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Capital One Encourages Consumers to Move Savings from Piggies to Market

June 21, 2007 at 8:02 AM EDT

Survey Says Two-Thirds of Americans Contribute Regularly to a Piggy Bank or Change Jar - Savings Could Be Increased by Switching to a High-Yield Money Market Account

MCLEAN, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 21, 2007--A new survey from Capital One Financial Corporation (NYSE: COF) Direct Banking finds that when it comes to saving, Americans are far more likely to use a piggy bank (42 percent) or change jar (65 percent) than a high-yield money market account (only 35 percent of respondents have one). Of those who use piggy banks and change jars to save, nearly half say they add money on a daily basis.

"Starting small works, but saving doesn't have to mean hiding money away in a piggy bank," says Pam Girardo, Capital One spokesperson. "High-yield money market accounts make every penny you save go farther."

Piggy Banks vs. High Yield Money Market Accounts

One thousand dollars saved in a piggy bank won't earn any interest at all, but adding just $25 each month to an initial $1,000 invested in a Capital One high-yield money market account at a rate of 4.75 percent interest would mean an additional $355 in savings in just one year.

"While this survey makes light of the fact that more Americans use a piggy bank than use a high yield money market account, it also provides a great illustration of how the 'piggy-bankers' and traditional savers could be earning so much more," says Girardo. "With no minimum balance and no fees, opening a high yield money market account is a great way to start earning more money on your savings today."

Do Americans Know They Can Earn More With Their Savings?

Americans do recognize the value of earning interest, and given an open-ended choice most say they would choose to save or invest extra money. When asked "what would you do with $1 million if someone gave it to you today?" more than one-third of Americans (36 percent) said they would "save or invest" the money - while only 15 percent say they would "spend" the money on things like cars, vacations and shopping sprees.

Yet even with the best intentions of saving, many are missing opportunities to make their savings grow. According to the survey, about half (56 percent) of Americans have savings accounts but the majority (77 percent) are earning significantly less interest and some don't even know the current interest rate on their accounts.

Girardo suggests that consumers follow these tips when searching for smart savings options:

  • Shop around - Shop around for accounts that pay the best yields.
  • Look for accounts with no minimum balance requirement - Some high yield accounts have minimum balance requirements. Others, like those from Capital One, have no balance requirements and allow consumers to earn interest immediately.
  • Ensure you have easy access to funds - Experts agree that a key benefit to high yield investments like money market accounts is the ability to draw upon the funds without penalty. Shop around and look for flexible access options such as checks, ATM cards, and ease of transfer between accounts and banks.
  • Read the fine print - Before committing to an investment option, be sure to read the fine print and terms.

    The Capital One Direct Banking High-Yield Money Market Account currently offers a 4.75 percent interest rate with no fees, no minimum balance, free checks and an ATM card. For more information about Capital One Direct Banking and product details, visit www.capitalone.com/directbanking.

    Survey Methodology

    The findings reported in this release are from a telephone survey conducted by the opinion research firm, Braun Research. The survey was sponsored by Capital One. Braun Research completed 800 interviews with adults 18 or older nationwide. The interviews were conducted between May 25 and May 31, 2007. The margin of error for this study is +/-3.46 percentage points. Interviews were monitored at random. Sampling for this study was conducted using a national probability sample of all exchanges and area codes across the United States. All interviews were conducted using a computer assisted telephone interviewing system. Statistical weights were designed from United States Census Bureau statistics.

    About Capital One

    Headquartered in McLean, Virginia, Capital One Financial Corporation (www.capitalone.com) is a financial holding company, with more than 720 locations in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Texas and Louisiana. Its principal subsidiaries, Capital One Bank, Capital One, F.S.B., Capital One Auto Finance, Inc., Capital One, N.A., and North Fork Bank offer a broad spectrum of financial products and services to consumers, small businesses and commercial clients. Capital One's subsidiaries collectively had $87.7 billion in deposits and $142.0 billion in managed loans outstanding as of March 31, 2007. Capital One, a Fortune 500 company, trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "COF" and is included in the S&P 100 index. Capital One Direct Banking offers great rates on high yield money market accounts, certificates of deposit and business money market accounts nationwide. Customers enjoy convenient and secure access to their accounts and our service representatives via online, phone or mail channels.

    CONTACT: Capital One Financial Corporation
    Pam Girardo, 703-720-2351
    Pam.girardo@capitalone.com
    SOURCE: Capital One Financial Corporation