Published on August 9th, 2018 | by Chuck76
Getting the Amex Platinum Morgan Stanley Card
American Express offers various flavors of their premium Platinum charge card, one of which is cobranded with the Morgan Stanley investment bank. The card comes with a 60,000 Membership Rewards points signup bonus, and has all the regular Amex Platinum benefits like airline incidental credit, Uber credit, etc, as well as the hefty $550 annual fee.
[Link to American Express Morgan Stanley cards.] There’s also a separate Amex Morgan Stanley no-annual-fee cobranded card which comes with a 10,000 points signup bonus.
No one ever gave much though about these cards because you need a Morgan Stanley brokerage account to get it, and they apparently have always limited their customer base to those with large actively-managed investment accounts.
Windbagmiles recently discovered that Morgan Stanley has a new investing platform called Access Investing which is basically a passive investment platform which you can set your investment strategy and they create a fund to match your goals. The account requires a $5,000 minimum and comes with a .35% fee.
Going forward, it’s not so difficult to become a Morgan Stanley client which makes you automatically eligible for Morgan Stanley’s cobranded American Express cards. There is obviously the hassle of setting up the investment account, the .35% fee, and the $5,000 float which will put off a lot of people, but the option exists. Some may find it interesting to score the sweet 60,000 MR points signup bonus; keep in mind you might be losing a few dollars on the $5,000 investment when compared to other brokerage fees. (Reader Ben notes that Morgan Stanley does tax loss harvesting for you so they might be worth the fee.)
This adds Morgan Stanley to the list of other Platinum cards version you can hold, including the regular/original version, the Schwab version, and the Ameriprise version. The Mercedez Benz version has been discontinued, and the Goldman Sachs version requires an invite.
An additional advantage of the Morgan Stanley version over the others is that they allow one authorized user Platinum card at no additional fees. Other Amex Platinum cards charge for adding a Platinum authorized user card, though you can add a non-Platinum authorized user who can use the card without getting the benefits.
It’s worth noting that there have been on-and-off rumors of Amex enforcing a one-Platinum-bonus rule across all version, meaning you wouldn’t get the signup bonus if you’ve gotten any Platinum personal bonus before. As far as I know, you still do typically get the signup bonus for each version separately.