IMPORTANT!!

We are keeping a close eye on the "Heartbleed" bug you may have heard about. The vendor we use for Online Banking has completed a preliminary assessment and has not discovered any vulnerability. We will be sure to keep you updated should anything to the contrary be discovered. Rest assured that we are doing everything we can to help ensure that your information is safe.

It is always a good practice to use unique passwords for all of the online services you access. If your GCF Online Banking password has also been used with a different service, we do recommend that you change your Online Banking password at this time.





If you currently utilize GCF’s online banking EXPRESS TRANSFER function to make your loan payments, this service will be temporarily unavailable from April 25, 2014 through June 9, 2014. As an alternative to this temporary inconvenience, you can do one of the following:

  • Contact 1-877-589-6600 ext. 320 or 368 between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, to manually complete the transaction.
  • Mail a check to Investors Bank, 101 Wood Avenue South, Iselin, NJ 08830.
  • Sign up for GCF’s online bill payment system and set up a monthly payment to be sent to Investors Bank.


Fast Access




GCF Bank is now part of the Investors Bank family!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Edition #743


Today's Highlights:

Past issues of GCFlash:

December 10, 2013 Edition #739

December 3, 2013 Edition #738

November 26, 2013 Edition #740

November 19, 2013 Edition #739


Weekly Spotlight:

All branches and offices of GCF Bank will close at 2:00 PM Christmas Eve. Regular hours will be observed New Year's Eve. We wish all of our readers a joyful holiday season. *<[:{)


Our Current Rates:

For a listing of our current deposit and loan rates, click here.

Today's National Market Rates
December 17, 2013 6 Mo Ago
06/17/12
1 Yr Ago
12/17/12
5 Yrs Ago
12/17/08
Dow Jones Industrial Average
(Up 2,487.90 or 18.58% since 12/31/12)
15,875.26 (-0.06%) 15,179.85 13,235.39 8,824.34
S&P 500
(Up 354.81 or 24.88% since 12/31/12)
1,781.00 (-0.31%) 1,639.04 1,430.36 904.42
NASDAQ
(Up 1,004.17 or 33.26% since 12/31/12)
4,023.68 (-0.14%) 3,452.13 3,010.60 1,579.31
10 Year Treasury Bond Yield 2.84% 2.17% 1.76% 2.19%
British Sterling 1.6262 1.6363 1.6172 1.5298
Euro 1.3767 1.3342 1.3161 1.3721

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1st Flash

What Is Christmas?

I'm not going to get religious here. Readers who celebrate a different holiday this time of the year or those who do not celebrate at all can relax. Religion, atheism and agnosticism are personal beliefs, we will not deliberate them here.

Instead I refer to Christmas as the spirit that envelops humanity this time of year. The spirit of joy, the spirit of love, the spirit of charity.

Or the lack of those virtues when life is difficult. Not everybody will have a happy holiday this year.

This season is difficult for those who have lost their job. As much as they want to keep family traditions, it may be out of their reach to have both a holiday meal and gifts under the tree.

You can help. Check with local community service groups like the Salvation Army. They may know of a family you can adopt. Or perhaps leave a basket of food on their doorstep.

Have a yard sale with the proceeds going towards gifts for needy children. It may be all they receive this Christmas.

Don't forget the furry family members. A bag of dog or cat food costing less than $15 can feed them for a month. Special treats are a welcome gift, but make sure the product isn't made in China. Chinese-made products have killed nearly 600 dogs and sickened thousands of others.

You may not be able to give a dear friend what they really want this Christmas. That is, good health. What do you give someone who is battling a disease?

Someone who spends most of their time in bed or on a couch may appreciate comfortable clothing like pajamas or track suits. Special consideration should be given for individual circumstances. Someone with limited mobility may need a shirt without buttons. Someone connected to an IV won't be able to wear long sleeves.

A person that doesn't feel well probably won't feel like cooking for themselves. Make your feast large enough to share. Or perhaps they prefer snacks and treats they can share with other visitors. Check dietary restrictions before gifting food.

Boredom often results when you can no longer remain active. What would your friend enjoy to keep them busy? Books? Craft kits? Movies?

If they can't leave the house, send services in. Find a hairstylist or manicurist that makes house calls. Have a meal delivered. Hire a landscaper to clean up their yard for the holiday. Put up Christmas decorations for them.

What they may appreciate most of all is not a material gift, but the gift of your presence. Making them feel loved when the world seems to be crumbling around them may be the greatest gift of all.

Military families face additional hardships at Christmas. Lending a helping hand is one way to thank them for the sacrifice they make all year. Groups like USO, Soldiers' Angels and Operation Homefront provide holiday assistance programs for those in need. Donate your time or money to aid their cause.

An empty chair at your Christmas table is heart wrenching for those who suffered a loss during the year. What was once a time of excitement may accentuate the pain of losing a loved one. Grief doesn't take a magical break when the calendar displays a particular date. In fact, it deepens when someone who you once centered your celebration around is no longer there.

Don't avoid a grieving friend in their time of pain. It may not be comfortable for you to witness, but it's even harder for them to endure. Be there for them.

Grief is an individual process. There is no one-size-fits-all way to approach someone experiencing such a loss. One person may want to talk about their grief, another may want to be distracted from it. One may want to be surrounded by friends, another may need time alone.

Be supportive and comforting. Take queues from your friend as to what they need most. Listen if they want to talk, lend a shoulder if they need to cry.

If you're lucky enough to be having a merry Christmas, do whatever you can to help others do the same.


On The World Wide Web

Dealing with a loss this Christmas? These tips can help you get through this difficult time.

Get the inside scoop on Santa! Track not only his route, but all activity at the North Pole. And find lots of neat things to do, too, at SantaUpdate.com.

Stories to read and color, send Santa a letter, find recipes, crafts and everything Christmas at this site.

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2nd Flash

2013 Flash In Review

What a year it's been.

And I probably wrote that last year as well as the year before. In truth, one never expects the myriad of events that unfold over the course of the year. But we can surely count on them being newsworthy.

GCFlash celebrated its 14th year of publication with a look back at 1999 - the year we transmitted our first issue. Featured also were topics we covered the previous year.

Cybersecurity remains our highest priority. Prudent online safety practices affect every aspect of your life.

We alerted you to a bevy of new scams, warned of potential implications after a spearphishing attack orchestrated by China, cautioned you about an insidious new form of malware called ransomware, and urged you to discuss cyberbullying with your children.

Yet there was good news on the cybercrime front, too. We exposed how cybercrooks were caught and how the Internet caught the Boston Marathon bomber.

One convicted con man explained how and why he was successful in an effort to educate consumers on how to avoid falling victim. We shared his secrets here.

The business world was ablaze with Twitter's IPO. We took a look at new trends like the resurgence of mom and pop type operations and the entrepreneurial mindset in the same issue.

We gave you tips on improving your personal finances by paying down credit card debt, correcting credit bureau errors, and fixing your credit score. We told you how to create your first budget and control medical costs in this issue.

On the technical side, we offered some tricks on navigating Windows 8, how to sell something on CraigsList, and controlling your digital afterlife.

All this amidst the usual spattering of useful information. We gave you things to consider in finding a good nursing home and told you about new devices that allow the elderly to age in place.

We taught you how to ace an interview. Even how to decode your car's VIN.

At this point in our annual Flash-In-Review piece, we typically give you a sneak peak into what to expect in the coming year. Except this year - we can't. We don't really know what our future will bring. Or even how many issues of GCFlash we'll publish before our time draws to a close.

But we do know that our future is bright. We look forward to new and exciting things to come in 2014 with our approaching merger with Investors Bank. We'll share more details in this newsletter as they develop.

The staff of GCFlash wishes all of our readers a very Merry Christmas. May your 2014 be equally as bright as ours.


Tip of the Week

Christmas isn't so jolly for those who fall victim to a scam. People tend to let their guard down during this season of giving. And it gives bad guys reason to cheer. Avoid these 12 Scams of Christmas 2013.


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Quotable

"Weaseling out of things is important to learn. It's what separates us from the animals ... except the weasel." - Homer Simpson


Today in History

1989 - The Simpsons, television's longest-running animated series, makes its U.S. debut.


Flash Fact

The Simpsons were made yellow so that when flicking channels their distinct color would be recognizable.

Have a comment about something you read in GCFlash? Suggestions for future articles? Drop us an email!

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PURPOSE:

GCFlash is a weekly e-mail sent only to its listed customers and associates free of charge. GCFlash informs customers of special product offerings which may be of interest, current interest rates on both deposit and loan products, selected financial news and other financial tidbits. GCFlash is intended to supplement the more comprehensive information listed on the GCF Web site at http://www.gcfbank.com.

GCFLASH PRIVACY STATEMENT

For a copy of our Privacy Policy, visit www.gcfbank.com/gcflash_privacy.aspx

GCF maintains your e-mail address in a confidential and secure database along with much of your other account information, such as mailing address and telephone number, etc. Before aggregating our e-mailing list each week, we filter out any duplicates. In most cases, this inhibits the unintended e-mailing of multiple copies of GCFlash to a single e-mail address. However, because these account records are kept by both individual and account, there is a chance members of the same household could each receive a copy of GCFlash or any other transmission at the same e- mail address - resulting in multiple copies. For example, a husband and wife that both have accounts with GCF may both receive a copy because the names are different but listed at the same e-mail address. This is similar to the manner in which each individual may share a common telephone number. To handle this situation, GCF recommends you simply delete any extra copies of GCFlash as this will ensure that ALL individuals receive any future promotional mailings, which might only be targeted or offered to specific accountholders meeting certain criteria. GCF has the capability to suppress customer e-mail addresses so they are omitted from our transmission list. If you would rather have a specific household member's e-mail address suppressed in our electronic database, simply send us a reply, as stated below, and indicate the accountholder for which you would like to have e-mail suppressed. Please keep in mind that this suppression will mean that NO future e-mails are sent, including special promotional offers. If you have any questions about this process or need additional information, please contact us at netaccess@gcfbank.com.

If you would like to be removed from this electronic mailing list, click this link to send us an email to unsubscribe. Please note, removing your name from our electronic mailing list means GCF will send NO FUTURE NEWS or SPECIAL OFFERS.


GCF Bank
381 Egg Harbor Road
Sewell, NJ 08080
(856) 589-6600
www.gcfbank.com