New Valuations: Cash Is King Again

I am a sucker for sure, because I went ahead and signed up for a new Charles Schwab Brokerage One account using the front page link for $10,000 deposit for a measly $100. I could of just used this link here and put in $1,000 for a cool $100. My mistake is your datapoint. I did all of this for another $200 airline fee waiver and to convert every one of my worthless (since I can’t travel anymore) MR points for a not too shabby 1.25 cents per point. This made me reconsider the current offers and bonuses that AmEx is doing in terms of 1.25 cents per point. You can find a XLS of all the raw data here. First off if we look at MR bonuses alone, you can make a cool $4,198.50 on a $41,000 spend! You also get $900 of your airline fee waived per year.

Best Bonuses Cash Back Spend Return Free $
Biz Plat $973.50 $20,000 5% $200
Biz Gold $625.00 $5,000 13% $0
MB Pt $625.00 $3,000 21% $200
Schwab Pt $500.00 $3,000 17% $200
Personal Pt $500.00 $3,000 17% $200
Blue Cash Pre $350.00 $3,000 12% $0
Prem Reward Gold $312.50 $2,000 16% $100
Every Day Pre $187.50 $1,000 19% $0
Every Day $125.00 $1,000 13% $0
Totals $4,198.50 $41,000 10% $900

Of course you would spread that out over a few years to make sure you hit the minimum spends. Everything is calculated assuming you convert all of your points into cash using the Charles Schwab Platinum Card. I went ahead and summarized the best categories with the assumption of now getting 1.25 cents per MR point. I combined all the other cash back categories from the other cards I have or are thinking about getting.

Card Category Cash Back
CS, MB, Reg Pt Airfare 6.25%
Mer Benz Pt MB Stuff 6.25%
Blue Cash Pre Groceries 6%
Chase Amazon Amazon 5%
CostCo Anywhere Gas 4%
Biz Gold Shipping 3.75%
Biz Gold Computer 3.75%
CostCo Anywhere Restaurant 3%
CostCo Anywhere Travel 3%
Any AmEx Pt AmEx Travel 2.50%
USAA Limitless Everything 2.50%
Barclay Gold Everything 2%

You can see everything gets at least 2% I am not in a state that USAA has rolled out their Limitless card. Keep in mind that all the AmEx cards waive for military via SCRA, Chase, Citi, and Barclays will not unless you had the card before you joined. This may not be worth it if you must pay these annual fees. Please use the links above to apply for a product to support the site.



3 thoughts on “New Valuations: Cash Is King Again

  1. RWHR says:

    Question about the SCHWAB Amex Platinum. I was planning on signing up myself and my wife for that card next. I know you’ve written about having this card so heres my question.

    When you sign up for a “Schwab One® Brokerage Account” it gives you the option to do individual account or joint account. To keep things simple (have only one extra account instead of two) do you think i could do the joint account and still apply for a primary cardholder version of the schwab platinum for myself and my wife so we each still get all the yearly benefits?

    Any other pearls about signing up for this card before i make the plunge?


    • uiucderp2011 says:

      not sure about the joint account, but i made my wife get her own and we each got our own amex schwab and they waived for both, now my wife is active duty on her own. I think they treat the schwab account different from the AmEx accounts so it is unrelated. I am just not sure if the non military souse gets the annual fee waiver, not sure about datapoints on that. Best of luck!

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