As mentioned in a previous post, a few people have voiced concerns of the “hoops” that they have to jump through to get their money out from the Sogoinvest account (for example, see Raj’s experience HERE and Sogo-Nogo’s experience HERE and HERE).
With the recent cash dividend distribution from my VWO holding, I decided to test drive Sogoinvest’s current cash withdrawal process and see if there is an excessive delay from the time I request an ACH withdrawal to the time I receive the money in the bank. For comparison, keep in mind that an ACH withdrawal requested from the Ameritrade Izone website on business day T should get the money into my bank account on day T+1. In any case, since I have also some cash dividends to withdraw from Ameritrade Izone, I am going to initiate two withdrawals at the same time and track which one credits the money to my bank account first.
According to Sogoinvest’s website, you need to set up the bank accounts that you want to be able to perform ACH-withdrawals to by first mailing them a completed form with the required information and a voided check. I have completed this step some time back in August 2006. Hopefully they have not lost the paperwork!
Now for the fun part. The following is the time-line that I experienced and I will update it as soon as a new stage is reached:
- 12/29/2006 (Day T+0) :
- Sogoinvest 7.22am PST: ACH withdrawal form was faxed. The remote fax machine acknowledged with a receipt.
- Izone 7.30am PST: ACH withdrawal request submitted online.
- Noticed that the ACH amounts were debited from both Izone and Sogoinvest. Everything seemed to have gone smoothly.
- 01/02/2007 (Day T+1) 7.00am PST:
- Both the ACH requests were credited to my bank account.
Well, I am pleasantly surprised that the ACH push from Sogoinvest had been as fast as that from Ameritrade Izone. I can think of the following reasons why my cash withdrawal from Sogoinvest had been smooth
- I had submitted the appropriate paperwork to link up my bank accounts for ACH-push.
- I had faxed in a properly completed ACH withdrawal form.
Or someone at Sogoinvest is monitoring my blog and giving me priority. 😉
Seriously, I think the real reason why some investors are experiencing problems with cash withdrawals is that they have not submitted the appropriate paperwork (as requested by Sogoinvest) to link up the bank account for ACH-push.
Of course, whether this additional paperwork is necessary or not is questionable since Sogoinvest had already implemented the industry standard ACH verification system (verify two small deposits). Most other financial institutions operate fine with this ACH verification.
Now if only Sogoinvest would implement the online ACH withdrawal request instead of having to fax in the request…