I don’t know about you, but there was something that “felt good” about having US Savings Bonds. You were investing in the country you love, and the belief that without a doubt they were both responsible and able to pay you back with interest. Holding the bond for a period of time you could double your investment. They earned interest indefinately.
It was a standard gift to give for a new baby, because you knew that by the time they got around to cashing that bond, the interest would have accrued to a much more favorable number than your original investment.
It was a safe-haven against anything and everything that we imagined (at the time) could go wrong. “At least I have those bonds” ~ and that felt like a security blanket of sorts.
Well, that bubble started to burst a while back when the interest rate went close to 0% (current rate .60%). In the 1980’s bonds matured in 8-12 years, some had fixed rates of interest, some had market rates with a guarantee of a certain percentage of interest. Todays bonds (since June 2003) take 20 years to mature to their face value, and only earn interest for 30 years.
All banks handled bonds. No longer. In fact as of December 31, 2011 they are all going electronic. Existing bonds are not affected, and are still valid and able to earn interest for 30 years. Banks will still cash your bonds for you, or even convert your paper bonds into electronic ones. If you wish to buy bonds after December 31st, you will need to go to www.treasurydirect.gov
But for me, it’s annoying. I just do not feel the same about an electronic stake in this great country! I can’t hold it, I can’t see it, and well, it just isn’t the same.
All opinions in these articles are mine and I have not been compensated in any way for these posts.