Is CIT Bank a Scam?

If you’re considering CIT Bank for its high-yielding online savings account, you may have questions about the safety and legitimacy of this online-only financial institution. We’ve done some digging on this one, and we have all the answers you need.


FDIC Insurance

CIT Bank, N.A. has been a member of the FDIC since 2009. Its membership number is 58978. It is headquartered in Pasadena, California, but has no branch locations as it is an Internet-only bank.


Affiliations

CIT Bank is part of CIT Group, a financial holding company that has been in business since 1908. CIT Bank also operates OneWest Bank. OneWest has a focus on southern California, with several branch locations and ATM’s in the area.


Size

CIT Group has been ranked by Fortune magazine as one of the top 1,000 companies in the United States. Ranked as the 713th largest company, CIT Group most recently earned $3.3 billion in revenue. The Federal Reserve ranks CIT Bank in the top 50 largest U.S. banks.


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History

Founded in 1908 in St. Louis, the bank renamed itself the Commercial Investment Trust in 1915 when it moved to New York. In 1997, CIT went public with an IPO that raised almost a billion dollars.

During the mortgage crisis of 2009, CIT came close to bankruptcy but received a $3 billion bailout from Uncle Sam. The financial conglomerate eventually filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.


Awards

CIT Bank has won numerous awards in the past few years from several publications, including American Banker, The Motley Fool, Bankrate, and NerdWallet.


Better Business Bureau

CIT Group has a profile at the Better Business Bureau. Currently, the bank holding company has a rating of C-. The highest rating is A+. The reason CIT Group has a low rating is that it hasn’t responded to seven complaints that have been filed against it at BBB. In the past 3 years, 87 complaints have been closed. And 31 complaints have been closed in the past 12 months.

Some of the areas where customers complained include advertising, sales, billing, and collections. The most common complaint was with a product or service.

There are 13 reviews of CIT Group on its BBB profile. Most of these are 1-star reviews. The highest possible rating is 5 stars. In all probability, upset customers come to the bank’s BBB profile to leave a bad review—and a small number of bad reviews do not necessarily present an accurate representation of the bank’s overall performance.

CIT Group is not BBB accredited. A company must apply for BBB accreditation, and not all businesses do so.


Our Judgment

CIT Bank definitely is not a scam. It is a legitimate financial institution that has been in business for over a century. While it does not have the best performance record, it does appear to be transparent in its operations. Coupled with FDIC insurance, consumers should feel confident opening an account with the company.


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