Countrywide Bank Proudly Supports 'America Saves Week'

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Bank encourages consumers to establish a savings plan

Serious savers consider their savings account as ‘one way’ only, meaning that they make more deposits than withdrawls, and they succeed at this by keeping their transactional banking relationship at one bank and savings at another

Thousand Oaks, CA February 26, 2008 -– Continuing its long-standing effort to educate consumers about the importance of saving money, Countrywide Bank, FSB, the third largest federal savings bank in the U.S. and a member of Countrywide Financial Corp.’s (NYSE: CFC) family of companies, today announced its support for America Saves Week. Running from Feb. 24 through March 2, 2008, America Saves Week is supported by more than 1,000 non-profit organizations, government agencies and corporations.

“Countrywide Bank has been a strong advocate for consumers who know they should be saving more of their hard-earned money, but find it challenging to establish savings routine,” said Countrywide Bank Managing Director Pierre Habis. “We are proud to support America Saves Week, and we encourage everyone to get serious about saving, particularly since we’re in the midst of tax season when many people take time to assess their financial situation. There’s no better time than this week to focus on what we all need to do to save more.”

The national effort, which is organized by the Consumer Federation of America and the American Savings Education Council, is aimed at reaching institutions and individuals to increase awareness that people need to save money, reduce debt and build wealth.

"Today's economy hits home the value of paying attention to having a financial reserve, avoiding credit card debt, and using 401ks or IRAs to save for many tomorrows,” said Employee Benefit Research Institute President and CEO Dallas Salisbury. “Like health, a regular checkup is always a good way to build a plan and then stay on track. We hope that will do that for every American. And, that it will help make every week America Saves Week."

Get Smart, Get Serious…About Saving
In October 2007, Countrywide Bank conducted a nationwide survey which showed that many Americans who have a savings account (61 percent) have not established an automatic savings plan, whereby a designated dollar amount is regularly deposited into a savings account. The survey also revealed that 32 percent of adults with a savings account do not know the interest rate on their account, and a full 45 percent know they are earning less than five percent. The survey was conducted by Harris Interactive® for Countrywide Bank.

The findings indicate that there are areas where Americans can improve their financial circumstances by using basic savings strategies – establishing an automatic savings plan and always seeking the best rate possible, according to Habis.

“Consumers are potentially leaving money on the table by not following this simple formula,” said Habis. “Serious savers consider their savings account as ‘one way’ only, meaning that they make more deposits than withdrawls, and they succeed at this by keeping their transactional banking relationship at one bank and savings at another,” said Habis.

“The good news for consumers is that it’s easier than ever to save their hard-earned money. Many banks today allow customers to open and fund accounts online, transfer money online from a primary checking account into a high-yield savings or money market account at a different institution, and automate the amount and frequency of deposits.” Habis continued, “These ‘set it and forget it’ features remove the ‘consistency and discipline’ obstacle that has traditionally prevented people from building their nest egg.”

About Countrywide Bank
Countrywide Bank, FSB, is a member of the Countrywide Financial Corporation (NYSE: CFC) family of companies. Countrywide Bank offers consumers highly competitive rates on certificates of deposit and money market accounts and, through its family of companies, also offers investment* and insurance products. Customers can review banking products and services, check rates on deposits, and apply for new accounts by phone, online, or at one of more than 200 financial centers located throughout the country. In addition, the company offers the same superior rates and unsurpassed personalized service to its business customers through its Premier Business Banking and Commercial Banking Divisions. For more information about Countrywide Bank, visit Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

*Countrywide Investment Services and Countrywide Insurance Services Products
Not FDIC Insured    Not Guaranteed By Any Bank    Not A Deposit
May Lose Value    Not Insured By Any Federal Government Agency


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