • Premier Savings: $50 monthly fee, waivable with $100,000 in combined personal deposit accounts and investment balances
Current Terms and Rates
  • Everyday Savings: 0.01% APY (Your balance needs to be at least $1 to earn interest)
  • Advance Savings
    • Account balances below $15,000: 0.01% APY
    • Account balances of $15,000 and over: 0.05% APY
  • Premier Savings
    • Account balances below $25,000: 0.01% APY
    • Account balances of $25,000 - $99,999.99: 0.10% APY
    • Account balances of $100,000 and over: 0.15% APY

The rates above apply to accounts opened online. Different rates may apply to accounts opened at branches.

There are three different savings account options at HSBC. Two of them, Advance Savings and Premier Savings, require customers to open a checking account in conjunction with opening the savings account.

The third, Everyday Savings, can function as a standalone savings account. There is a monthly service fee of $5 on the account, though it is waived for accounts maintaining a balance of at least $500. Free withdrawals are also limited on this account, to three per month. Beyond that, there is a fee of $0.75 per withdrawal.

If you are looking for a high return on your savings, Everyday Savings is not the best choice, as the interest rate is just 0.01% APY. This is comparable to the rates offered at other large national banks, such as Chase and Bank of America.

Advance Savings and Premier Savings offer somewhat higher rates, but only on deposits in excess of $15,000. The highest rate available is on Premier Savings accounts with a balance of over $100,000. (Note, the requirement to open a Premier Checking account is $100,000 among all HSBC accounts, including commercial and investment accounts.)

HSBC CDs (Certificates of Deposit)

Key Features Details
Minimum Deposit $1,000
Access to Your CD Account Online, mobile, ATMs and physical branches.
Security FDIC insurance up to the maximum amount allowed by law. 
Fees No monthly fees. Penalties for early withdrawals ranging from 30 to 180 days of interest.
Current Terms and Rates
  • 6 Month: 0.75% APY
  • 12 Month: 0.95% APY
  • 24 Month: 1.30% APY

The rates above apply to accounts opened online. Different rates may apply to accounts opened at branches.

A certificate of deposit trades a lower level of flexibility with your money for (in some cases) a much higher interest rate. In order to open a CD, you agree to see aside your money for a fixed term. Your interest rate is likewise fixed for the length of that term. At the end of the term you can choose to renew your CD or move your money elsewhere.

At HSBC there is a minimum deposit of $1,000 to open a CD. There is no monthly fee on your account. If you decide to withdraw your money before the end of your term, you will have to pay a penalty which is calculated based on the length of your term and your interest rate. For CDs of one to two years, the penalty is equal to 90 days of interest.

Interest rates vary significantly depending on the specific term length. Currently, the highest available rate is on the 24-month CD, at 1.3% APY. This is higher than comparable rates offered on CDs at competitors like Chase and Bank of America. Likewise, the 6-month CD rate of 0.75% beats short-term rates offered at other large national banks.

HSBC Basic and Choice Checking Accounts

Key Features Details
Minimum Deposit $0
Access to Your Checking Account Online, mobile, ATMs and physical branches.
Security FDIC insurance up to the maximum amount allowed by law. 
Fees
  • Basic Checking: $3 monthly fee
  • Choice Checking: $15 monthly fee, waivable with one of the following
    • Direct deposit
    • $1,500 in total combined personal deposit accounts and investment balances

HSBC offers four checking account options, including two interest checking accounts (see below). The non-interest checking accounts are Basic Checking and Choice Checking.

As its name suggests, Basic Checking is the simplest checking account available at HSBC. But for most customers it probably isn’t the best option: it has an automatic $3 monthly fee, which is charged regardless of your balance.

If you want to avoid that automatic fee, Choice Checking is the better option. While it does have a $15 monthly service fee, it is easily avoided either by setting up at least one direct deposit per month (from a paycheck, for example) or by maintaining a total balance of at least $1,500 among all HSBC  accounts. 

Both checking accounts include free online and mobile banking, as well as a Mastercard debit card. You can make transactions with your debit card, and access your money through ATMs. Withdrawals from HSBC ATMs are surcharge free, while HSBC charges $2.50 on other ATMs, in addition to ATM owner fees. There may be fees on HSBC ATMs outside of the U.S.

HSBC Premier and HSBC Advance Checking Accounts

Key Features Details
Minimum Deposit $0
Access to Your Checking Account Online, mobile, ATMs and physical branches.
Security FDIC insurance up to the maximum amount allowed by law. 
Fees
  • Premier Checking: $50 monthly fee, waivable with $100,000 total balance among all HSBC accounts
  • Advance Checking: $25 monthly fee, waivable with one of the following
    • $5,000 with a direct deposit each month
    • $10,000 total balance among all HSBC accounts
Current Terms and Rates 0.01% APY on both accounts

The interest checking accounts at HSBC don’t pay an especially high interest rate, at just 0.01% APY, but they do come with some other additional benefits.

The lower-level account is Advance Checking, which has a minimum balance requirement of either $10,000 among all HSBC accounts or $5,000 with at least one monthly direct deposit to your checking account.

In addition to the standard checking account features like mobile banking and ATM access, some of the benefits of Advance Checking include: no HSBC ATM fees on outside ATM, four ATM-owner rebates per month on non-HSBC ATMs (outside of New York) and rate discounts on some loans. You also have access to HSBC’s international services, such as no foreign transaction fees on your credit card and an available $10,000 in emergency cash.

Premier Checking is similar to Advance Checking, but with more of everything. For starters, the minimum balance is higher, at $100,000 total among all HSBC accounts.

If you meet that lofty requirement, you have access to international services, special mortgage discounts, an HSBC “Premier” Mastercard credit card and other benefits.

Where Can I Find HSBC?

HSBC has over 200 branches in the U.S., spread among 10 states on the East and West Coasts, as well as Washington, D.C. The states in which it has branches are: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington state. It operates in most major cities in those states.

What Can You Do Online With HSBC?

HSBC’s website and mobile app allow you to manage your money remotely. You can move money between accounts, check transaction records, make payments on loans and other bills and apply for new accounts. With the mobile app, you can also make deposits and check your spending.

We should note that mobile app has a fairly low rating on the Apple App store, with just 1.4 stars. 

How Do I Access My Money?

You can manage your money through the website or mobile app. You can also access your money with your HSBC debit or ATM card. Withdrawals are free at all HSBC ATMs in the United States, and at many HSBC ATMs internationally. Some accounts also qualify for ATM rebates as described above.

How Can I Save More Money With HSBC?

Though rates on HSBC’s savings accounts are fairly low, its certificates of deposit offer a great opportunity to increase your savings. The best rate currently available is 1.30% APY on the 24-month CD. That is well above the rates offered on similar accounts at other large banks.

What’s the Process for Opening an Account With HSBC?

You can apply for an HSBC account through its website or in person. In either case, you will need to have some information handy to complete the process. Make sure you have some kind of U.S. government ID, including a driver’s license or a green card. 

You will also need your current address, your address for the past three years, and your Social Security number. You need to be at least 18 to apply. And, of course, you need some money to put in the account — you can transfer the money from another bank or, if you are opening the account in person, with a check or cash.

What’s the Catch?

Although HSBC is an international bank, and one of the largest banks in the world, it does not have branches in many U.S. states, especially in the interior of the country. The states it does have branches in are: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Maryland, New Jersey,  New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Washington state. It also has branches in Washington, D.C.

Another potential issue for some customers will be rates offered on HSBC savings accounts. The most basic account has a rate of just 0.01%. Other accounts offer higher rates at deposit levels above $15,000.

Bottom Line

HSBC is an international bank with a significant U.S. presence: over 200 branches spread across 10 states and Washington D.C. With its global footprint, HSBC offers some special travel features to its high-end checking account customers, such as zero foreign transaction fees and available emergency cash. And while interest rates are not especially high on most deposit accounts, HSBC’s CD deals are a good opportunity for customers seeking a higher return.

Save more with these rates that beat the National Average
Unfortunately, we are currently unable to find savings account that fit your criteria. Please change your search criteria and try again.
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Unfortunately, we are currently unable to find savings account that fit your criteria. Please change your search criteria and try again.
Searching for accounts...
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