Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Bank error NOT in your favor: Oregon banks to shun

McDonalds MONOPOLY Tournament in Vancouver (11)The reality behind the friendly face is that the banks listed are grabbing bailouts with both hands themselves while working to undermine Oregon and Oregonians. Image by Tostie14 via Flickr

Recently, your editor opened a checking account at Umpqua Bank. I had been leaning towards going with an account at Unitus Community Credit Union, but the darn Umpqua Bank pr machine was just too good and the downtown Salem location was perfect for me: near the library and the Post Office, and a chance to support a downtown Salem business, which is pretty high up on my priority list. Unitus is in some horrible bike-hostile location on Market Street near I-5 (hey, Unitus, lots of empty spaces in downtown Salem that would work for you!)

Then I found this story about the Babbits running the Oregon Bankers Association and their determination to make Oregon a rival for Mississippi in every category rather than just in higher education funding. So I called Umpqua and, lo and behold, Umpqua is a member of the OBA, which is why I'm going down there to close my account today and go to Unitus, which I should have done in the first place.

And I found a handy list of OBA members that I thought I would share, a handy guide to banks where you should never open an account, personal or business, or take a loan.

If you have a child, or want to be educated, or you care about an elder who might someday need long term care, or you have a house that needs fire protection, or if you value things like clean water and consumer protection, or if you are just plain smart enough to realize that states without abundant natural resource endowments (oil, etc.) cannot survive on a low-tax/low-services model without resembling the other backwards states using that model, you should carefully consider the many advantages of credit unions over these OBA banks, who are funding the fight to turn Oregon into a state that looks like a third world country, with a thin slice of rich people and a great mass of poor people and a hollowed out middle class. Credit unions provide small business accounts these days too, so you can move all your accounts from any of these OBA banks to a credit union and do yourself and all of us a world of good.

Albina Community Bank Allen Trust Co. Bank of America
Bank of Astoria Bank of Eastern Oregon
Bank of the Cascades Bank of the West Banner Bank
Capital Pacific Bank CenterPointe Community Bank
Century Bank Citizens Bank Clackamas County Bank
Clatsop Community Bank Columbia Community Bank
Columbia River Bank Columbia State Bank
Community Bank Cowlitz Bancorp, dba Bay Bank
Evergreen Federal Bank First Federal Frontier Bank
High Desert Bank Home Federal Bank Home Valley Bank
HomeStreet Bank KeyBank Lewis & Clark Bank
LibertyBank MBank Northwest Bank
Oregon Coast Bank Oregon Pacific Bank
Pacific Continental Bank Pacific West Bank
People's Bank of Commerce Pioneer Trust Bank
PremierWest Bank Riverview Community Bank
Siuslaw Bank South Valley Bank & Trust
Sterling Savings Bank Summit Bank The Bank of Oswego
The Commerce Bank of Oregon U.S. Bank
Umpqua Bank
Union Bank of California Union Bond & Trust Company
United States Trust Company Washington Trust Bank
Wells Fargo West Coast Bank West Coast Trust Co.
Willamette Community Bank Willamette Valley Bank
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lavachickie said...

Oregon Community Credit Union is highly recommended! We have been with them for a few years now, after switching away from what was then WAMU.

Today, right now, we are earning 3.01 interest on our Remarkable Checking. NO min balance OR maintenance fees; NO ATM FEES (use ANY ATM) and requirements that meet our style of bank usage:

- no paper statement
- log into Internet Banking once per cycle
- make one ACH or direct deposit per month and
- at least ten debit card transactions per month).

And if you don't do these, you just get a lower interest rate, no biggie.

I actually threw the savings into the checking and just made a line item entry out of the ledger so we don't "see" it there.

THREE POINT ZERO ONE PERCENT, TODAY! It was 6 percent when we joined a year ago. Compare this to other local places that tout a huge interest checking of like 0.25%. Whooptiedo.

My paycheck is direct deposited, and I use the debit card for all my gas, grocery, etc. purchases so this one is a no brainer for us.

They only have one location on South Commercial so it might not work for you, but they are a member of the credit union network that allows you to do basic banking transactions at all other member banks (which in Salem includes OSU FCU, Oregon Employees FCU, Unitus and various 7-11 kiosks). See for credit unions that are part of the Share Branch system. They are all over.

I rarely, if ever, need to visit a teller, especially considering you can withdraw/deposit for FREE using atms at banks that are part of the network. And, you can withdraw for FREE from ANY atm; they credit the charges back to you.

We refinanced a new auto loan through them, too, and it was quick, easy, with great rates.

I can't say enough good things about them. I'm just a customer, in no way affiliated with them in any other way!

Anonymous said...

There is a credit union downtown - near where the Saturday Market is -I want to say just northwest of it. Maybe Church and Union-ish? My dad has used it and likes them. Just another option.....


filbert said...

I like working with people from my community who are managing my and my neighbors' money for our mutual benefit - not for profit. A bike-friendly, downtown option is OEFCU on Winter St. between Union and D. They give me "rewards" based on my credit-card usage and let me "spend" them as cash donations to local charitable organizations. I like that.