Posted by William Charles on March 31, 2016
Credit Cards

Published on March 31st, 2016 | by William Charles


Two New American Express Charles Schwab Cards Are Available For Sign Ups + Eligibility Requirements

The Schwab Investor Card™ from American Express & American Express Platinum Card® for Schwab are now available for eligible Charles Schwab customers. You can read our full review of both cards in this linked post.

charles schwab

Here is a quick summary for the lazy:

  • Investor Card:
    • No annual fee
    • Sign up bonus of $100 after $1,000 in spend
    • Card earns 1.5% cash back on all purchases with no cap
    • 0% Introductory APR on balance transfers and purchases for the first six months.
  • Platinum Card:
    • Annual fee of $450
    • 40,000 American Express Membership Rewards points after $3,000 in purchases in the first three months
    • Ability to deposit American Express Membership Rewards points into your account at a rate of 1.25¢ per point
    • Receive a $100 Card statement credit if your qualifying Schwab holdings are equal to or greater than $250,000 or receive a $200 Card statement credit if your qualifying Schwab holdings are equal to or greater than $1,000,000, when measured following Card account approval and annually thereafter.
    • Card earns 1x Membership Reward point per dollar spent
    • Standard American Express Platinum Benefits:
      • Airport Lounge Access Program and Priority Pass™ Select
      • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓™
      • $200 Airline Fee Credit

As I mentioned previously the Investor card isn’t worth considering since there are cards that earn 2% cash back on all purchases and cards with much higher cash sign up bonuses. I think the Platinum card is worth considering to get that 1.25¢ per point cash rate on Membership Rewards points and the ability to get the bonus again (more on this below).

Eligiblity Requirements

Update: There is currently a $100 bonus you should be able to get.

To be eligible for either of these cards you need an eligible Charles Schwab brokerage account (if you click the apply now link, it takes you to a redirect page). Here is what they define as an eligible brokerage account:

An eligible brokerage account means a Schwab One® Account or Schwab General Brokerage Account held in your name or in the name of a revocable living trust where you are the grantor and trustee

Schwab One® Brokerage Account

Direct link to account details

There are no monthly fees for this account, but you’re required to deposit $1,000 to open the account (this fee is waived if  you set up an automatic monthly transfer of $100 through direct deposit or Schwab MoneyLink or open a Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking account linked to your brokerage account).

You pay the following fees for trades, but I don’t see why you can’t just deposit $1,000 apply for the card and then withdraw it:

  • $8.95 per online equity trade
  • commission-free Schwab ETF online trades in your Schwab account

Schwab does do a hard pull when you open a High Yield Investor Checking account, I’m not sure if they do a hard pull (and another hard pull if you have the Investor Checking) or not. Let me know in the comments.

Schwab General Brokerage Account

There is no account listed as a ‘Schwab General Brokerage Account’, so it’s been discontinued or it’s another name for the account listed above.

Can I Get The Sign Up Bonus On The Platinum Card If I’ve Held Another Platinum Card Before?

As you should know by now, American Express only allows you to get the sign up bonus on each of their cards once per lifetime. There are many different versions of the American Express Platinum card, so can you get the sign up bonus on the Charles Schwab Platinum card if you’ve gotten the bonus on one of those other cards previously?

It’s too early to give a definitive answer (as the cards have been out for approximately 10 minutes), but I can make an educated guess. In the past American Express have considered all of these different platinum cards as separate products and because of that you’ve been able to get the bonus on each card. I don’t see why this card would be any different.

Final Thoughts

Not sure if I’ll try to wait out a higher bonus on the Charles Schwab Platinum card or not, not really in a rush to get it so will probably just wait as the 40,000 bonus is not being marketed as ‘limited time only’ meaning I think it’s likely to be the standard bonus on this card. I also want to find out if it’s a hard or soft pull to open the brokerage account.

Let me know your thoughts about the new cards in the comments below.

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I recall I opened brokerage account together with the checking account. There was only one hard pull.

Not bad if you get 3x airline credit ($600) and 40k MR points while pay $450 fees.

I can see 2X in a calendar year, but how do you get 3X?

AMEX allows you to cancel the card up to 60 days after the annual fee posting and still get a full refund of the entire annual fee (after that, it’s prorated). So, if you sign up for a Platinum card on say, November 15, 2016, you can get the airline credit for 2016, 2017, and 2018- as long as you complete the qualifying transaction between January 1- January 14, 2018 and cancel the card by January 14, 2018.

This is why I always signup for Platinum cards- any version, really- in December (unless there’s a really good bonus that won’t last until then which would outweigh an extra $200). In this case, as DoC points out, the 40,000 is really nothing special, so I don’t see a reason not to wait until December in order to triple dip on the airline credits.

Awesome. I defer to the master. December it is.

Right, but if the AF posts within the first billing cycle, doesn’t this all become impossible? I did the 100K plat bonus last year and recall having to pay the AF immediately, ended up with a pro rated AF refund of about 300 when all was done.

I want to pull the trigger on this one but will wait until December if you could clarify this

Read carefully, in the footnote of the $1000 opening deposit, it states this “The $1,000 minimum required to open an account is waived if you set up an automatic monthly transfer of $100 through direct deposit or Schwab MoneyLink or open a Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking account linked to your brokerage account.”

What interest most is the Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking since I think quite a lot of people have it.

I was hoping the Investor CC offer 1.5x MR per dollar… I might make sense in a rare case that the MR earned is like Blue from AMEX that it can’t be transferred with this card alone, and you can only deposit the point back to your Schwab account at a rate of 1 cent/point or get gift card at the same rate… The reality ruined my dream…

John Droescher

I assume these credit cards are issued by American express thus not able to be load Serve online.

Talked to Schwab and to Amex. First call for both reps.

I’ve got a SIMPLE-IRA (not the same as a traditional/roth/rollover) that meets the $100/year credit criteria.

Spent nearly an hour total confirming, holding, confirming, holding during the process. Some interesting insights that I hope are true:
* Amex phone rep was given my Schwab info in advance. Amex rep appeared to electronically qualify that I met both the qualification requirements to get the card AND the qualification that I met the $100-$200/year customer appreciation benefit BEFORE application.
* Rep confirmed that the $100/year credit will be evaluated again within 5 days of account approval. Presumably the credit follows quickly after.
* Applied and approved.

Afterwards, I went back to the web application process. Having observed it in action on the phone, I noticed the first page of the application process says:
“you agree to allow Charles Schwab & Co., Inc., (“Schwab”) to provide your household asset range at Schwab and Schwab Bank to American Express in order to evaluate your application, and, if approved, to service your account. If your application is approved, Schwab will also inform American Express of the amount of the Schwab Appreciation Bonus‡ to which you are entitled following Card account approval and annually thereafter.”

That seems pretty consistent with the phone rep.

I was tempted to wait for a larger bonus but after looking over prior MS, Ameriprise, and MB plat amex products, I saw no history of substantially larger overall bonuses and this card, at $450-$200 airline credit-$100 Schwab Customer Appreciation = $150 is actually a keeper for me purely for the benefits. Opted to just go for it. It also timed in pretty well with a bunch of considerations unique to me.

Clarifying one point I meant to make above… I was largely concerned about whether my SIMPLE-IRA account would qualify since it was not in the list of accounts that qualify toward the Customer Appreciation Bonus. If the process I described above is true, then it would seem that accounts beyond those listed may qualify toward it and that they can determine your qualification for the Customer Appreciation Bonus before the application is submitted. Fingers crossed.

Wow that $1.25 xfer bonus is huge. I think by the end of the year I’ll have 200-300k points with Amex. 300,000 points = $3,750 instead of $2,800 (I forgot he exact amount).

Can the membership rewards points to transferred to airline/hotel partners, or just converted to a cash balance?

So do they do a hard pull when I open a Schwab One® Brokerage Account?

Yes, Equifax.

Two questions. (1) If you have an AMX Personal Gold card (downgraded from a personal Platinum card several years ago), can you still qualify for this Schwab AMX Platinum card? (2) Has anyone not received the bonus because they had a American Express personal Platinum card before or has this been confirmed as a separate product eligible for the bonus?

Any insight whether husband and wife could each apply for and be approved separately based on joint assets? $200 airline credit and $200 relationship reward mean $50 net cost (even before bonus), vs $175 for AU.

I applied and was instantly approved. I activated the card yesterday and received the relationship reward credit that same day (even before the annual fee was charged).

Quick question here, I believe I misunderstood this:

When you say:
“Ability to deposit American Express Membership Rewards points into your account at a rate of 1.25¢ per point”

As far as I know we only have 1 Membership Rewards account, it means all my AMEX cards share the same MR account, in this case, I can use the points I already had before, to add funds to my new account. If this is the case, this rate it’s one of the best conversion rates for MR.

I have about 200K MR, with this conversion I can have about USD 2.5K effortless. Is my assumption correct?

Could hard inquiries get combined if you apply for the Schwab Platinum and an Amex directly issued card, like the Green card (purely for bonus), on the same day?

FYI, Schwab sent email last night offering 60k for Platinum after $5k spend in 3 mos. Does not appear to be targeted–email explicitly says to share with friends and family.

Would you mind sharing the link for 60k MR?

The link at the top of the page gives me 60kpoints for 5k spend. Trying to triple dip the $200 airline AA card and cash out some points.

Annual fee is now $550.

How will you triple dip? Dec 17, any 2018, Jan 19 and then immediately cancel when the annual fee hits on the same statement? Evidence of that working without a clawback from AMEX?

Walter, That’s the plan. I haven’t heard of them clawing back yet for that. I applied for the checking account, and the brokerage account was part of the application process. I didn’t put anything into the checking or brokerage account yet. Then I applied for the amex plat schwab card and was approved.

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