About Ken Tumin

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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Survey of the Best CD Rates for December 7, 2012


Survey of the Best CD Rates for December 7, 2012

As is typical with a new month, there were several rate changes. Not all were cuts. There were a few rate hikes. Most noteworthy was at PenFed which increased its 2-year, 3-year and 4-year CD rates. Its 2-year and 3-year CD rates are now rate leaders with a 1.50% APY and 1.75% APY. Unfortunately, PenFed slashed its 1-year CD APY from 1.26% to 1.00%.

The best 1-year CD deal that's nationally available is now at Chartway Federal Credit Union which increased the rates of its specials by 25 bps. Its special 1-year CD now has a 1.26% APY (1.51% with a checking relationship), and its special 6-month CD has a 1.00% APY (1.26% with a checking relationship).

The other rate changes for the nationally available CDs were rate cuts. CIT Bank reduced its 2-year and 3-year Achiever CD rates by 5 bps. The 2-year Achiever CD is now 1.20% APY and the 1-year is 1.05% APY. These are still competitive when you consider the add-on deposit and rate bump-up features.

Another disappointment was at Discover Bank. Its 5-year CD rate fell 5 bps to 1.70% APY, its 7-year CD rate fell by 10 bps to 1.90% and its 10-year CD rate also fell by 10 bps to 2.00% APY.

Discover Bank remains the only internet bank offering a 2.00% APY, but this now requires a very long 10-year term. For terms over 5 years, the only other banks offering a CD rate close to this is E-LOAN with a 1.70% APY 6-year CD and Dime Savings Bank with a 1.70% APY 7-year CD. Even with credit unions, you can't find much higher rates. The highest is currently 2.15% APY for a 7-year term and a $100K minimum at Navy Federal Credit Union. Unfortunately, Navy Federal has limited membership. For credit unions available to all, the highest yield is 2.00% at PenFed (7-year CD), at Air Force FCU (7-year C) and at Apple FCU (10-year CD).

These longer terms don't get you much extra yield these days. The 5-year CDs look more appealing than the 7-year and 10-year CDs. We still have several all-access credit unions offering 2.00% APY, and Pen Air FCU even has a 2.20% APY for a $100K minimum deposit. There is even one small bank with a 2.00% APY. It's Citizens State Bank in Florida which is offering a 2.00% APY 5-year Jumbo CD which can be opened online from any state. Close behind is Green Bank, N.A. which is a small bank in Texas. It's also offering CDs that can be opened online from any state. Its 5-year CD has a 1.95% APY with a minimum of only $1,000.

As I mentioned last week, the downside with some of these credit unions and small banks is that you might not have an easy time with the account application. For example, Green Bank requires you to mail a check to fund the CD. The online application currently can't handle electronic funding.

Local CD Deals

For CDs that are only available locally, there were several institutions that cut rates this week. One noteworthy one was at LOMTO Federal Credit Union in New York City. Its CD rates fell by 15 to 30 bps. Even with these rate cuts, it still has some competitive CDs including a 5-year CD with a 2.00% APY.

Only one bank on my list made a rate hike this week. Doral Bank NY raised its 1-year CD rate from 1.10% to 1.15% APY. Its other CD rates remained the same including its competitive 1.20% APY 18-month CD and 1.40% APY 2-year CD.

I added three new credit unions to the lists.

The first addition is Jefferson Financial Credit Union which has a field of membership in Louisiana that includes parts of New Orleans. It's offering a 2.00% APY 4-year CD and a 2.25% APY 5-year CD.

The second addition is HeritageWest Credit Union which has a field of membership that includes parts of Utah including Salt Lake City. It's offering two competitive CDs: a 1.26% APY with a 1-year term and a 2.02% APY with a 5-year term. HeritageWest is a division of Chartway FCU, but it continues to operate like a separate credit union with a Utah field of membership.

The last addition is Jeanne D'Arc Credit Union which has a field of membership that includes parts of Massachusetts and New Hampshire. It has a special 18-month CD with a 1.20% APY.

Finally, don't forget the largest bank in my local deals list. BBVA Compass continues to offer its CD specials which includes a 2.00% APY 5-year CD and a 1.25% APY 2-year CD. An extra 10 bps is added to the CD rates if the customer opens a CompassLink Checking. BBVA Compass requires new customers to reside near one of the bank's branches. These are located in Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, New Mexico and Texas.

Long-Term CD Break Strategy

For the short-term CDs in my lists, you might notice CDs with the note "5-year CD closed after X years". These take into account the yield after the early withdrawal penalty is applied. Since Ally Bank's 5-year CD only has a 60-day interest penalty, it's still a good deal when closed early even with the recent rate cuts.

The risks of planning for early withdrawals of long-term CDs were recently highlighted by the deposit agreement change at Ally. The risks have also been seen at credit unions which have raised the early withdrawal penalties on existing CDs. I have more details in this blog post.

Note About the CD Survey

As I described in my rate table overview, you can use our CD rate tables to find the best rates for both nationally available CDs and local CDs. This CD survey blog posts are intended to highlight nationwide CD deals that may not be apparent in the tables. For example, I'll include the post-penalty yields of a few long-term CDs.

The CD survey blog posts are also intended to highlight the local CD deals that are available in large metro areas. There are many high CD rates, but most of these are at small banks in rural areas or at small credit unions with very narrow fields of membership. In these local CD surveys, my focus is on local CD deals that are in big cities or that are available in large areas of a state.

Yields Accurate as of December 7, 2012

Under 1-Year CD Rates

  • Noteworthy Local Deals

1-Year CD Rates

  • Noteworthy Local Deals

18-month CD Rates

  • Noteworthy Local Deals

2-Year CD Rates

  • Noteworthy Local Deals

3-Year CD Rates

  • Noteworthy Local Deals

4-Year CD Rates

  • Noteworthy Local Deals

5-Year CD Rates

  • Noteworthy Local Deals

Over 5-Year CD Rates

  • Noteworthy Local Deals

Note: All rates listed above are Annual Percentage Yields (APY) which factor in compounding.

Related Pages: CD rates
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #1
I would say that DCU, 1.50%  for 8 Mo is the best and easiest to join.  I tried to join Chartway FCU but they refused my application saying I had to many inquiries.  Even though I wanted to give them MONEY, to hold they only accept folks with 2 or less inquires and I had several.  Just trying to get the best interest!!

Paoli2   |     |   Comment #2
#1  Your treatment from Chartway is very concerning.  Evidently they know how desperate most savers are to get the highest rates and now "they" can pick and choose which savers they will even allow to give them money!  If this was not so concerning, it would be laughable!  Who would have thought it would come to this?
Paoli2   |     |   Comment #4
#1/#3:  I'm with DCU also and it is nice to have a bank or credit union actually treat one like they are glad to have you as a customer.  I have a DCU Shared Branch nearby in my city so it makes using them even easier.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #3
This is #1.  I did join DCU, a simple process.  Open the online application, send a scanned copy of DL and a form of address verification ( I scanned my Direct TV bill). They will only take maximum $3000. from ACH to open account. Lastly they mail you a pin # and a few days later you receive the account #. Yesterday I visited a Service Center nearby and deposited a large check to the account which they posted to the original $2985. CD. 

DCU actually wanted my money!!

Anonymous   |     |   Comment #5
Anonymous  #1  I have the same problem. No delinquent debts, great job history and a good (but not especially great) credit score. The reasons: not enough outstanding credit and too many hard pulls on my credit history. Those hard pulls are attributable to CD accounts I have opened based on information posted here. The latest is Pentagon FCU. (By the way, thanks for publicizing that one, Ken). The really odd part is that I haven't opened a new credit card account in five years. So, besides supposedly not having a high enough credit limit on my existing credit cards, my credit score is being hurt by inquiries from depository institutions with which I have no credit relationship. It ain't fair.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #6
I just did a refi on my mortgage.  I had to account for any hits on my credit report before the refi could take place.  I have an 800 plus credit score and was refinancing with my current lender.  Took 87 days before we losed on the refi.  Welcome to the new world of being over caitious/  I was told it would be an easier refi if i had missed payments
Scott   |     |   Comment #7
In the last month I have lost out on 3 deals because they would not open account because of my credit freeze, Cambridge Savings Bank, DCU and now Chartway. What happened to Banks using Chex System to verify? I keep my score above 800 and have no hard inquires on my report, since I never plan on borrowing money I wonder if I should care anymore? And the way it's starting to look even if I do say **** it and unfreeze  to open new accounts I could be rejected in the future because of opening to many deposit accounts. I already feel like some of my local banks have my picture up in the back with the words "Rate ****" under it
Paoli2   |     |   Comment #8
Scott:  If "we" are considered "Rate ****s", our government must be our "****s"!  In that world I don't think even the real ****s could get away with taking such advantage of their "workers" by paying them 1%!