FatWallet's Finance Forum is truly a source of sweet financial product deals. In the last several months, I had been picking up ideas like no-string-attached free Experian credit report, the marvelous MBNA Cashback card that gives 10% cashback for grocery and dining bills, and, most recently, the TrueEarnings cobranded card from Amex and Costco. Today, I got another hint from the Forum: a $100 bonus from Fidelity for eBay customers.
The deal is simple. As described in the Fidelity website, Fidelity will deposit $100 into your account when you open a brokerage account and deposit at least $10,000. In additon, eBay PowerSellers will receive Fidelity gold level pricing (like $8 per trade). Also, based on the fine prints, the deal apparently does not require customers to keep this ten grand in Fidelity account for a predefined number of days. What's more, this $100 bonus is available to existing Fidelity customers as well as long as they deposit $10,000 to an existing account.
As you may know, I am already a Fidelity customer as Fidelity is the designated broker for our 401(k) and ESPP accounts. Over the past several years, I found Fidelity's service first-class, and fee schedule more than reasonable (I am also entitled to gold level pricing). Today, I signed up for the deal and give Fidelity a call. The call confirmed that as long as I deposit $10,000, I can get $100 back in no time. Even though it means I may lose seveal days of interest, this is still a wonderful deal that adds $90 to my net worth with less than an hour's work.
One thing that bothers me is why Fidelity chooses eBay as a marketing partner. It is possible that eBay users may be more Internet-minded and thus require less maintenance, but I doubt an average eBay user has a higher net worth than the readers of a personal finance magazine. Anyway, $100 is not a high price for a discount broker to pay for new accounts, and I am satisfied with the fact that Fidelity is willing to tunnel some pocket money to some existing customers who happen to be eBay users too.