DepositAccounts.com’s Ken the Bank Deals Guy Shares his Year-End Thoughts

Ken from DepositAccounts.com - "I started using Mint.com in 2010 to help me keep track of my financial accounts. I've found it a big time saver."

Here at the Ally Bank Straight Talk Blog, we believe one of the most important keys to financial success is staying well-informed. That’s why we think the website Deposit Accounts is so interesting. It calls itself a “the first major bank account comparison site that’s truly unbiased,” and it lives up to that lofty description. Whether you’re hunting for the best checking account or looking to compare IRA or CD rates, Deposit Accounts is a good bet for in-depth, honest information.

We contacted founder and editor of the Deposit Accounts Blog Ken the Bank Deals Guy to get his take on 2010. Ken is not only a great contributor to the personal finance blogosphere, but he’s also happens to be an Ally Bank customer. Here’s what he had to say.

What financial tool or tip did you learn in 2010 that you really loved?

I started using Mint.com in 2010 to help me keep track of my financial accounts. I’ve found it a big time saver.

How did your blog grow in the past year?

2010 was a transformative year for the blog. Early in the year it found a new home at DepositAccounts.com. The new site has allowed me to focus more on my blog content. Better blog content and new features of the site have helped the blog attract new readers.

What’s your financial resolution for 2011?

Get my financial life better organized.

Give us three words that describe what you think is the ideal bank.

No unpleasant surprises

What financial trends do you hope to see in the coming year?

I hope we’ll see better returns for conservative investors and savers. Many of my readers depend on interest from their bank accounts. This record low interest rate environment has been difficult for them.

Thanks a lot, Ken!

And have you been using Mint.com to keep your financial life organized? Do you rely on the interest generated by your bank accounts? Let us know!

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41 Comments

  1. 1
    Robert Prather

    I’ve been using Mint.com since about 2009 and I love it. One of the very few improvements I can think of for Ally Bank would be the possibility of showing pending transactions online (and thus they would show up on Mint.com). This would take some of the mystery out of things…

    I love Mint and Ally. Together they make my life so much easier!

  2. 2
    Kyle

    I love mint.com too, but I hate the idea of storing my bank password in someone’s database. Being in the IT industry myself, I know no-one’s security is perfect, and all it would take is a small programming error that would expose the unencrypted database connection. Is there a better way that Ally could use to integrate with Mint?

    I’m thinking something like a developer API with a Public/Private Key authentication. That is very secure, is not a password, and allows you to revoke or grant permissions easily.

  3. 3
    Harold

    Is there any possibility of Ally Bank providing an OFX interface so that Ally Bank transactions can be downloaded by financial management software? It seems like the smart thing to do for a company that prides itself on being current with technology!

    • 4
      Ally

      It’s certainly something that we’ve heard before, Harold. We’ll pass the feedback on to our team and make sure to discuss this in the near future.

      • 5
        Darren

        You’ve been hearing pleas for OFX now for 3+ years. Where are you on implementing it? Can you give us an update? I’m a new Ally customer and am somewhat surprised that you don’t have this active already. What gives?

      • 6
        Phillip

        Any update on OFX support? Please!!!??? I selected Ally bank because it is an online-only bank, which I assumed means since they are completely focused on technology they would be ahead of other banks in that area. I guess I was wrong :(

  4. 9
    Jolita

    I agree completely with Robert. What I miss the most at Ally is seeing the pending transactions (in savings accounts specifically in my case). I would find it extremely useful on the transaction page, and would consider Ally to be feature-complete!

    That is, until I can think of something else :)

    • 10
      Ally

      Thanks for your comment, Jolita! We’ll pass this on to the team over here. We’re glad that you’re also enjoying our integration with Mint; it’s pretty great.

  5. 11
    Jason Garber

    I too would like to see an OFX Direct Download interface so it can be automatically pulled into financial software.

    I’m going back to desktop financial software after Mint royally screwed up my accounts last year. I was relying on it for tax time, but now have to piece together transaction records from various places and try to figure out how I would have categorized them.

    Go look on Min’ts support forum. There are 10 angry Mint.com users for every one satisfied one.

    • 12
      Ally

      Thanks for the response, Jason, and very interesting insight there. We’ll definitely pass along the idea to our team over here. Appreciate the feedback!

  6. 13
    Travis

    I would like to strongly echo Jason Garber’s request for an OFX Direct Download. I’ve used Mint in the past, but prefer my own offline, thick-client budgeting tool. These tools require direct access to be used optimally.

  7. 14
    Aaron

    +1 for ofx. A technologically advanced company is incomplete without it. This is the only factor keeping me from bringing my spending accounts to Ally.

  8. 16
    Nathan

    The direct download issue is the only thing keeping me from moving all my accounts to Ally, as well. I’ve been with ING Direct for almost 10 years, but I am very impressed with what Ally has to offer. The prospect of losing direct download just outweighs several other factors.

    I hope to be pleasantly surprised, one of these days…

  9. 18
    Andrew

    I too would like to request OFX Direct Download. I have numerous accounts with ING that I keep around only because of the OFX download. If Ally added this function – I would readily close the ING accounts and move all my money over!

  10. 19
    Laki

    OFX Direct Download is the only missing feature for Ally, i love everything at Ally, except for the fact that there is no direct download via OFX interface. This is the only reason why i still have accounts at other banks. Can you please please please add direct OFX donwload?

  11. 20
    Benjamin S

    I would absolutly love to see this, I use gnucash an opensource thick client that offers OFX connect to download the information into its interface but Ally is not listed in the database so it wont work But I would LOVE to see it working, thank you

  12. 23
    Maxim Weinstein

    Another vote for OFX connect. I use MoneyDance (a competitor to Quicken), and my current accounts at other banks make it easy to download transactions via OFX. This is the one thing that’s making me hesitate about switching to Ally.

  13. 36
    Jim

    It’s getting to the point where Ally is the only banking institution I use without OFX. Which means I have to manually cut and paste Ally statements into my financial software. Which means 2 extra hours of work for me each month. So sadly, as much as I love Ally otherwise, I might have to give up on Ally soon, and stop recommending it if OFX is not implemented.

    Ally, could you at least give us a timeline?

  14. 37
    Benjamin

    I’ve been an Ally customer for around two years now, and I would have thought that OFX support would exist by now. Ally is the only Bank I use that doesn’t support OFX, which makes it difficult to use since it doesn’t work openly with many of the accounting software out there. OFX is the only banking standard that is freely accessible, making it the only format currently that is used broadly. What alternatives does Ally offer? If none, why do you not support OFX.

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