EQ Bank and Neo Financial are both “neobanks” that are making waves in the banking industry with their innovative financial products.
This EQ Bank vs. Neo comparison covers their product offerings and what you need to know.
What is EQ Bank?
EQ Bank is a digital bank owned by Equitable Bank. It was established in 2016 and has more than $7 billion in deposits.
Its parent, Equitable Bank, was founded in 1970 and has over $61 billion in assets.
EQ Bank is popularly known for providing one of the best savings rates in Canada.
Below are the financial products it offers:
1. High-Interest Savings Account: The EQ Bank Savings Plus Account pays a high-interest rate while giving you access to some chequing account features and benefits.
- Earn high interest (up to 150x more than other banks)
- No monthly account fees
- Free unlimited transactions, including bill payments and Interac e-Transfers
- Access to joint accounts
- Eligibility for CDIC protection up to $100,000
- Free mobile cheque deposits
EQ Bank Savings Plus Account
2.50%* non-promotional interest rate
Unlimited debits and bill payments
Unlimited Interac e-Transfers
No monthly account fees
2. TFSA Savings Account: You can save and earn tax-free income using an EQ Bank TFSA. This account also earns high-interest rates, has no monthly fees, and you get unlimited withdrawals.
3. RSP Savings Account: Save for retirement using the EQ Bank RSP Account and earn a high-interest rate on every dollar in a tax-sheltered environment. You can easily set up regular automated contributions from your chequing account at another financial institution.
4. UD Dollar Account: This account offers the highest interest rate on USD deposits I could find as of this writing at 2%. The EQ Bank US Dollar Account has no monthly fees. Using the EQ Bank app, you can send money abroad via their partnership with Wise.
5. Guaranteed Investment Certificates: EQ Bank customers can invest in registered and non-registered accounts using GICs of various terms and rates.
6. Mortgage Marketplace: You can compare mortgage loan products from various lenders using EQ Bank.
Get more details about EQ Bank in this detailed review.
What is Neo Financial?
Neo Financial is a new financial technology company that offers a savings account and a credit card.
1. Neo Money Account: Offered in partnership with Concentra Bank, a Neo Money Account (formerly Neo Savings) pays 2.25% on your deposit. It has no monthly fees, and you get unlimited free transactions (bill payments and Interac e-Transfers).
Since Concentra Bank is a CDIC member institution, your combined deposit at Neo and Concentra are protected up to $100,000 per insured category.
Neo Money Account
2.25% non-promo interest rate
No monthly fees
Unlimited free transactions
Access to a no-annual-fee credit card
2. Neo Credit Card: The Neo Card is a cashback credit card that rewards you with cash back when you spend. You earn a minimum of 0.50% at non-partner retailers and up to 5% cash back at 10,000 locations.
If you carry a balance, Neo Credit Card charges 19.99% to 26.99% interest on purchases and 22.99% to 28.99% interest on cash advances.
Neo Mastercard (Standard)
Rewards: Average of 5% cash back at 10,000+ partners and a minimum of 0.50% cash back across all purchases
Welcome offer: Get 15% cash back on your first purchases, plus a $25 welcome cash bonus.
Interest rates: 19.99% – 26.99% on purchases; 24.99% – 28.99% for cash advances.
Annual fee: $0
Neo vs. EQ Bank Comparison
Here’s how they compare:
Savings Interest: EQ Bank and Neo offer some of the best savings rates. Both savings accounts have no monthly fees, and you get unlimited transactions.
In addition, EQ Bank offers savings accounts for RRSPs and TFSAs. Its savings account also supports mobile cheque deposits and EQ-to-EQ transfers.
Credit Card: Neo has a credit card, while EQ Bank hasn’t entered the credit card business.
US Dollar Account: EQ Bank’s US$ savings account offers a great way to grow your USD. Compared to 0.01% at some big banks, you earn a much higher interest rate. Neo Financial does not have a USD savings account.
Guaranteed Investment Certificates (GICs): EQ Bank clients can buy GICs for registered and non-registered accounts. Neo offers investments via its robo-advisor service.
Convenience: Neo and EQ Bank are 100% online and do not have physical branches you can walk into.
If you want to do most of your banking with a digital bank, EQ Bank offers more options, and you can deposit cheques via its app in your EQ Bank Savings Plus Account.
Referral Program: EQ Bank has a referral program that pays referrers up to $500 maximum and referees $20 when they open an account. Neo also has a referral program ($25 bonus when you get the credit card).
Fees: EQ Bank and Neo Money accounts do not have a fee.
Are they safe? Deposits at Neo Financial and EQ Bank are eligible for Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation insurance. Note that your eligible deposits at Neo and Concentra Bank are combined.
|Features||EQ Bank||Neo Financial|
|Monthly fee||None||None (optional payment for perks)|
|Savings rate||2.50% to 3.00%*||2.25%*|
|Free Interac e-Transfers||Included||Included|
|Mobile cheque deposits||Yes||No|
|Other services||USD account, GICs, global money transfer||N/A|
|Learn more||Visit EQ Bank||Visit Neo Financial|
EQ Bank vs Neo Financial: Conclusion
If you are looking to save money and invest in TFSA or RSP accounts and want some flexibility with money transfers, EQ Bank is the better choice.
You can combine your EQ Bank Savings Plus Account with a Neo Financial cash back credit card to get the best of both worlds.