Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

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dopamineagonist
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by dopamineagonist » Fri Dec 30, 2016 12:57 am

*3!4!/5! wrote:
Cash wrote:Has anyone done a backdoor Roth with Merrill Edge? Is it easy to do online? One of my frustrations with my old Wells PMA account was faxing in the Roth conversion forms every year...

I'd also be interested in how they do conversions and recharacterizations. It looks like it might be harder than at Vanguard (so I would want to avoid needing to do any such thing at MEdge).

you have to call them and ask for the conversion once your fund settled. its not as easy as VG but not that hard.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by LifeIsGood » Fri Dec 30, 2016 8:33 am

As an aside on this thread, I called last week regarding the $1,000 bonus for $200K transfer and was told that unless I had attended a seminar in Las Vegas in Oct, the present bonus is $600.

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Earl Lemongrab
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Fri Dec 30, 2016 2:59 pm

LifeIsGood wrote:As an aside on this thread, I called last week regarding the $1,000 bonus for $200K transfer and was told that unless I had attended a seminar in Las Vegas in Oct, the present bonus is $600.

Did you give them the offer code to look up? Customer service people don't always get things right. The offer is still on their web site, with indication that it's good through 12/31.

https://www.merrilledge.com/offers/1000offer

I went ahead and filled out an application because I think I can get together a transfer. When the app started, it had a green checkmark and the words: Offer applied: $1000 Cash Offer

The application was approved and a new account opened.
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by indexfundfan » Fri Dec 30, 2016 3:10 pm

Earl Lemongrab wrote:
LifeIsGood wrote:As an aside on this thread, I called last week regarding the $1,000 bonus for $200K transfer and was told that unless I had attended a seminar in Las Vegas in Oct, the present bonus is $600.

Did you give them the offer code to look up? Customer service people don't always get things right. The offer is still on their web site, with indication that it's good through 12/31.

https://www.merrilledge.com/offers/1000offer

I went ahead and filled out an application because I think I can get together a transfer. When the app started, it had a green checkmark and the words: Offer applied: $1000 Cash Offer

The application was approved and a new account opened.

You can get two of these "enhanced" offers per social security number.
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Cash
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Cash » Fri Dec 30, 2016 6:59 pm

dopamineagonist wrote:
*3!4!/5! wrote:
Cash wrote:Has anyone done a backdoor Roth with Merrill Edge? Is it easy to do online? One of my frustrations with my old Wells PMA account was faxing in the Roth conversion forms every year...

I'd also be interested in how they do conversions and recharacterizations. It looks like it might be harder than at Vanguard (so I would want to avoid needing to do any such thing at MEdge).

you have to call them and ask for the conversion once your fund settled. its not as easy as VG but not that hard.


Thanks for the response. Calling is better than faxing, but still annoying.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by jayhawkerbeef » Sat Dec 31, 2016 8:31 am

LifeIsGood wrote:As an aside on this thread, I called last week regarding the $1,000 bonus for $200K transfer and was told that unless I had attended a seminar in Las Vegas in Oct, the present bonus is $600.


In the fine print, the 1000 requires 6 months balance kept vs the 600 is 3 months. Each option is about a 1% return for there perspective time period. So 600 isn't that bad, also you get the payout quicker.

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Ethelred
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Ethelred » Sat Dec 31, 2016 12:04 pm

Strangely, I just tried to use the code on that page, and the ME site claims that it's expired, even though the offer page says available until Dec 31st.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by rb6p » Sun Jan 01, 2017 11:19 am

Has anyone else attempted to use this card to pay estimated federal taxes using PAY1040? I am having difficultly using this particular card for larger amounts.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by *3!4!/5! » Sun Jan 01, 2017 1:44 pm

Datapoints: We got Preferred status about two days after opening checking accounts, and it was about 1.5 months after opening/funding brokerage accounts.

In other words, neither account needs to be open for 3 months. The checking accounts instantly fills one of the necessary conditions. And for the tier calculation they use the average daily balance over 3 months (so that will include some zeroes for younger accounts, e.g. a 1.5 month old account that has had a steady $50k for that time will be calculated as having "average daily balance over 3 months" of $25k).

The "average daily balance over 3 months" calculation is updated monthly.

However I'm not sure which is the correct interpretation of the seemingly ambiguous rule about what happens when you drop below a tier cutoff.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by *3!4!/5! » Fri Jan 06, 2017 10:13 pm

wxl31 wrote:Seems to happen yearly but is back again and I am finally able to take advantage of it.

Transfer taxable brokerage account assets or IRA assets to Merrill Edge for a bonus.
- transfer 20k: $100 bonus
- transfer 50k: $250 bonus (usually $150)
- transfer 100k: $500 bonus (usually $250)
- transfer 200k: $1000 bonus (usually $600)

Link: https://www.merrilledge.com/offers/1000offer
Use offer code SFMS16
Ends: October 21, 2016


What are people's datapoints as to having this bonus honored or not?

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by tj » Fri Jan 06, 2017 10:28 pm

*3!4!/5! wrote:
wxl31 wrote:Seems to happen yearly but is back again and I am finally able to take advantage of it.

Transfer taxable brokerage account assets or IRA assets to Merrill Edge for a bonus.
- transfer 20k: $100 bonus
- transfer 50k: $250 bonus (usually $150)
- transfer 100k: $500 bonus (usually $250)
- transfer 200k: $1000 bonus (usually $600)

Link: https://www.merrilledge.com/offers/1000offer
Use offer code SFMS16
Ends: October 21, 2016


What are people's datapoints as to having this bonus honored or not?


They have these offers all the time, I'd just wait til it comes back.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by *3!4!/5! » Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:07 pm

tj wrote:
*3!4!/5! wrote:
wxl31 wrote:Seems to happen yearly but is back again and I am finally able to take advantage of it.

Transfer taxable brokerage account assets or IRA assets to Merrill Edge for a bonus.
- transfer 20k: $100 bonus
- transfer 50k: $250 bonus (usually $150)
- transfer 100k: $500 bonus (usually $250)
- transfer 200k: $1000 bonus (usually $600)

Link: https://www.merrilledge.com/offers/1000offer
Use offer code SFMS16
Ends: October 21, 2016


What are people's datapoints as to having this bonus honored or not?


They have these offers all the time, I'd just wait til it comes back.


I don't understand your comment. I see it comes around about twice a year, but that's not what I'm addressing.

I'm trying to get an idea of whether this typically gets honored or not. Different offers have different levels of reliability. Sometimes with various bonus offers there are shenanigans where they try to give you less or zero.
Last edited by *3!4!/5! on Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by indexfundfan » Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:09 pm

*3!4!/5! wrote:
wxl31 wrote:Seems to happen yearly but is back again and I am finally able to take advantage of it.

Transfer taxable brokerage account assets or IRA assets to Merrill Edge for a bonus.
- transfer 20k: $100 bonus
- transfer 50k: $250 bonus (usually $150)
- transfer 100k: $500 bonus (usually $250)
- transfer 200k: $1000 bonus (usually $600)

Link: https://www.merrilledge.com/offers/1000offer
Use offer code SFMS16
Ends: October 21, 2016


What are people's datapoints as to having this bonus honored or not?

Yes, these are honored from my experience. They are credited automatically at the stipulated time without my asking.
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Earl Lemongrab
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Sat Jan 07, 2017 12:41 am

*3!4!/5! wrote:What are people's datapoints as to having this bonus honored or not?

Check the first message of the Final Definitive Thread.
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by *3!4!/5! » Sat Jan 07, 2017 12:53 am

Earl Lemongrab wrote:
*3!4!/5! wrote:What are people's datapoints as to having this bonus honored or not?

Check the first message of the Final Definitive Thread.

Have you had a situation where you didn't get the promised bonus?

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Sat Jan 07, 2017 11:21 am

*3!4!/5! wrote:
Earl Lemongrab wrote:
*3!4!/5! wrote:What are people's datapoints as to having this bonus honored or not?

Check the first message of the Final Definitive Thread.

Have you had a situation where you didn't get the promised bonus?

No, of course not. If I had, I would have mentioned that straight-up. One always checks that the account was coded correctly and that the amount transferred was adequate.
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by *3!4!/5! » Sat Jan 07, 2017 12:13 pm

LifeIsGood wrote:As an aside on this thread, I called last week regarding the $1,000 bonus for $200K transfer and was told that unless I had attended a seminar in Las Vegas in Oct, the present bonus is $600.

This. I was denied this type of bonus due to not attending a specific event in person. I may have been very unlucky, but it is being enforced in some cases. As usual, YMMV.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Sat Jan 07, 2017 12:31 pm

*3!4!/5! wrote:
LifeIsGood wrote:As an aside on this thread, I called last week regarding the $1,000 bonus for $200K transfer and was told that unless I had attended a seminar in Las Vegas in Oct, the present bonus is $600.

This. I was denied this type of bonus due to not attending a specific event in person. I may have been very unlucky, but it is being enforced in some cases. As usual, YMMV.

What do you mean, "denied"? Did you open an account with the offer code and have it rejected?
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by *3!4!/5! » Sat Jan 07, 2017 12:50 pm

Earl Lemongrab wrote:
*3!4!/5! wrote:
LifeIsGood wrote:As an aside on this thread, I called last week regarding the $1,000 bonus for $200K transfer and was told that unless I had attended a seminar in Las Vegas in Oct, the present bonus is $600.

This. I was denied this type of bonus due to not attending a specific event in person. I may have been very unlucky, but it is being enforced in some cases. As usual, YMMV.

What do you mean, "denied"? Did you open an account with the offer code and have it rejected?

Lower bonus received after 90 days, despite the fact that account opening email explicitly confirmed the higher bonus. They were emphatic that one had to have attended a certain specific event in person based on the code used (similar earlier, not identical, scenario to one quoted by "LifeIsGood"). I have decided to drop the matter and move on. I'd rather stay under the radar and quietly avail myself of future generosity.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Sat Jan 07, 2017 12:58 pm

*3!4!/5! wrote:Lower bonus received after 90 days, despite the fact that account opening email explicitly confirmed the higher bonus. They were emphatic that one had to have attended a certain specific event in person based on the code used (similar earlier, not identical, scenario to one quoted by "LifeIsGood"). I have decided to drop the matter and move on. I'd rather stay under the radar and quietly avail myself of future generosity.

Hmm. The offer code that was on the page is LVEXPO16. That does sort of imply an event. Nothing in the offer details show that. I will pursue this.
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by *3!4!/5! » Sat Jan 07, 2017 1:06 pm

Earl Lemongrab wrote:
*3!4!/5! wrote:Lower bonus received after 90 days, despite the fact that account opening email explicitly confirmed the higher bonus. They were emphatic that one had to have attended a certain specific event in person based on the code used (similar earlier, not identical, scenario to one quoted by "LifeIsGood"). I have decided to drop the matter and move on. I'd rather stay under the radar and quietly avail myself of future generosity.

Did you confirm which offer code was applied when the account was opened?

I thought it would be enough that the online application form said it was applied, and the subsequent email received stated the higher bonus. I did not realize I should have sought further confirmation beyond that. Should I? What should I have done in addition?

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by *3!4!/5! » Sat Jan 07, 2017 1:31 pm

Earl Lemongrab wrote:
*3!4!/5! wrote:Lower bonus received after 90 days, despite the fact that account opening email explicitly confirmed the higher bonus. They were emphatic that one had to have attended a certain specific event in person based on the code used (similar earlier, not identical, scenario to one quoted by "LifeIsGood"). I have decided to drop the matter and move on. I'd rather stay under the radar and quietly avail myself of future generosity.

Hmm. The offer code that was on the page is LVEXPO16. That does sort of imply an event. Nothing in the offer details show that. I will pursue this.
All the earlier codes for the higher offer (appearing about twice a year for a few years) seem to be of a similar type. So that's not a new thing.

When you "pursue this" careful not to "poke the bear". If most people manage to simply enter the code and get the bonus, I wouldn't want to bring more scrutiny. (I guess I got unlucky, but I decided to drop it and move on.)

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by indexfundfan » Sat Jan 07, 2017 2:03 pm

*3!4!/5! wrote:
Earl Lemongrab wrote:
*3!4!/5! wrote:Lower bonus received after 90 days, despite the fact that account opening email explicitly confirmed the higher bonus. They were emphatic that one had to have attended a certain specific event in person based on the code used (similar earlier, not identical, scenario to one quoted by "LifeIsGood"). I have decided to drop the matter and move on. I'd rather stay under the radar and quietly avail myself of future generosity.

Hmm. The offer code that was on the page is LVEXPO16. That does sort of imply an event. Nothing in the offer details show that. I will pursue this.
All the earlier codes for the higher offer (appearing about twice a year for a few years) seem to be of a similar type. So that's not a new thing.

When you "pursue this" careful not to "poke the bear". If most people manage to simply enter the code and get the bonus, I wouldn't want to bring more scrutiny. (I guess I got unlucky, but I decided to drop it and move on.)

It looks like they have not updated the page even though the offer has expired. From the wording, there is no mention of the requirement to attend a specific event. If it were me, I would print out the email that says you are qualified for the higher bonus and also a copy of the webpage, and ask them to review the issue.
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by triceratop » Sat Jan 07, 2017 6:47 pm

I opened my account with ME on 12/30 (thanks Earl Lemongrab for the urging). I initiated the transfer of my individual Vanguard account. The incoming funds from Vanguard will not be enough to put me over the $50k balance tier. Since the Market could fluctuate considerably over the next 8-10 days when my transfer is processing, how does ME let investors know how much the transfer counted as? I'll need to fund the rest of the $50k out of ordinary cash flow at the end of January (within the 45 days), but it is not clear how to determine the needed amount of cash. Has anyone hit this issue before?
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Ethelred » Sat Jan 07, 2017 7:08 pm

triceratop wrote:I opened my account with ME on 12/30 (thanks Earl Lemongrab for the urging). I initiated the transfer of my individual Vanguard account. The incoming funds from Vanguard will not be enough to put me over the $50k balance tier. Since the Market could fluctuate considerably over the next 8-10 days when my transfer is processing, how does ME let investors know how much the transfer counted as? I'll need to fund the rest of the $50k out of ordinary cash flow at the end of January (within the 45 days), but it is not clear how to determine the needed amount of cash. Has anyone hit this issue before?

My understanding from elsewhere (possibly the fatwallet forum?) is that for the purposes of the Merrill Edge bonus, the transfer total equals the amounts you transfer in added together. If the ETFs go up or down in value after that, it doesn't matter.

The balance does matter, though, for the average balance for calculating the Preferred Rewards level.

Just bear in mind that's not speaking from personal experience.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by triceratop » Sat Jan 07, 2017 7:16 pm

Ethelred wrote:
triceratop wrote:I opened my account with ME on 12/30 (thanks Earl Lemongrab for the urging). I initiated the transfer of my individual Vanguard account. The incoming funds from Vanguard will not be enough to put me over the $50k balance tier. Since the Market could fluctuate considerably over the next 8-10 days when my transfer is processing, how does ME let investors know how much the transfer counted as? I'll need to fund the rest of the $50k out of ordinary cash flow at the end of January (within the 45 days), but it is not clear how to determine the needed amount of cash. Has anyone hit this issue before?

My understanding from elsewhere (possibly the fatwallet forum?) is that for the purposes of the Merrill Edge bonus, the transfer total equals the amounts you transfer in added together. If the ETFs go up or down in value after that, it doesn't matter.

The balance does matter, though, for the average balance for calculating the Preferred Rewards level.

Just bear in mind that's not speaking from personal experience.


That is my understanding as well, but even if this is the case, it is not clear what date the value of the transfer is assessed. With recent swings in the market, this could be as much as $1000. Hence my concern.

I am not overly concerned about the average daily balance, because I am moving a Roth IRA over which should keep me above the level desired.
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by indexfundfan » Sat Jan 07, 2017 7:17 pm

triceratop wrote:I opened my account with ME on 12/30 (thanks Earl Lemongrab for the urging). I initiated the transfer of my individual Vanguard account. The incoming funds from Vanguard will not be enough to put me over the $50k balance tier. Since the Market could fluctuate considerably over the next 8-10 days when my transfer is processing, how does ME let investors know how much the transfer counted as? I'll need to fund the rest of the $50k out of ordinary cash flow at the end of January (within the 45 days), but it is not clear how to determine the needed amount of cash. Has anyone hit this issue before?

Add up the values of the funds on the day the transfers are credited. After you have made the transfers, send them a secure message to confirm that you have met the requirement.
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Sun Jan 08, 2017 1:00 am

triceratop wrote:That is my understanding as well, but even if this is the case, it is not clear what date the value of the transfer is assessed. With recent swings in the market, this could be as much as $1000. Hence my concern.

It's generally the closing price on the day the assets show up in your account. You can check with them to get an exact figure and see what they recorded.
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by fareastwarriors » Mon Jan 09, 2017 1:35 pm

I missed the deadline for the $1,000 at Merrill Edge. If the bonus comes again, someone please update!

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Mon Jan 09, 2017 8:48 pm

Earl Lemongrab wrote:
*3!4!/5! wrote:Lower bonus received after 90 days, despite the fact that account opening email explicitly confirmed the higher bonus. They were emphatic that one had to have attended a certain specific event in person based on the code used (similar earlier, not identical, scenario to one quoted by "LifeIsGood"). I have decided to drop the matter and move on. I'd rather stay under the radar and quietly avail myself of future generosity.

Hmm. The offer code that was on the page is LVEXPO16. That does sort of imply an event. Nothing in the offer details show that. I will pursue this.

I sent a secure message into Merrill asking about the account I opened with the offer code a few days before the endo fo the year. Received this response today:

Thank you for contacting Merrill Edge.

I reviewed your CMA ending in -XXXX, and the account has been approved for the offer. In order to qualify for the promotional credit, you will need to fund your new account with at least $20,000 in outside assets within 45 days of the account opening date. For the purposes of this offer, outside assets are defined as those not currently held by Bank of America or Merrill Lynch. The deposited funds must then be held in your new account for 180 days from the date the deposit is made. The promotional credit is a one-time deposit made into your account within two weeks after meeting qualifying criteria.

The following are the funding requirements:

Funding Requirement Promotional Credit
$20,000 $100
$50,000 $250
$100,000 $500
$200,000 $1000

You can confirm receipt of the promotional credit at Accounts > Activity. If the timeframe provided above has elapsed and the promotional credit has not been applied, please contact us at 1.877.653.4732 for a prompt resolution.
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by triceratop » Wed Jan 11, 2017 7:16 pm

Weird: I started the transfers for CMA and rIRA the other day, still nothing on the ME side. But on the VG side all my fractional shares have been liquidated to cash (I definitely did not ask for this to happen). Probably nothing, and I bet it'll disappear in a few days. But maybe others will see that this is normal.
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Thu Jan 12, 2017 10:13 am

triceratop wrote:Weird: I started the transfers for CMA and rIRA the other day, still nothing on the ME side. But on the VG side all my fractional shares have been liquidated to cash (I definitely did not ask for this to happen). Probably nothing, and I bet it'll disappear in a few days. But maybe others will see that this is normal.

Generally, if you transfer all the whole shares of ETFs then the fractionals will be liquidated.
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by MisterBill » Sun Jan 15, 2017 11:16 pm

I signed up for an account a month ago with the $1000 bonus. I finally got my Capital One account transferred over last week (Cap One sat on it for 2 weeks before starting to process it), sadly missing the monthly cut-off for Preferred Rewards balances, so it will be April before I get to the top level. I got them to refund the $75 closeout fee that Capital One charged me and the rep I've been working with allowed me to just send a snapshot showing my latest activity rather than waiting until the end of the month for a statement. The credit hit my account a couple of days later. So if anyone else transferred an account and got charged for it, be sure to ask them to cover the fee.

I also transferred in a couple of stocks from Fidelity to get over $200k. That was much simpler (and faster). I didn't even have to print and sign a form like I did with Capital One (who I guess doesn't participate in ACAT). I just submitted the whole thing online.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by triceratop » Mon Jan 16, 2017 1:32 pm

MisterBill wrote:I signed up for an account a month ago with the $1000 bonus. I finally got my Capital One account transferred over last week (Cap One sat on it for 2 weeks before starting to process it), sadly missing the monthly cut-off for Preferred Rewards balances, so it will be April before I get to the top level. I got them to refund the $75 closeout fee that Capital One charged me and the rep I've been working with allowed me to just send a snapshot showing my latest activity rather than waiting until the end of the month for a statement. The credit hit my account a couple of days later. So if anyone else transferred an account and got charged for it, be sure to ask them to cover the fee.

I also transferred in a couple of stocks from Fidelity to get over $200k. That was much simpler (and faster). I didn't even have to print and sign a form like I did with Capital One (who I guess doesn't participate in ACAT). I just submitted the whole thing online.


1) You get a certain number of free trades for the first 90 days, so this should help tide you over with additional purchases until the preferred rewards kicks in.

2) What's more, and I verified this with a BoA rep this weekend, you can earn points on the Travel/Cash Rewards and as long as you are preferred rewards eligible when you redeem the points you will receive the full bonus. That is, there is no need to delay use of the rewards cards until one reaches Platinum/Platinum Honors status.
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by *3!4!/5! » Mon Jan 16, 2017 1:42 pm

triceratop wrote:2) What's more, and I verified this with a BoA rep this weekend, you can earn points on the Travel/Cash Rewards and as long as you are preferred rewards eligible when you redeem the points you will receive the full bonus. That is, there is no need to delay use of the rewards cards until one reaches Platinum/Platinum Honors status.


Clarification:
Travel Rewards uses status at time of purchase.
Cash Rewards uses status at time of redemption.

Moreover
Travel Rewards signup bonus is not boosted by Preferred Rewards bonus.
Cash Rewards signup bonus is boosted by Preferred Rewards bonus (at time of redemption).

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by MisterBill » Mon Jan 16, 2017 2:19 pm

*3!4!/5! wrote:Clarification:
Travel Rewards uses status at time of purchase.
Cash Rewards uses status at time of redemption.

Moreover
Travel Rewards signup bonus is not boosted by Preferred Rewards bonus.
Cash Rewards signup bonus is boosted by Preferred Rewards bonus (at time of redemption).

Yes, that is what I've read. So I can get my 3.5% for groceries and 5.25% for gas immediately, except I'm still getting 5% for both on my Sallie Mae card, and 5% on gas with both Discover and Chase this quarter (both of which are worth more when redeeming), so no real incentive to start using it for those just yet.

My real interest is using the Travel Rewards card to get the 2.625%. Now, I should qualify at Platinum next month (if I understand how things work, $200k/3 > $50k) so I will get the 50% bonus, which makes the travel card worth 2.25%, still better than my current Fidelity card. But I won't get to the maximum level until March. I was actually thinking it would be April, but I guess $200*2/3 is still > $100k. Or maybe I'm confused.

I already have both cards so the signup bonus doesn't effect me. How about the AAA signup bonus? Boosted or not? I'm debating signing up for a card.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by *3!4!/5! » Mon Jan 16, 2017 3:09 pm

I'm not going to worry too much about when the BoA TR higher cashback tiers kick in. My moderate spending over a few months makes it a small issue.

As to AAA card, it is no longer listed on the BoA website. I wonder about its status now.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by MisterBill » Mon Jan 16, 2017 4:49 pm

*3!4!/5! wrote:I'm not going to worry too much about when the BoA TR higher cashback tiers kick in. My moderate spending over a few months makes it a small issue.

As to AAA card, it is no longer listed on the BoA website. I wonder about its status now.

Was it ever listed there? I found a link on the AAA site and was able to get the application page. I'm still debating about applying for it since Chase's 5/24 rule (and my inability to get the 100k UR points) has me rethinking casual card applications. Kind of like Elaine's "sponge-worthy" issue on Seinfeld for those who can remember that far back (although it's still shown regularly in syndication).

I have debated calling to see if I can convert one of my Cash Rewards cards to AAA, but my problem is that presumably it would have to be a Visa, and the Visa has ~$20 of rewards on it which I'd probably lose in a conversion (need $25 to cash out). So I need to start using it again, then see if I can convert it. And that's not going to happen until my Sallie Mae card goes away.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by *3!4!/5! » Mon Jan 16, 2017 5:22 pm

Yes the AAA card was definitely listed on the BoA page until recently, and listed as a Preferred Rewards card. Now it's not listed. (Also the signup bonus is now $50 for $500 spend instead of $100 for $250 spend though that's a minor issue.)

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by MisterBill » Sun Feb 05, 2017 11:09 pm

So I finally became eligible to sign up for Preferred Rewards yesterday. I had checked on Friday and was not, and even called their "customer service" where a rep who clearly did not know much told me that I would have to wait until I had my Merrill Edge account open for 3 months, even though I'd had BofA checking/savings accounts open for a longer time. I checked again after receiving email that my January ME statement was available, and fortunately she was wrong since the website showed the logo on my home page and told me I could sign up. I was enrolled at the Platinum level based on my January ME balances. When they get my February balance, I'll be at the top level.

I swapped my Fidelity Visa for my Travel Rewards Visa in my wallet today, although I need to spend another $1k on the Fidelity card to get to $50 rewards and cash out. My GEICO payment this month will cover that.

Still undecided on applying for the AAA card. 3.75% on travel would be nice. It would also be nice if they had a card with a decent rate on dining (vs the normal 2.625%).

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by *3!4!/5! » Sun Feb 05, 2017 11:50 pm

MisterBill wrote:So I finally became eligible to sign up for Preferred Rewards yesterday. I had checked on Friday and was not, and even called their "customer service" where a rep who clearly did not know much told me that I would have to wait until I had my Merrill Edge account open for 3 months, even though I'd had BofA checking/savings accounts open for a longer time. I checked again after receiving email that my January ME statement was available, and fortunately she was wrong since the website showed the logo on my home page and told me I could sign up. I was enrolled at the Platinum level based on my January ME balances. When they get my February balance, I'll be at the top level.

I swapped my Fidelity Visa for my Travel Rewards Visa in my wallet today, although I need to spend another $1k on the Fidelity card to get to $50 rewards and cash out. My GEICO payment this month will cover that.

Still undecided on applying for the AAA card. 3.75% on travel would be nice. It would also be nice if they had a card with a decent rate on dining (vs the normal 2.625%).


They update the calculation once a month. You might have to wait for the next monthly update. Also earlier I said
viewtopic.php?p=3172906#p3172906
*3!4!/5! wrote:Datapoints: We got Preferred status about two days after opening checking accounts, and it was about 1.5 months after opening/funding brokerage accounts.

In other words, neither account needs to be open for 3 months. The checking accounts instantly fills one of the necessary conditions. And for the tier calculation they use the average daily balance over 3 months (so that will include some zeroes for younger accounts, e.g. a 1.5 month old account that has had a steady $50k for that time will be calculated as having "average daily balance over 3 months" of $25k).

The "average daily balance over 3 months" calculation is updated monthly.

However I'm not sure which is the correct interpretation of the seemingly ambiguous rule about what happens when you drop below a tier cutoff.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by MisterBill » Mon Feb 06, 2017 12:39 am

*3!4!/5! wrote:They update the calculation once a month. You might have to wait for the next monthly update. Also earlier I said
viewtopic.php?p=3172906#p3172906
*3!4!/5! wrote:Datapoints: We got Preferred status about two days after opening checking accounts, and it was about 1.5 months after opening/funding brokerage accounts.

In other words, neither account needs to be open for 3 months. The checking accounts instantly fills one of the necessary conditions. And for the tier calculation they use the average daily balance over 3 months (so that will include some zeroes for younger accounts, e.g. a 1.5 month old account that has had a steady $50k for that time will be calculated as having "average daily balance over 3 months" of $25k).

The "average daily balance over 3 months" calculation is updated monthly.

However I'm not sure which is the correct interpretation of the seemingly ambiguous rule about what happens when you drop below a tier cutoff.

Yes, I meant when they get my February statement balance (issued in March).

And yes, it's based on average daily balance, since they claimed my 3 month average was 59k when I would have expected it to be higher if it was just based on the statement total. Not a big deal, since I got the same level I would have if it had been based on the statement, and I'll qualify for the top level next month with either method.

Oh yeah, and they sent me an email asking about my experience with the phone call on Friday and I was happy to tell them that the rep gave me incorrect information.
Last edited by MisterBill on Mon Feb 06, 2017 9:43 am, edited 4 times in total.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by *3!4!/5! » Mon Feb 06, 2017 1:27 am

I just checked and my "current qualifying Platinum balance" has changed. I think it last happened about a month ago. They say:

"How is this number calculated?
This number reflects the 3-month average combined balance in your eligible Bank of America deposit and/or Merrill Edge and Merrill Lynch investment accounts. It's calculated based on your average daily balance for a 3-calendar-month period. Your program balance is updated each calendar month and determines your Preferred Rewards eligibility and benefits."

My number appears to be "average daily balance for a 3-calendar-month period" for exactly the days in Nov-Dec-Jan, i.e. actual calendar months (and not, say, the days in Nov5-Feb5). But it looks like the updated number doesn't "post" until 5 or 6 days after the end of the month.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Longtermgrowth » Tue Feb 07, 2017 2:05 am

Am I the only one about harassed to death by phone calls? Besides the initial calls to set everything up, I got quite a few calls from the same number not leaving messages. That number turned out to be an "investment consultant" that left a voicemail eventually. Then another left a voicemail AND emailed expressing urgency that they speak with me. I call back and it's essentially a survey on why I chose them, asking prying questions about other assets, etc. They had already asked some of the same questions in an email survey.

Anyone get a "courtesy call" a while after opening credit card? Had another unknown number constantly calling but not leaving a message, so I answered it one day and it's BoA reading a script of the basic card features, asking what I liked about it that made me pick it, etc :annoyed

They are digging for too much information and spamming phones way too much, even if doing a fraction of this to everyone else, in my opinion. After all of the above, I'm still getting calls from numbers that look to be coming from them.

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Tue Feb 07, 2017 10:53 am

Short answer, no I haven't. I had a Merrill rep contact me at first. I told him I'm a DIY investor, so he gave me his email to contact if I need anything. Other than that, no calls that I'm aware of. Of course, if people don't leave messages I don't know who they were.

If you think it's a problem, send a secure message requesting no more contact.
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by JDCarpenter » Tue Feb 07, 2017 1:23 pm

I'm with lemongrab here. I don't recall ever getting any contact from BoA/MLEdge. I called them near the beginning to find out what it meant when I accidentally/unknowingly ended up in the program in the midst of almost lending son money for a condo.

If they ever contacted me in the past 4 years, it was quite transient. (FWIW, I have less than 200K with them, plus credit card and HELOC)
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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by arsenalfan » Tue Feb 07, 2017 1:28 pm

+1 for no calls or emails.
Transferred aftertax positions (muni bonds and vanguard ETFs), got the 1k bonus 6 months later in the account.
I have called BoA for checking account and visa questions - quite happy with level of service (get a live person right away, who knows what s/he is talking about).

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by Easy Rhino » Tue Feb 07, 2017 3:00 pm

My preferred balances seemed to update after my checking account statement (which was around the 6th of the month)

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by fareastwarriors » Tue Feb 07, 2017 4:09 pm

No calls but I do get occasional mailings from them asking me to join their Preferred Rewards. I been in their Preferred Rewards program more than a year already!!!

:oops:

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Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Post by tj » Wed Feb 08, 2017 8:09 pm

I did receive numerous calls and voice mails when I originally set it up. He eventually emailed me.I told him to cnotact me through email only.

I also received some voice mails from Etrade, Ameritrade and Scottrade. I ignored them and they did not call again.

If you would prefer to correspond via email, we can do that also. Just so you know what I do, I am a full licensed Investment Consultant with Merrill Edge. I help people with the onboarding process and ensuring that we are answering any questions about the platform, as well as asking a few of our own to make sure we are getting you set up properly. You mentioned you set up this account to do the transfer, and that you signed up for the higher bonus offer. Was the bonus offer the main reason you were moving the accounts over to Merrill Edge?

Regards,


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