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The Free iPod Shuffle Is the New Bank Toaster

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DAILY DEPRESSION DATAPOINT
DailyFeed
The toaster giveaway is as old as the first banking crisis. The plan is simple: entice deposits with a free gift.

"Some deposit-starved banks have long tried attracting new business with gifts like toasters and TV sets. But the latest gimmick is an improbable appeal to human friendship. Banks in New York, Chicago and St. Paul are now making their pitch to the potential customer's pals. "Bring a friend," advertises New York's Manufacturers Hanover Trust. If someone deposits $75,000 for 2½ years, his pal will collect a sponsor's fee of $2,343.75. The First National Bank of Chicago pays a finder $25 for each $1,000 deposited by a buddy into a 30-month fixed-term account. Other banks reward friendly persuasion with grandfather clocks, microwave ovens and electric organs." An August 11, 1980 excerpt from Time Magazine, on the "new toaster giveaway" reminded me of this more modern twist on the free toaster from Citibank (C). The new toaster? Why, the ubiquitous Apple iPod Shuffle, of course.

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