Mercury banking reviews: Pros, cons, alternatives, and more [for 2024]

Reviewing the Mercury and Mercury alternatives for banking, corporate cards, and treasury solutions.
Rho editorial team
April 14, 2024
Reviewed by
Shannen Balogh
Product Marketing Manager
April 14, 2024

Mercury is a financial technology company primarily providing business banking services to VC-backed startups. 

This post is a helpful resource for founders and VCs evaluating Mercury banking services and their competitors based on the Mercury website and third-party reviews like TrustPilot.

Key highlights: 

  • Strengths: Mercury offers various business banking services and a user-friendly platform for VC-backed startups.
  • Weaknesses: Startups that experience rapid growth may outgrow the platform as it needs capabilities like multi-entity support, AP automation, and other spend management capabilities offered by different platforms. 

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What is Mercury banking?

While some may refer to Mercury as “Mercury Bank,” Mercury is a fintech company, not a bank. Founded in the Bay Area in 2017, Mercury provides a technology platform, and their financial services are offered by its two partner banks, Choice Financial Group and Evolve Bank & Trust, Members FDIC. 

Mercury’s platform offers basic banking products and services tailored to venture capital-backed tech startups. The company offers Mercury business checking and savings accounts, corporate credit cards, treasury services, and venture debt. 

Mercury for business banking

Mercury can handle business basics, including checking accounts, credit cards, and payments by ACH, wire, or check. The platform also provides advanced tools, including treasury and venture debt services.

Mercury banking features

Here is an overview of Mercury's offerings.

1. Business banking services

Choice Financial Group and Evolve Bank & Trust, Member FDIC, provide banking services, including checking and savings deposits. 

There are no account minimums, overdraft fees, monthly fees, or account opening fees to open a Mercury checking or savings account. Customers can deposit checks, use virtual debit cards, and complete other banking transactions.

Note: Funds held in a Mercury checking and savings account are eligible for up to $5M in FDIC insurance through sweep networks – an offering Mercury sometimes refers to as Mercury Vault. 

2. Corporate credit cards

In addition to debit cards, the Mercury business credit card – the IO Mastercard – is available for businesses that maintain at least $25K in a Mercury account. Credit limits are based on cash underwriting, so changes in your Mercury account balance could impact your limit.

IO is a charge card, so customers must pay off the full balance of each pay period. Your pay period may be daily or monthly, depending on the balance in your Mercury account.

3. Mercury Treasury

This offering invests funds into “lower-risk mutual funds” via Mercury’s partner, Apex Clearing Corp. The idea is that startups with more than $5M in deposits can put those funds to work to earn yield.  

However, keep a few things in mind: 

  • It will take several business days to withdraw funds from Mercury Treasury.
  • Money market funds have some disadvantages compared to investing in T-Bills directly.
  • The FDIC does not insure Mercury Treasury. 
  • Mercury Treasury is only available to users with account balances over $500K. 

Customers have access to mutual funds offered by Morgan Stanley and Vanguard. Mutual fund investment balances are insured by SIPC and not by the FDIC.

4. Mercury Venture Debt

Mercury lends to VC-funded companies across stages and industries, and VC firms use venture debt to extend the runway with minimal dilution. Borrowers can request withdrawals and confirm the remaining capital balance in a few clicks.

Mercury loan agreements allow borrowers to withdraw any time during the interest-only period, which can span up to 18 months. After that, firms have a loan payback period of up to 48  months. 

Founders may apply to refinance and refresh the loan after they raise their next equity round.

5. Accounting integrations

Mercury provides some limited integrations with QuickBooks and Xero and offers “Netsuite-friendly reports” – or CSV exports of transactions for reconciliation purposes.

Who is Mercury for?

Like Rho, Mercury is a go-to starting banking solution for many VC-backed startups.

Customers with more than $250,000 in deposits who want a sweep account to increase FDIC insurance coverage may fit Mercury. Mercury is also a consideration for businesses that want access to venture funding.

However, as growth-stage startups scale, they may need additional capabilities like multi-entity support, AP automation, and other important financial operations features. 

Our Mercury banking review

Many VC firms reevaluated their FDIC deposit insurance risks after the Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) crisis in March of 2023. 

Founders need to understand clearly how much FDIC insurance protection they have, the cost of business banking, and how quickly they can access cash balances.

SaaS startup Superfiliate is disrupting affiliate marketing in e-commerce. Discover why their co-founder transitioned from Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) to Rho.

Mercury pros

  • Low fee structure: Mercury does not charge annual fees or account fees. There are no fees for Global ACH,  wire transfers, or additional credit cards. 
  • Mercury Vault solution: Mercury Vault provides up to $5 million in FDIC insurance through partner banks and sweep networks. Businesses with large bank balances can spread deposits between multiple banks and get FDIC insurance coverage.
  • Smooth user experience: Many Mercury customers are satisfied with integrating payments, spend management, corporate cards, and other features into a single platform.

Mercury cons

  • No cash deposits: Mercury does not support cash deposits, unlike many online business checking accounts. Mercury is not an option for companies that process customer payments in cash. 
  • Withdrawing Mercury Treasury funds: Mercury Treasury withdrawals typically take 1-2 business days to post to your account, but transfers can take up to 5 business days. These delays in processing may create cash flow management issues.
  • Money market funds vs. T-Bills: Unlike Rho Prime Treasury, which invests client funds in T-Bills held directly in their name, Mercury Treasury funds are invested in money market funds.
  • Risks of using venture debt: Lenders put terms and conditions in place to ensure prompt loan repayment when due, and loan covenants may restrict how the founders can operate the business while the loan is outstanding. Venture debt is a secured debt, and defaulting on a secured loan will require the founder to give up company assets, which may disrupt or end business operations.
  • Point-solution for cash management: Mercury lacks multi-entity support, and additional finance capabilities startups may want to integrate with banking, including AP automation and expense management. 

If you use multiple software solutions for banking and finance, your software costs and transaction fees can rise quickly. For example, standalone AP automation, expense tracking, and cash management tools can be expensive and have hidden integration costs with accounting software or bookkeeping platforms like QuickBooks.

Managing multiple financial platforms can also place a strenuous burden on your already time-strapped team. A disjointed finance stack increases the risk of errors and makes understanding how your business operates difficult.

Startup founders must balance the need for high-yield earnings on excess cash with investment risks.

Mercury banking fees

  • Business banking: Mercury charges a 1% fee on currency exchange. The foreign exchange fee covers costs incurred by non-USD international wires. Mercury also charges fees for making mass payments on the company’s API and fees to send USD internationally with optional premium processing.
  • Mercury Treasury: There are no fees to open an account or to process transactions. Mercury charges a percentage fee based on assets held in Mercury Treasury. The percentage fee you charge is determined by the total deposits held across all Mercury accounts (checking, Treasury, etc.) The minimum charge is a 0.05% annual fee.

Mercury customer service

Mercury clients must use email for customer support. Phone support is not offered, chat support is unavailable on weekends, and reviews indicate customers need help with customer support responsiveness. 

Corporate checking account interest rates

Mercury’s business checking account doesn't earn interest. Mercury customers with more than $500,000 balances can apply for Mercury Treasury to earn higher yields on excess cash.

Mercury banking alternatives and comparisons

1. Rho

Based in New York, Rho is a comprehensive finance automation platform that empowers startups, SMBs, and middle-market companies with tools to boost their bottom line and operate more efficiently. 

In one platform, businesses can access corporate credit cards with spend controls, automated expense management and accounts payable, business banking, and treasury management – all without platform fees. 


  • Rho Corporate Cards have built-in spend controls, expense management capabilities as needed, and the ability to earn up to 1.25% cashback on spending. 
  • Rho Expense Management allows users to create custom spending rules, capture real-time receipts, and automate approvals.
  • Rho AP automates the end-to-end accounts payable process in just a few clicks and without payment delays that some experience with point solutions thanks to Rho’s integrated business banking. 
  • Rho Prime Treasury is a bespoke treasury management solution that helps customers invest their excess cash in short-dated government securities held directly in their company’s name.
  • Rho Treasury Management Account, built on a network of over 400 FDIC-insured banks, offers access up to $75M in FDIC deposit insurance per entity. 

Rho integrates with QuickBooks Online, Oracle NetSuite, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central, and Sage Intacct.  Rho also supports flat-file CSV exporting, so you can automatically tailor transaction categorization to your business needs.


  • Responsive business banking: Rho clients enjoy platform fee-free business banking services like Same Day ACHs and responsive customer support. 
  • Dedicated customer support: Dedicated customer support is available 24 hours a day, Mon-Fri and 10-7 pm ET on weekends to assist with any customer needs. 
  • More comprehensive finance solution: Rho offers not only expense management, corporate cards, AP automation, and accounting but also business banking and treasury management – all in one platform. 
  • No tiered payment plans: You don’t have to subscribe to Rho to access advanced features that you would have to subscribe to on many competitor platforms. 
  • Dynamic integrations: Rho can easily be integrated with your accounting, HR, and even other expense management platforms like Emburse and Certify. 


  • Straight cashback vs. points: Some companies prefer legacy corporate card solutions like American Express, Chase, or Capital One for the point rewards they offer, even if that impacts process speed. 


The Rho platform is free, though the Rho Prime Treasury capability does have a small annual management fee, which depends on the amount invested but caps out at 0.60%. Learn more about the latest rates at

Best for

Just like middle-market companies, Rho is a great fit for startups. Founders use Rho as a single solution for corporate cards, expense management, payments, banking, and treasury. Startup founders can effectively manage finances with a lean team, saving time and money.

Rho vs. Mercury

Mercury is a good option for startup businesses that are just starting and want access to business banking services built into a technology platform with a good user experience. 

However, many elect for Rho instead because the business banking platform offers fee-free ACHs, Rho Treasury, strong customer support, and advanced capabilities that mean you won't have to change providers as you need more streamlined approvals, a robust expense management solution, and structured workflows become necessary.

This is where Rho shines - providing a comprehensive stack of financial tools that allow unimpeded growth without team members needing platform changes. Once you get the term sheet, we recommend reaching out to Rho to learn how we can help you manage your cash effectively.

Visit G2 to learn how Rho’s fee-free business banking platform, business credit cards, and more compare with different startup solutions, including:

  • Legacy financial institutions: Chase Bank, US Bank, Wells Fargo
  • Newer financial technology companies: Mercury, Ramp, Brex, BlueVine, Novo

2. Ramp

Based in New York, Ramp is a fintech company initially launched in 2019 as a corporate card and expense management platform. It has since expanded its spend management product capabilities to include bill payments, procurement, and accounting integrations. 

Ramp’s mission is to help build healthier businesses and does so through its platform that allows firms to control business spend, save time, and automate busywork. 


  • Corporate credit cards: Ramp charge cards offer up to 1.5% cashback on qualifying spending and customizable spend controls to help enforce your expense policy. 
  • Expense management: Automated workflows that handle expense submissions as an alternative to traditional expense reports and software like SAP Concur. Users can assign specific permissions for expense approvals.
  • Accounts payable automation: Automates data entry and manages invoice intake, bill recording, and payment processing. 
  • Procurement: Workflows that help employees make procurement requests, manage vendor invoices and POs, get approvals, and issue cards to purchase. Ramp also recently acquired a procurement startup, Venue, to boost its capabilities. 
  • Vendor management: Provides a single place to manage all current vendors backed with renewal reminders, contract details, and custom fields. Your data is protected with vendor authentication controls. 
  • Ramp Flex: A paid service that offers businesses additional float on vendor bills. For a fee, Ramp will pay your invoices with the intent of helping you with working capital management, and you are then responsible for repaying the amounts. 
  • Ramp mobile app: Allows employees to upload expense receipts, use virtual cards, and perform other financial management tasks. 
  • Various automation sparklers: Features like a 1Password API access and integrations with Gmail, Uber, Stripe, PayPal, Amazon Business, and Lyft. 


  • Receipt matching: Users can easily match receipts sent by text or email.
  • Reporting: Ramp provides a useful set of real-time reports. 
  • Multiple finance features in one platform Can help simplify your tech stack. 
  • UX: The platform is intuitive and easy to navigate.


  • Ramp Plus feature wall: You must be a paying Ramp Plus or Ramp Enterprise customer to access previously free features like accounting integrations, custom approval workflows, or premium customer support. 
  • No banking or treasury capabilities: Even if you use Ramp for spend management, you can’t replace a frustrating business banking experience or support from incumbents like Chase or Wells Fargo. 
  • Banking transaction fees: Ramp charges to process Same Day ACHs and wires using external bank accounts. These charges can quickly add up if you have a high invoice volume. 
  • Customer support: While Ramp claims to offer call, chat, and phone support on their website, “premium support” and “dedicated account management” are Ramp Plus and Ramp Enterprise features. 


Some of Ramp’s basic features are free to use. However, many automation features are now paywalled behind Ramp Plus and Ramp Enterprise plans, including ERP integrations, purchase order management, and premium customer support. 

As of this article’s publishing date, Ramp Plus is $12 per user per month (when billed yearly; $15 per month otherwise). 

However, larger enterprise organizations must contact Ramp Sales for a more specific quote if they want important features like multi-entity support. 

Best for

Ramp is a viable alternative for businesses with manual expense and payment processes or using outdated tools like Concur or BILL that cause problems, such as expense receipt submission and invoice payment delays. 

Ramp vs. Mercury

Ramp offers corporate card, expense management, and spend management product capabilities. Ramp, however, does not offer banking or treasury capabilities. 

Mercury provides business checking and savings accounts, corporate credit cards, treasury services, and venture debt. The platform does not offer expense management or spend management features. 

Ramp and Mercury do not provide business banking, payments, and corporate cards in a single solution. Rho delivers all these services within one platform, allowing startup founders to run finances leaner and boost profitability.

3. JP Morgan Chase Bank (Chase for Business)

Chase for Business offers bank accounts, loans and financing, business credit cards, and other services.


  • Checking: Chase processes deposits, incoming wires, and payroll for business clients.
  • Mobile App: Customers can make and receive payments using online banking or through the Chase Mobile app.
  • Accept credit and debit cards: Chase Payment Solutions allows customers to accept credit card and debit card payments. Businesses can process payments at the point of sale or online. Chase has integrations with leading e-commerce platforms.
  • ATMs, Bank branches: Customers can access more than 15,000 ATMs and more than 4,700 Chase branches.
  • Ink Business Premier Credit Card: The Chase card features cashback rewards and perks with flexible redemption options. Earn 2.5% cash back on every purchase of $5,000 or more and 2% cash back on all other purchases.


  • National bank brand: Chase is a well-known business brand and offers thousands of ATM and bank branch locations.
  • Building a relationship: When you bank with Chase, you can access other banking services as your business grows, such as a line of credit or other types of loans.


  • Fees: Chase customers may incur monthly service fees on checking accounts and fees at non-Chase ATMs. Ink Business Credit Cards may also charge fees.
  • Fee-free Transaction limits: Chase has a monthly limit on fee-free cash deposits ($5,000) and physical transactions (20). When the number of transactions exceeds the limits, customers incur fees.
  • Frustrating customer support: Customers often experience long wait times when trying to reach customer support. 
  • Not a technology company: Key features you get with technology platforms like Rho, such as accounting integrations, real-time expense management, and AP automation, are not offered by JP Morgan. 
  • No finance integrations: Chase does not offer many important finance tools that startup founders need to operate. Rho offers business banking,  payables, expense management, and treasury within one platform.


Chase checking accounts charge service fees, and the fees decline for customers who carry larger balances. Service fees range from $15 to $95 each month. The Ink Business Premier Credit Card has a $195 annual fee, and Chase offers other credit card options with no annual fees.

Best for

Business owners who can maintain large enough checking account balances to avoid monthly fees are a good fit for Chase. The Ink Business Credit Card options offer bonuses, cashback, and other rewards to businesses that can meet card spending requirements.

Mercury vs. Chase for Business

Mercury provides products and services tailored to VC-backed startups. The company offers business checking and savings accounts, corporate credit cards, treasury services, and venture debt. 

Chase for Business offers checking, credit card and debit card processing, and the Ink Business credit card, but it does not offer other services that founders may need as the startup grows.

What should you look for when picking a business bank account?

  • Minimal fees: The best bank account should be fee-free, or only charge fees for unusual or infrequent transactions. If an account charges fees for common transactions, your costs will increase sharply as you scale.
  • FDIC insurance coverage: Startup founders need a platform that will monitor total balances in each bank account and move funds if the balance exceeds the threshold for FDIC insurance coverage.
  • Integrations with payments and expense management: Basic banking options, whether from traditional banks or newer fintechs, might not offer you the support and advanced payable capabilities you need. Such a scenario can lead to delayed payments, a lack of intuitive visibility into your cash flows, and seemingly uncontrollable monetary workflows.

FAQs: Mercury banking

What is Mercury for business banking?

Mercury is a financial technology company providing business checking and savings accounts, corporate credit cards, treasury services and venture debt tailored to VC-backed startups. Mercury is not a bank, but instead partners with banks to provide banking services

Is Mercury for banking or is it for cash management?

Mercury’s banking services involve cash management activities.

Cash management is the process of forecasting and monitoring cash activity to generate sufficient cash inflows to pay all required cash outflows and maintain proper financial health. Mercury provides tools for these cash management tasks:

  • Managing bank deposit accounts: Managing bank account balances and determining the amount of excess cash not needed for company operations.
  • Funding investments: Moving excess cash in and out of an investment account to maximize the yield earned on a cash position. Treasury management invests excess cash in short-term investments, including treasury bills.

Effective cash management also includes cash flow forecasting and monitoring receivables. Mercury does not provide financial tools for these tasks.

Can you deposit cash into a Mercury banking account?

Mercury customers cannot deposit cash, and the platform is not part of a fee-free ATM network

Is Mercury a good business banking platform?

Mercury is great for startup businesses that want access to business banking services built into a technology platform with a good user experience. 

Customers with more than $250,000 in deposits who want a sweep account to increase FDIC insurance coverage may be a fit for Mercury. Mercury is also a consideration for businesses that want access to venture funding.

However, as growth-stage startups scale, they may need additional capabilities like multi-entity support, AP automation, and other important financial operations features that Mercury does not provide. 

Is Mercury banking secure?

Startup founders should consider the security of both business banking deposits and treasury investments.

Checking and savings deposits

Mercury uses a sweep network, which is a program that spreads customer deposits across multiple banks, reducing the risk of loss if one bank fails. 

The FDIC currently insures up to $250,000 per depositor, per institution. When multiple banks are used for deposits, Mercury customers get FDIC insurance through multiple institutions. Mercury customers are eligible for up to $5 million in total FDIC insurance coverage.

Mercury Vault monitors balances and prompts the movement of funds when a single bank account balance is higher than the $250,000 FDIC insurance limit.

Mercury Treasury investments

Mercury customers can invest excess cash to earn a higher yield. Clients can invest in the Vanguard Treasury Money Market Fund, which invests 99.5% of assets in US government-backed securities.

Investors can also choose the Morgan Stanley Ultra-Short Income Portfolio. Both funds provide up to $500,000 in SIPC insurance. Customers with account balances over $25 million can get access to Morgan Stanley’s fixed-income portfolio management team. 

As mentioned above, money market fund risk and rewards differ from investing directly in U.S. Treasuries held in your name.

When a customer opens a Mercury Treasury account, Apex Clearing Corporation, a FINRA-regulated broker-dealer, opens an account in the customer’s name. Funds are held in custody at Apex, not at Mercury.

How does Mercury make money?

Mercury makes money in five different ways:

  • Interest earned on checking deposits in Mercury bank accounts
  • Merchant fees (interchange fees) are paid by merchants when customers use an IO card or a Mercury debit card
  • Earnings on foreign exchange processing on international wires
  • Customer fees paid by Mercury Treasury customers
  • Origination fees and interest earned on Mercury Venture Debt transactions

How long does it take to open a Mercury banking account?

Mercury will make a decision on your bank account application typically within 1-2 business days.

Founders who are interested in Mercury complete an online application. You must be a US company and provide a federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) number, official business formation documents, and a picture of your government ID.

Wrap-up: is Mercury banking right for you?

Mercury is great for startup businesses that want access to business banking services built into a technology platform with a good user experience.  

Many startup founders need additional capabilities like multi-entity support, AP automation, and other important financial operations features. As Mercury banking reviews point out, Mercury does not provide these services. 

Rho's scalable platform offers an end-to-end solution encompassing corporate cards, expense management, AP automation, business banking, and treasury management under one roof. 

This means startups and small- to medium-sized businesses do not have to juggle multiple services as they grow, saving time and streamlining operations. 

Schedule time with a Rho payments expert today to learn more about Rho!

Competitive data was collected as of February 27th, and is subject to change or update.

Banking services provided and cards issued by Webster Bank, N.A., Member FDIC. All Rights reserved. © 2019-2024 Under Technologies, Inc. DBA Rho Technologies. Rho is a trademark of Under Technologies, Inc. Rho is not a bank. Rho partners with FDIC-insured banks to offer banking products and services.

Investment management and advisory services provided by RBB Treasury LLC dba Rho Prime Treasury, an SEC-registered investment adviser. RBB Treasury LLC facilitates investments in securities: investments are not deposits and are not FDIC Insured • Investments are not bank guaranteed, and may lose value. Investment products involve risk, and past performance does not guarantee future results.

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Rho is not a bank. Banking services and cards issued by Webster Bank, N.A. Member FDIC.