Friday, September 14, 2012

In today's economy it's no wonder many people are taking managing their money into their own hands. Overdraft fees, interest payments, etc. are all way that big banking corporations look to stick it to the little guy when he's already down and out.  Think about the logic behind an overdraft fee - you're out of money so the bank plans on taking more money from you. Seems ridiculous?

To help combat the hypocrisy that drives today's banking business, one brave Yumologist has given neighborhood banking a new twist. Ethan Clay, of the Pittsburgh, PA area opened the Whalebone Cafe Bank seven months ago as a new addition to his ice cream and coffee shop, Oh Yeah!

Whalebone Cafe Bank provides a unique and somewhat refreshing banking experience, allowing customers to open accounts, make deposits and take out loans. Mr. Clay is not subject to the same rules as a traditional bank because his bank is primarily a gift card savings account.

Here's how it works…customers who make deposits earn interest in the form of "exclamation dollars." A $100 deposit is worth $5.50 per month (5.5% monthly interest rate) that can be spent on ice cream or coffee in his store. 

Loans at Whalebone Cafe Bank seem to operate under a much cleaner process than most banks. An employee of the store recently borrowed $510 dollars to help pay for classes he wanted to take. He is paying the money back to Whalebone at just $60/month and will be charged a flat $25 fee for the loan. Seems civilized to us.

Mr. Clay hopes to have $100,000 in deposits by December 21, 2012. Right now the store/bank is a prototype but he hopes it becomes the neighborhood banking preference very soon.

State officials in Pennsylvania are tearing their hair out over Mr. Clay's ice cream bank. Technically they do not have the authority to shut down a local ice cream store, but they claim they can't allow Mr. Clay to have this much control over people's money.

If you ask us, Mr. Clay's approach seems to have the greater good in mind and offers a much tastier solution to today's economic problems than most other large banks do. We hope to see Mr. Clay's banking endeavor overcome this rocky road and see great success.

Images courtesy of and



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