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Citibank minimum balance now Rs.2 lakh per month

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Citibank minimum balance to be Rs. 2 lakh per month? Wow.

In early January this year, I received a mail from Citibank that w.e.f 01-Mar-13, they were converting my Suvidha savings account to a ‘Citibanking‘ account. This was supposed to be superior to the Suvidha account and would also entail keeping a minimum average monthly balance of Rs.2 lakhs. For longstanding customers like yours truly, the balance was to be maintained at Rs.1 lakh per month.

I’ve been banking with Citibank for almost a decade now and never had any problems or issues with them. Over the past few years, this account has moved from being a zero balance salary account to requiring Rs.5,000 p.m, then Rs.10,000 p.m and till now, Rs.25,000 p.m, which was also on the higher side, but ok. However, my grouse is that the “benefits” of a Citibanking account as outlined by them just don’t justify keeping an average balance of even Rs.1 lakh per month, somewhat similar to ICICI Bank hiking their minimum balance requirements without any tangible benefits of doing so.

Citibank minimum balance

Similar facilities and benefits are provided by other banks for a minimum balance of Rs.5,000 to Rs.10,000 per month. Of course, as their mail says, this is a relationship value, not just the savings account amount, so even investments in mutual funds and stocks, insurance, home loans (all with Citibank) are covered in this.

While that makes it seem better, I personally don’t see the point in changing my investment holding patterns from elsewhere or opening Fixed Deposits with Citibank (with lower interest than others) just to maintain this account. Citibank is also sending a message loud and clear that they want only account holders from the premium segment, which is perfectly fine.

Anyway, to each his/her own. I’ve enjoyed banking with Citibank, but as this kicks in from tomorrow, I’m closing my account.

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