Northern Bank Direct's Money Market (2.50% APY) Available Again


Deal Summary: Money Market Account, 2.50% APY on all balances up to $250k, rate guaranteed through December 31, 2019.

Availability: Nationwide (internet bank)

Remember Northern Bank Direct’s (NBD) Money Market Account promotion from last year? For ten days last June, newly opened MMAs were guaranteed to earn 2.26% APY on balances up to $250k through the end of June 2019. That deal was sweetened in January when the APY on existing MMAs was raised to 2.50% APY.

As DA reader, AnnO, noted in a Forum post yesterday,

The rate has already been 2.5% since January for those of us who signed up last summer. They had continued offering the MMA at a lower rate (1.7% or something like that) to new people after that for a while, but stopped some number of months ago (you could not sign up for a Northern Bank Direct MMA at any rate anymore).

Which leads us to yesterday’s news from NBD: the MMA (2.50% APY on all balances, $5k minimum opening deposit) is again being offered, with a rate guarantee through December 31, 2019.

1.75*%$5k$250kNorthern Bank DirectMoney Market
OTHER TIERS: 0.25% $1m+ | 1.25% $250k - $1m
Rates as of January 21, 2020.

Based on last year’s ten-day account opening window, I asked CSR if there was any indication how long this offer might last. The answer was “it will be available until it isn’t.”

Last June, the MMA offered a blended APY, based on two balances tiers (up to $250k and up to $1 million). This has changed dramatically, with the fine print on the landing page stating

If your average daily balance is less than $250,000.00, the interest paid on the balance of your account will be 2.47% with an annual percentage yield of 2.50%.

If your average daily balance is $250,000.00 up to $999,999.99 the interest rate paid on the balance in your account will be 1.24% with an annual percentage yield of 1.25%.

If your average daily balance is $1,000,000.00 and above the rate will be .25 % with an annual percentage yield of .25%.

NBD has a FAQs page, which includes information about their ACH transfer system. Nothing has changed since I last wrote about the MMA in January, so using another bank’s ACH transfer service to get money in or out of the MMA is still probably a better option.

If you initiate the electronic transfer from your Northern Bank Direct account, there is a maximum daily limit of $5,000.00 (or the available balance in your account, whichever is less) for Interbank (external) transfers per transaction; $5,000 in aggregate per day; and $25,000 in aggregate per calendar month.

The maximum number of transfers is 10 per day and 100 transfers to your account per calendar month.

Although not mentioned in the FAQs, there is a $3 for outgoing ACH transfers (when initiated from NBD) and $25 fee for outgoing wire transfers.

When compared to a savings account, an advantage of the MMA is its limited fee-free check writing, with a maximum of six checks per month. (NBD also offers complimentary standard checks.) While there is no monthly service charge, there is an excessive transaction fee of $20 for each withdrawal over the permitted six per statement cycle. As a member of the SUM ATM network, NBD account owners have access to thousands of surcharge-free ATMs throughout the country.


As the internet division of Massachusetts' Northern Bank, Northern Bank Direct offers its product line nationwide through its online banking platform.

Opening a Money Market Account must be done using NBD’s online application. Although the MMA is somewhat of a promotional special, CSR stated that existing NBD customers are eligible to open a new account and take advantage of the 2.50% APY and the year-long rate guarantee.

Bank Overview

As the online division of Massachusetts-based Northern Bank, Northern Bank Direct operates under the Bank’s FDIC Certificate and shares its financial history.

Northern Bank/Northern Bank Direct has an overall health grade of “A” at, with a Texas Ratio of 6.09% (excellent), based on March 31, 2019 data. In the past year, the Bank has increased its total non-brokered deposits by $313.94 million, an excellent annual growth rate of 25.25%. Please refer to our financial overview of Northern Bank/Northern Bank Direct (FDIC Certificate # 18266) for more details.

While Northern Bank Direct is a new institution, Northern Bank is not. Established in 1960 by brothers Jim and Thomas Mawn, it's the largest privately-held, family-run, full-service bank in Massachusetts. In 59 years, Northern Bank has grown to become 20th largest bank in the state, with assets in excess of $2.2 billion and more than 33,200 customer accounts. From 2010 to 2017, Northern Bank was rated by the S&P Global Market Intelligence Ratings as the top New England bank with assets of $500 million to $5 billion.

How the Money Market Account Compares

When compared to the nationally available Money Market Accounts and Savings Accounts tracked by, Northern Bank Direct's Money Market Account promotional APY currently shares the top spot with four other Money Markets, regardless of deposit requirements.

The above rates are accurate as of 6/12/2019.

Looking for the best Money Market Account rates, either nationwide or state specific? Please refer to our Money Market Account Rates Table page.

Related Pages: money market accounts, nationwide deals, Internet banks

Test3   |     |   Comment #1
Rate lock is great. Low transfer amounts are not. Does the electronic 5K/25K limit apply to wires? Is the dollar amount on a check unlimited?
Test3   |     |   Comment #2
Quick email back: "Those limits only apply to external transfers made through our online website. Wires and check writing do not have limits."
Andy   |     |   Comment #13
Checks are unlimited
AnnO   |     |   Comment #29
I wrote a 5-digit check on my NBD account last fall. Deposited into a shared branch CU that had to make some phone calls and copy my ID to be willing to accept a check that large, but no problem on NBD's end.
redfarm   |     |   Comment #4
When a a bank like Northern Bank Direct has a $3 fee for routine outgoing ACH transfers it's out of the race for my savings. You can get a 2.5% APY from Customers Bank, Western State, or Investors along with respectful business practices that don't nickel and dime customers.
willy12   |     |   Comment #5
I thought I read many months ago that they did away with the ACH fee but maybe not since Ken is still reporting it. It has not been hard to navigate however as I can pull from Ally, AA and Fidelity or write a check.
Dan   |     |   Comment #8
This account has a rate guarantee through the end of 2019. None of the others have that. If the $3 fee still exists, it's easy to circumvent, just pull your money out using another account.
Test3   |     |   Comment #9
Dan is correct. They also offer checks, which many savings accounts do not.
RichReg   |     |   Comment #11
If you think those 'other' instututions aren't saving money by:

A) not giving you checking ability or charging you for checks, or
B) significantly DELAYING ACH times so that these oh-so precious high dollar limits everyone's so concerned about end up LOSING interest, or
C) creating other restrictions like not allowing other banks to use ACH on their accounts..

...then you're sadly mistaken. Northern's MM suffers from none of these maladies.
And BTW, Northern Direct does NOT ...repeat: DOES NOT ... charge any $3 fees for using their ACH service. They ended that almost as soon as it began.
HARK!   |     |   Comment #6
Meh....I have it but yawn......redneck is at 2.40. Who cares?
777   |     |   Comment #7
What a waste of time....just go with Vanguard prime money mkt.
deplorable 1
deplorable 1   |     |   Comment #10
Why would you go for a lower rate that isn't even FDIC insured? If I'm going to invest the yield is going to be much higher than 2.5%. This is good for liquid cash.
777   |     |   Comment #12
Vanguard prime money mkt is earning 2.41%apy... sitting in an acct where funds can be moved into a s/p 500 fund immediately to catch any to catch any sudden market moves to the downside.At Northern Bank you only get one additional benefit FDIC. However we just went thru the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression and Vanguard Funds.was not affected in any negative way. Which institution do I trust more with my assets ... Vanguard or Northern? I will go with John Bogle, father of the low cost mutual fund who created Vanguard and their 4.2 trillion dollars of investors money they manage.
RichReg   |     |   Comment #14
We "just" went through that crisis? Like over 10 years ago?

Its nice to have access to stocks/mutual funds/bonds on the fly. But as any experienced investor can't time the market. Besides, most MFs have a 3-day settlement period, so that's plenty of time to ACH dollars in to cover a trade.

BTW, Northern's been in business since 1960, which is even longer than Vanguard.
777   |     |   Comment #15
comment14.. "Just" yes, in fact many people are now turned off from all financial instruments because of the "recent" financial crisis. 10 years is like yesterday to many who lost money in that crisis, and many did. Also, you are incorrect about settlement unless you are using a brokerage account.In a "reg" account assets need to be in the Prime MM in order to exchange/purchase mutual fund shares. As far as timing the market, experienced investors are always timing the market. Example...we are currently at stock market highs.Is this a good time to be putting new money to work?If your answer is no you are timing the market. Would it be a better time to wait for a 5/10/15 percent correction to put new money to work? Of course, a smart experienced investor would surely seek this path. Invest with Northern, your options are severely limited with no additional upside potential. Of course if you are a passive investor with no desire to be involved in the stock market whatsoever, Northern is an option.
RichReg   |     |   Comment #17
@ 777, #15; "No additional upside potential". That's a bit much. Sounds a lot like trying to time the market.

Many suffered losses from the Lehman collapse, but I'm pretty sure they didn't all succumb to a secondary attack of "Vanguard Tunnel Vision". Being a SAVER, (as opposed to a hedge fund manager) doesn't make you PASSIVE. You can still access a great allocation of Equity/Fixed/Alternative while using Northern's MM quite easily. Because when your external account is properly linked to any of these MF companies, you can easily execute trades the next day after you request money to be transferred.

Concerning yourself with 1 or 2 days is ridiculous. Furthermore, if you want to ONLY invest in Vanguard's funds, that's your prerogative;; doesn't mean everyone has to. And (as Att stated) there are NO guarantees from Vanguard that they'll provide support to their fund during any "crisis";; so I don't see how that makes their MM any more secure.
Att   |     |   Comment #16
#12 I agree with you that Vanguard is a solid company and Prime should be a safe investment that Vanguard MAY back if it has problems. The fund holds several investments and no can say what can happen to those investments( Remember Lehman Brothers).

I do prefer an FDIC insured account and Northern has a guaranteed 2.5% till the end of the year. Northern is an A rated bank. Prime's rate will fluctuate.

Some clips from Prime's prospectus:

The fund seeks to maintain your investment at $1.00 per share, it cannot guarantee it will do so. The fund may impose a fee upon sale of your shares or may temporarily suspend your ability to sell shares if the fund's liquidity falls below required minimums because of market conditions or other factors.

The fund's sponsor has no legal obligation to provide financial support to the fund, and you should not expect that the sponsor will provide financial support to the fund at any time.
DCGuy   |     |   Comment #21
MM mutual funds have no guarantee that you could not suffer a loss from investing in them. Any company stating otherwise would be lying to you. During the 2009 financial crisis, the MM mutual fund regulations were changed to reduce the possibility of a massive withdrawal upheaval by allowing them to add redemption fees and a halt to the trading of the fund if required to prevent the fund from having to cover massive losses and requests for withdrawals. These restrictions did not apply to US Treasury MM mutual funds since their underlying assets are backed by the Federal Government. But even with these type of MM mutual funds, a loss is still possible (though much smaller).

At the moment, I have moved a chunk of my money over to a US Treasury MM mutual fund paying 2.33%. It is state tax free, so the net amount is better than putting the money in a Prime MM mutual fund.
Hector   |     |   Comment #18
Need your 2 and 3yr cd rates.
Numb d
Numb d   |     |   Comment #19
What is the investment amount?
AnnO   |     |   Comment #30
Huh? Use the menus in the top bar of this webpage to see all the CD rates you could want.
Doris   |     |   Comment #20
I love Vanguard funds...and with assets under management over 5 trillion compared to Northern Bank's 2 billion I think many others share my feeling.
Att   |     |   Comment #22
#20 It's not the companies that matter it's the products and the prime money market account and the Northern savings account are not the same. The Northern savings account is insured by the FDIC. Vanguard Prime account has no insurance and if you read what I posted does not guarantee the account. I have my brokerage with Vanguard as well as mutual funds.
Doris   |     |   Comment #23
#22 my comment was "I love Vanguard funds" which clearly means i love the mutual funds offered by The Vanguard Group. the funds are "the products" i like as Vanguard is the low cost leader in the mutual fund industry.
willy12   |     |   Comment #24
Except when they are not...
There's no match for Fidelity in index investing – not even Vanguard.

But, Vanguard money market is higher than Fidelitys.
2.38% versus 2.15%. Which is why Northern comes in handy.
51hh   |     |   Comment #25
Like many others here, I regard Vanguard (or Fidelity) Mutual Funds a totally different investment vehicle from HYS or MM due to obvious reasons. It is like apples-to-oranges comparisons to me, and just me.
Doris   |     |   Comment #26
I have Accra at Fidelity and Vanguard and yes Fidelity is the better choice especially if you are a stock trader. However the Vanguard PMM account has consistently beat Fidelity mm account over the years by a large amount . Vsnguard is too conservative for my liking and back office can be slow to process some requests. If I had to choose I would go with Fidelity.
RZ   |     |   Comment #27
Unless, you have Flagship status, the CS at Vanguard is extremely lacking and is far surpassed by Fidelity. I have accounts at both but actually prefer TD Ameritrade as my main discount brokerage.
Att   |     |   Comment #28
#23 The thread here is about
Northern Directs savings account. Someone mentioned prime MMA as an alternative. People posted some of the differences between the 2 accounts. You stated that you prefer Vanguard over Northern. You said you prefer Vanguard's asset size to Northern's. The size of the company has no bearing on the comparison between the 2 accounts. Facts have been noted about the differences between an FDIC insured savings account and a money-market account.
I have most of my mutual fund assets with Vanguard and have been satisfied with their service. I have my brokerage account with them and a money-market sweep account. I keep no funds in my sweep account until I'm ready to trade.
anonymous   |     |   Comment #31
It's not nationwide. I just tried to apply and got a message that I can't open an account
in my state. :(
willy12   |     |   Comment #32
Why not list the state? I find it odd that nobody has mentioned this before.
anonymous   |     |   Comment #34
willy12   |     |   Comment #35
I would have thought others from your large state would have tried to sign up before now. Wonder if any other states are not allowed? Glad mine is.
Jik   |     |   Comment #36
I'm in California and I just managed to open an account. For now at least since I need to mail them my signature or they will close my account in a couple weeks.
anonymous   |     |   Comment #37
I tried again and this time was approved. The message I received before was obviously an error. Does the $3 ACH fee still apply?
willy12   |     |   Comment #38
See comment #11 above. I tried to set up an ACH and it got rejected for being over their $5000 ACH limit and I have not tried again.

I would not have tried if I thought there was a fee so I probably called or emailed before I tried but I cannot remember offhand.
anonymous   |     |   Comment #39
Thanks, willy12!
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #40
Does anyone know if you can open a second 2.50% money market account at Northern Bank Direct?
(to get 2.50% on more than 250,000)
Cash Cow
Cash Cow   |     |   Comment #41
Go to Wealthfront for higher rate.
willy12   |     |   Comment #42
I had two at one time. I later closed the 2nd one as I no longer needed it.
NBD Customer
NBD Customer   |     |   Comment #43
I got an email today saying they increased my transfer limits to $20000/day and $40000/month. Anybody else?
willy12   |     |   Comment #44
Not me. I only tried one transfer from their end, it was about $5500 but was rejected for being over $5000 so I used my broker instead. Im guessing maybe you've used their transfers?

I think I emailed them and asked if they make exceptions and she said they do but not for your first transfer. I have not tried another one.
NBD Customer
NBD Customer   |     |   Comment #45
I’ve had the account for about a year now and have only initiated one transfer from that account for a couple thousand dollars. All other transfers in that timeframe have been initiated from other accounts as pulls. The transfer amount increase was unsolicited by me. I thought it maybe it represented a policy change on their end.
#46 - This comment has been removed for violating our comment policy.
ABCD   |     |   Comment #49
Notifications on any account changes will be sent out in the next few days.
Cdfan   |     |   Comment #50
I just called to inquire what the rate would be after the 2.50% guarantee ends Dec. 31 and the CSR had no information.
Rate watcher
Rate watcher   |     |   Comment #51
I am awaiting a call from Jim re rates after 12/31/19. Mt money market was opened 6/18 and I have not touched the principal and have had rate of 2,25. Hope that they reward the loyal customers.
#52 - This comment has been removed for violating our comment policy.
#53 - This comment has been removed for violating our comment policy.
Northern Bank Direct Ups Promo Rate On Existing Money Market Accounts
Deal Summary: Existing promotional Money Market Accounts, 2.50% APY on all balances up to $250k, rate guaranteed through June 30, 2019.

Availability: Nationwide (internet bank)

Good news for those who took advantage of Northern Bank Direct’s (NBD) Money Market Account promotion last June: balances up to $250k now earn 2.50% APY, with a rate guarantee through June 30, 2019.

If you missed last June’s offering, here’s a brief synopsis: new Money Market Accounts opened between June 8 and 18, 2018 ($5k minimum deposit) were guaranteed to earn 2.26%...

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Northern Bank Direct Adds New Money Market

UPDATE 6/19/18: According to an alert on the bank's website "the promotional Money Market APY of 2.26% will no longer be available for new accounts as of 9:00 AM Eastern Standard Time on 6/20/18."

Deal Summary: Money Market Account, 2.26% APY on all balances up to $250k, rate guaranteed through June 30, 2019, $5k min/$250k max opening deposit.

Availability: Nationwide (internet bank)

There’s no need for a wordy introduction about Northern Bank Direct’s (NBD) promotional Money Market Account: 2.26% APY (up to $250k), guaranteed through June 30, 2019....

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Deal Summary: 30-month CD (3.01% APY), $500 minimum deposit

Availability: Nationwide (internet bank)

Northern Bank Direct (NBD) has started the new month by introducing a new product: a 30-month CD earning 3.01% APY. The 30-month CD can be opened with a $500 minimum deposit and while there is no stated balance cap, the FAQs page states, “The maximum amount you can initially fund your account with is $500,000.”

NBD made its debut about 16 months ago, featuring five competitive CDs. Rates at new internet banks...

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Northern Bank Direct Ups Long-Term CD Rates
Deal Summary: 36-month CD (2.55% APY), 48-month CD (2.56% APY), $500 minimum deposit

Availability: Nationwide (internet bank)

Northern Bank Direct (NBD) has raised the rates on its long-term CDs this week, but I have to say it’s one of the more unique set of APYs I’ve seen in quite some time: 36-month (2.55% APY), 48-month (2.56% APY), and 60-month (2.57% APY). That’s right – only an increase of 1 bps for each additional 12 months. This is the flattest yield curve I've ever seen.

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Northern Bank Direct Ups Money Market Rate
Deal Summary: Money Market Account, 1.51% APY on all balances up to $250k.

Availability: Internet bank

In the nine months since Northern Bank Direct (NBD) appeared on the internet bank scene, its Money Market Account has gone from offering a slightly competitive rate (1.05% APY) to having the highest rate available on nationally offered MMAs. With today’s 25 bps rate increase, NBD’s Money Market Account (MMA) now earns 1.51% APY on balances up to $250k.

Balances above $250k have two tiered rates: the balance portion between...

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