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Ken Tumin founded the Bank Deals Blog in 2005 and has been passionately covering the best deposit deals ever since. He is frequently referenced by The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and other publications as a top expert, but he is first and foremost a fellow deal seeker and member of the wonderful community of savers that frequents DepositAccounts.

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Deposit Rate Survey and Commentary for April 2012

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In the last few months we have been issuing monthly press releases. The press releases are intended to highlight important DepositAccounts.com articles from the previous month. They are also intended to provide a summary of average deposit account rates and how they have changed in the last month. We thought these press releases would be of interest to readers. Thus, I'm starting to post them in the blog. The April press release is below. Please note that I will continue to post my weekly summaries without any changes.

One interesting thing to note is that the average rate of internet savings and money market accounts only had a slight decline (from 0.676% in March to 0.672% in April). The addition of two new internet savings accounts (Barclays and CIT Bank) helped to prevent a larger reduction in the average. The launch of new internet banks is a bit of good news in this awful interest rate environment.

New Internet Banks Help to Offset Declining Rates - Monthly Deposit Rate Survey and Commentary

Across a nationwide survey of more than 275,000 rates at 8,000 banks and credit unions, average savings account interest rates continued a steady decline in all major categories of savings products. In March the Fed held steady on its commitment to keep rates near zero until late 2014. The only bright spot for savers has been a few new internet banks' introducing new savings account products. In February, TIAA-CREF launched TIAA Direct with a very competitive internet savings and money market account. In March, Barclays launched its own internet bank with competitive savings accounts and CDs. In this interest rate environment of very low rates, savers can benefit by looking online and by being prepared to switch to new internet banks that offer good deals.

Top Stories for This Month:

  • Automatic Renewals Can Be Costly for CD Investors
  • New Internet Bank with Savings Account and CDs Launched by Barclays
  • Flexible CDs and Savings Accounts with Rate Guarantees
  • Another Case of Customers Kicked Out of Their Reward Checking Accounts

Bank Failures for March

5 banks and 2 credit unions closed in March of 2012. This is an increase from the 3 banks and 2 credit unions that closed in March of 2011. Notable closures included Fidelity Bank of Dearborn, Michigan with $818.2 million in assets (rated 1-star at DepositAccounts.com, indicating "high risk"; view health ratings for any bank or credit union and list of troubled banks by Texas ratios).

Internet Savings

The average internet savings and money market account rate decreased by less than 1% from 0.676% in March to 0.672% in April. This exceeds the average rate of all savings accounts by 43 basis points.

Savings

The average savings account rate decreased by over 4% from 0.251% in March to 0.242% in April. The average rate among the top 10% of the most competitive nationwide banks decreased by over 4% from 0.758% to 0.727%. Alabama has the best average rate in the nation at 0.43% while Arizona has the worst at 0.15%.

Checking

The average checking account rate decreased by over 4% from 0.155% in March to 0.149% in April. The average rate among the top 10% of the most competitive nationwide banks decreased by over 5% from 0.525% to 0.496%. Louisiana has the best average rate in the nation at 0.220% while Idaho has the worst at 0.080%.

1-year CD

The average 1-year CD rate decreased by over 3% from 0.574% in March to 0.554% in April. The average rate among the top 10% of the most competitive nationwide banks decreased by over 2% from 1.060% to 1.036%. District of Columbia has the best average rate in the nation at 0.710% while Nevada has the worst at 0.39%.

5-year CD

The average 5-year CD rate decreased by over 3% from 1.610% in March to 1.566% in April. The average rate among the top 10% of the most competitive nationwide banks decreased by over 3% from 2.246% to 2.184%. Maine has the best average rate in the nation at 1.76% while Nevada has the worst at 1.26%.

Reward Checking

The average reward checking account rate decreased by over 1% from 1.281% in March to 1.263% in April. The average rate among the top 10% of the most competitive nationwide banks decreased by over 1% from 3.265% to 3.247%. The average balance cap for reward checking accounts has fallen from $22,034 to $21,809. Alaska has the best average rate in the nation at 2.25% while Nevada has the worst at 0.48%.The balance cap is the maximum balance that qualifies for the reward checking account's top rate.

About Deposit Accounts

DepositAccounts.com monitors more than 8,000 banks and credit unions and provides weekly and monthly rate surveys and monthly commentary covering savings trends. On its consumer-facing site, DepositAccounts.com, it provides in-depth, unbiased reviews and the industry's most thorough comparison tools to help better inform consumers in their banking decisions.



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