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What Are the Different Types of Retail Banking Services?

Many retail banks offer investment services.
People can access their retail bank accounts at drive-thrus.
Savings accounts are offered by retail banks.
Checking accounts are one of the most common banking services.
Debit cards are often offered by retail banks.
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  • Written By: Helen Akers
  • Edited By: Jessica Seminara
  • Last Modified Date: 11 November 2014
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Retail banking services encompass a variety of account types. Besides the standard savings and checking accounts, retail banks offer credit cards, investment services, certificates of deposit and retirement accounts. These banks also offer a full range of loan accounts, including mortgages, car loans, home equity loans, personal loans, business loans and private student loans.

When most people think of traditional retail banking services, a savings or checking account comes to mind. Both accounts are deposit accounts that individuals are free to make deposits to as little or as much as they would like. Some retail banks will have stipulations regarding the minimum opening deposit amounts as well as an average monthly minimum that needs to be maintained in order to avoid fees. Checking accounts may or may not include interest payments, while savings accounts typically do. Debit cards may be offered in conjunction with these types of accounts to make the withdrawal of available funds more convenient.

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Additional savings options are usually a part of the portfolio of retail banking services. Interest rates on certificates of deposit are typically higher than that of a regular savings account. The main difference is that a certain amount of money needs to be deposited for a longer time frame and cannot be withdrawn until the end of the period. Individual retirement accounts can be set up through a retail bank and work similarly to an employer's retirement plan. A maximum amount of funds can be contributed each year and cannot be withdrawn until a certain age without receiving a penalty.

Investment services may also be offered by a retail bank. They are usually provided under a partnership with investment brokerage firms. Bank customers who maintain checking accounts may be able to transfer a certain amount of available funds towards the purchase of stocks, bonds and mutual funds. These types of accounts are usually not insured in the event of bank failure, while other savings accounts such as certificates of deposit are.

Credit and loan accounts are another part of retail banking services. Banks may offer a credit card to customers. The credit cards work the same as other cards on the market, but could possibly be tied to customers' checking accounts for withdrawal protection if they so choose. Retail banking services also generally offer a variety of loans, including mortgages for new purchases and refinances. Car loans for new and used vehicle purchases, personal and business lines of credit, and student loans might all be available through a retail bank.

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Mykol
Post 4

I have a small business so like to use a bank that offers personal and commercial banking services. This makes it so much more convenient to take care of everything in one place.

A bank that has several metro locations is also something that is important to me. I am all over the place and like the option of having several locations to choose from.

SarahSon
Post 3

I worked in the investment department of a large bank. This was very convenient for many people who liked to have an investment professional to consult. Even though we were connected with the bank, the products were offered were not FDIC insured.

We always had to remind people of this fact since they were investing in products that did not have a guaranteed rate of return. If they wanted something like this, they could meet with a personal banker and buy a certificate of deposit.

We sold more mutual funds and annuity products to our customers than anything else, but they also had the option of buying stocks and bonds if they wanted to. I think most people like banking where they have a lot of financial services available to them.

LisaLou
Post 2

Most every bank offers internet banking services, but one of the things I look for when I am shopping for a bank is if they offer a free checking account or not. Many banks will say they do, but when you read the fine print, there are a lot of restrictions.

I like a very simple checking account that doesn't require a minimum balance and is free. These are not all that easy to find anymore. You usually have to go to your smaller local banks and stay away from the big national banks if you want this kind of checking account.

andee
Post 1

Most banks anymore are almost like one stop shopping for a lot of your financial needs. At my current bank location not only can I do my general banking, but also take advantage of a lot of other services.

We have our mortgage loan and our car and home insurance through our local bank. They also offer investment products and even have a travel club where members go on trips together. I also take advantage of their online banking services.

We have been with the same bank for 20 years and have established a strong relationship with them. Some might say it isn't good to have everything in one place, but I like walking into a bank where I personally know the employees and they know me and my history.

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