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Sequin
3.5
★★★★★
Finder score
Fee
$13 per month
APY
3.56%
Minimum deposit to open
$0

Our verdict

A high-interest and cashback checking account made for women.

Sequin is a fintech company with banking services through Thread Bank. Sequin is great for anyone who wants a high-interest checking account, wants to earn rewards, and those who want to support women-founded and focused businesses. Earn up to 3.56% APY on your checking balance with the membership, and get up to 6% cashback at places like drugstores, gym memberships and cosmetic stores like Ulta and Sephora. But this account isn’t free. You’ll either pay $13 per month for the membership to get the highest APY on checking, or $12 per month (waivable) to get 1.01% APY on checking and 6% cashback. There isn’t much to complain about with Sequin, but just know you’ll need to spend at least $500 per month to earn that 6% cashback rate and the $12 plan requires a $25 opening deposit.

Best for: Those who want a high-interest, rewards checking and support women-centered companies.

Pros

  • High 3.56% to 1.01% APY on balance
  • Up to 6% in cashback rewards
  • No ATM or overdraft fees
  • Financial workshops
  • Up to four ATM reimbursements per month
  • Waivable fee on Sequin Rewards Card plan

Cons

  • No physical branches
  • Can't waive Sequin High-Interest Checking Account monthly fee

In this guide

  • Our verdict
  • Your reviews
  • Ask a question

Who is Sequin best for?

Sequin is founded by women and is heavily focused on supporting women in their financial goals and education. Vrinda Gupta, Sequin’s CEO, previously worked at Visa where she developed credit cards. After being rejected for the very card she helped develop, she founded Sequin to address “gender inequality in credit” and “fight the pink tax.” But anyone can sign up, as Sequin states that all genders are welcome.

Along with the profound mission statement, Sequin’s interest-bearing checking account is a solid product. There are no requirements to earn the high 3.56% APY, which is over 50 times higher than the national average of 0.08%(1) for interest checking. That rate is also extremely competitive among other high-yield checking accounts. The rewards debit card also earns cashback on various purchases, including gym memberships, salons and drugstore purchases.

Sequin plans and cost

Sequin has two different options for the Sequin Rewards Visa Debit Card plan.

PlanCostPerks
Sequin Rewards Card$12 per month (waivable), $25 minimum opening deposit
  • Up to 1.01% APY on checking balance
  • Up to 6% cashback on select purchases
  • No overdraft fees
  • Sequin University
  • Sequin community forum
Sequin High-Interest Checking Account + Sequin Rewards Card + Membership$13 per month, $0 opening depositEverything with other plan, plus:
  • 3.56% APY on checking balance
  • Up to $20 in ATM reimbursements
  • Personal finance workshops
  • Credit-building tools

What we like about Sequin

Sequin is a fintech company with banking services provided by its partner bank, Thread Bank Member FDIC. Sequin used to offer a credit-building debit card with this account, but it has since moved on to a traditional checking account with a high yield and debit card cashback rewards. Sequin also offers very high FDIC insurance up to $3 million thanks to Thread Bank’s deposit sweep program.

High APY with no requirements

While most high-yield checking accounts have a laundry list of direct deposit, balance or transaction requirements to earn interest, there aren’t any with Sequin. You’ll earn a 3.56% APY as part of your $13 monthly membership, or 1.01% APY on your checking balance if you just have the rewards account without the membership.

Easy to waive the $12 plan fee

The Sequin $12 monthly plan option features easy ways to waive that monthly fee. To waive the $12 monthly fee, you can either deposit $500 per month, spend at least $500 per month with your card, or maintain an average daily balance of at least $1,500. If you were getting the card for the cashback rewards, you’d need to spend $500 per month to earn the 6% cashback anyway, so the waivers are very reasonable in our book.

Cashback debit card

With or without the paid membership, the Sequin Visa Rewards Debit Card offers up to 6% cashback on various purchases if you spend at least $500 per month, and you earn that rate on up to $15,000 in annual spending. If you spend less than $500 per month the cashback rate drops to 0.5% on eligible categories. Sequin states that it offers cashback on purchases commonly made by women to “fight the pink tax.”

Categories you can earn cashback on include:

  • Drugstore and pharmacies
  • Gym memberships
  • Cosmetic stores, such as Ulta, Sephora and Sally Beauty
  • Health and beauty spas
  • Massage parlors
  • Membership clubs, such as sport club memberships
  • No miscellaneous fees

    Sequin doesn’t charge overdraft, ATM or inactivity fees. If you’re charged by an ATM owner, Sequin offers up to four domestic ATM reimbursements per month up to $20 if you have the membership. Reimbursements are sent out on the 10th of each month.

    There is no minimum opening deposit required to open a Sequin High-Interest Checking Account (the account with the membership), but there is a $25 minimum opening deposit required for a Sequin Rewards Checking Account.

    Where Sequin falls short

    One of the only downsides with Sequin is you have to pay $13 per month to get the highest APY on your checking balance. The $12 monthly plan also offers 1.01% APY on checking, and that monthly fee is waivable.

    Sequin’s fees and access

    Type of feeFee details
    Monthly service$13 per month or $130 per year
    Opening deposit$0 for Sequin High-Interest Checking Account, and $25 for just Sequin Rewards Card account
    ATMs
    • Domestic: $0, operator fees may apply
    • International: $0, operator and conversion fees may apply
    Debit card fees
    • Cash withdrawals: $0
    • Card replacement: N/A
    Overdraft or nonsufficient funds$0
    Wire transfersDoesn’t support wires
    Other fees
    • Paper statements: N/A
    • Account closure: N/A

    Compare Sequin to other top debit cards

    Narrow down top checking accounts by monthly fees, APYs and opening deposits. For an even closer comparison, tick the Compare box next to a few providers to see their features side by side.

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    Bonus
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    $0
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    1.20% on balances of $0+
    Get up to $300 cash bonus with qualifying direct deposit. Terms apply. This offer is available until December 31, 2024.
    Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus
    Finder Score: 4.3 / 5: ★★★★★
    Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus
    $0 per month
    $0
    N/A
    Cash Card by Cash App
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    Cash Card by Cash App
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    Step Black Card
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    Step Black Card
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    5.00% on balances of $0 to $1,000,000
    PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Select
    Finder Score: 3.4 / 5: ★★★★★
    Bonus
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    $25 per month
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    $0
    0.01%
    Earn $400 when you open a new PNC Virtual Wallet with Performance Select and establish a direct deposit of at least $5,000+ to your Spend account in the first 60 days.
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    Customer experience

    Sequin doesn’t have a Better Business Bureau profile or a Trustpilot page, so there’s no customer feedback. Sequin was founded in 2019, so it’s still a new company, even among other fintechs with banking products.

    There are a few posts on Reddit about Sequin, but the threads are old and reference Sequin’s old debit-credit card that’s no longer available. Even other financial reviewers still call Sequin’s debit card a credit-debit hybrid.

    Sequin has provided a few customer testimonials on its site, and every testimonial was from a reviewer under the age of 26 and seemingly women. Many state that they’re pleased with the financial education, the forum to discuss financial topics, discounts on women-focused brands and the lack of extra fees they were charged by their previous banks. But it’s best to take these handful of testimonials with a grain of salt — not many banks or fintechs freely display their negative reviews.

    We took it a step further and also searched the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau database and found no complaints for Sequin, which we’ll take as good news.

    Frequently asked questions

    Does Sequin’s debit card build credit?

    No, Sequin’s debit card no longer has credit-building opportunities. Sequin offers financial courses and counseling, which could help you improve your credit score through education, but the debit card and checking account don’t impact your credit score on their own.

    Checking account ratings

    ★★★★★ — Excellent

    ★★★★★ — Good

    ★★★★★ — Average

    ★★★★★ — Subpar

    ★★★★★ — Poor

    We analyze top checking accounts and rate them one to five stars based on factors that are most important to you. These factors include: monthly fees, the ease at which monthly fees can be waived, the breadth of ATM access, ATM and overdraft fees, and customer service.

    Read the full methodology of how we rate checking accounts.

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Bethany Finder

Editor, Banking

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