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Best Bank Account Interest Rates - Summary for Week Ending February 22, 2014


Best Bank Account Interest Rates - Summary for Week Ending February 22, 2014

One of the new voting members on the Fed this year, Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher, said in a speech on Friday that he’ll remain a strong advocate of tapering and that the Fed is "providing more than enough monetary accommodation." He has long been against quantitative easing (QE) so it’s nice to see him as a voting member on the Fed this year.

Currently there’s no indication that the Fed intends to hold back on tapering, but if the economic data worsens and the decline is shown to be more than just weather related, many on the Fed may start pushing to delay tapering.

Treasury yields didn’t change much for the week. Some weak economic reports continue to push down yields, but there is still uncertainty about how much of the weakness is weather related. The change in Treasury yields and Fed funds futures in the last week are shown below. The following numbers are based on Daily Treasury Yield Curve Rates and the CME Group FedWatch.

Treasury Yields:

  • 1-month: 0.02% up from 0.01% last week
  • 6-month: 0.08% up from 0.07% last week
  • 2--year: 0.33% up from 0.32% last week
  • 5--year: 1.56% up from 1.53% last week
  • 10-year: 2.73% down from 2.75% last week
  • 30-year: 3.69% same as last week

Fed funds futures' probability of rate hike by:

  • Jan 2015: 16% up from 14% last week
  • Apr 2015: 35% up from 32% last week
  • Jul 2015: 60% up from 57% last week
  • Oct 2015: 82% down from 83% last week

Savings & Checking Account Rates

This was a slow week for savings and money market accounts. None of the banks or credit unions in the table below changed rates.

The only thing new to mention regarding savings and money market accounts is that TIAA Direct finally started accepting new applications for its accounts. Unfortunately, its savings and money market account rates are not competitive as compared to other internet banks. The top rate of the money market account is only 0.50%, and the savings account rate is only 0.40% Thus, I’m not going to add them to the table below. TIAA Direct used to be the rate leader when it was first launched in early 2012.

The number of institutions offering a non-promo 1% savings or money market account remains at six (I consider Salem’s rate a promo for new customers). SFGI Direct is the latest one in this club with its 1.01% APY savings account. Four of those six are First Trade Union Bank savings account, MySavingsDirect savings account, the new iGObanking.com money market account and the SmartyPig savings account. All of these are offering a 1.00% APY. The highest rate continues to be at Connexus Y.E.S. Money Market Account which has a top-tier APY of 1.15% for a $100K minimum balance. An important downside of this account is that it requires an active checking account and direct deposit.

Reward Checking Accounts

This was also a slow week for the nationally available reward checking accounts.There were no rate changes in the table below.

However, there is one addition. Thanks to a DA reader’s email, I learned of the Everyday Rewards Checking account from First American Bank in Illinois. This reward checking account currently pays 2.00% APY on balances up to $15K. The bank is currently accepting applications from any state. An application can be done online or by phone.

There are currently only six banks and credit unions in my table below offering reward checking yields of over 2.00% for balances of at least $15K. So this First American Bank’s Everyday Rewards Checking account is a fairly good deal. However, this account does have one important downside. If you don’t meet the monthly requirements, you not only get a much lower interest rate for the month, you also get dinged with a fee of $4.95.

To find the highest reward checking rates and balance caps in your state or nationwide, please refer to our reward checking rate table. If you're new to these tables, my rate table guide should be useful. If you're new to reward checking, please refer to my blog post, 10 Common Traits of High-Yield Reward Checking.

New Additions

  • First American Bank Everyday Rewards Checking - 2.00% (up to $15K)

Rate Hikes:

  • None this week

Rate/Balance Cap Cuts:

  • None this week

Certificate of Deposit Rates

My recap of CD rate changes and the list of CD deals will now be in my survey of the best CD rates. This recap will now focus on banking news of the week and liquid accounts.

Recap for the Week - Links to Last Week's Posts

Banking News/Resources Savings/MMA - National CD Deals/Resources - National Checking/Savings/CC Bonuses Reward Checking Accounts CD and Money Market Deals - Local Posts from Previous Weeks

The rates listed below are based on Annual Percentage Yield (APY). No minimum balances are required unless noted. MMA next to the rates indicate a money market account. Most MMAs have check writing and ATM cards. Online savings accounts usually lack both of these. Previous weekly summaries are available at this page.

Rates as of February 22, 2014

Checking/Savings/Money Market Accounts:

  • Noteworthy Accounts Available Nationwide:
Connexus Credit Union1.15% ($100K) 1.00% ($50K) 0.75% ($20K)MMA - active chk required
EverBank1.10% (6mo intro rate) 0.61% ongoing rateMMA/Checking - account review
SFGI Direct1.01%savings account, account review
First Trade Union Bank1.00% ($2.5K)FT High-Yield Savings, account review
MySavingsDirect1.00%savings account - account review
iGObanking.com1.00% ($100K) 0.75% ($75K) 0.50% ($25K)savings account (no check writing) account review
SmartyPig1.00%savings account - account review
Salem Five Direct1.00%savings, for new customers only
Incredible Bank0.95% ($2.5K min)MMA account review
CIT Bank0.95% ($25K) 0.90% ($100)savings account, account review
Bank5 Connect0.90% (min $100)online savings account (not available for MA and RI residents)
GE Capital Bank0.90%online savings account
Sallie Mae Bank0.90%MMA account review
Union Federal Savings Bank0.90% (min $2.5K)MMA account review
Barclays0.90%Savings account review
Redneck Bank0.90% (up to $35K) 0.50% (over $35K)MMA
AmericaNet Bank0.90% (up to $35K) 0.50% (over $35K)MMA
Evantage Bank0.90% (up to $35K) 0.50% (over $35K)MMA
GE Capital Retail Bank (formerly MetLife)0.90%Savings
Palladian Private Bank0.90% (min $10K)savings account
Ally Bank0.87%savings
Ally Bank0.85%MMA
Discover Bank0.85% (min $500)savings account, account review
American Express Bank0.85%savings account, account review
Colorado Federal Savings Bank0.85% ($2.5K min)savings account, account review
Capital One 3600.85% ($100K) 0.80% ($50K)360 Checking
FNBO Direct0.85%savings account
GE Capital Retail Bank (formerly MetLife)0.85% ($10K)MMA
Mutual of Omaha Bank0.85% (min $25)MMA, account review
Sallie Mae Bank0.80%savings account, account review
MyBankingDirect0.80% (min $5K)MMA
ableBanking0.80% (min $1K)MMA
Bank5 Connect0.76% (min $100)checking account (not available for MA and RI residents)
Bank of Internet USA0.75%MMA
Capital One 3600.75%360 savings account
Nationwide Bank0.71% (min $1K)MMA
Clear Sky Accounts0.70% (max $250K)savings account, account review
Alliant Credit Union0.70% (min $100)savings account, account review
Incredible Bank0.66% ($1K min)checking, account review
Alliant Credit Union0.65%Checking (req's elec. dep & e-stmts) account review

Reward Checking Accounts:

  • Noteworthy Accounts Available Nationwide:
Consumers Credit Union3.09% (up to $5K) 0.20% ($5K-$25K) 0.10% ($25K+)Rewards Checking
INOVA Federal Credit Union3.00% (up to $20K) 0.15% ($20K+)Ovation Checking (not available to PA residents)
Lake Michigan Credit Union3.00% (up to $15K) 0.00% ($15K+)Max Checking
Great Lakes Credit Union3.00% (up to $10K) 0.05% ($10K+)Ultimate Checking
Belvoir FCU2.53% (up to $15K) 0.05% ($15K+)CUXcel Checking
Lee Bank2.50% (up to $15K) 0.50% ($15K+)CACHEChecking
Capital Educators Federal Credit Union2.50% (up to $10K) 0.20% ($10K+)High Yield Checking
Security Bank2.05% (up to $25K) 0.30% ($25K+)Security Bonus Checking
XCEL Federal Credit Union2.01% (up to $15K) 0.30% ($15K+)Kasasa Cash Checking
First American Bank2.00% (up to $15K) 0.15% ($15K+)Everyday Rewards Checking
Redneck Bank2.00% (up to $10K) 0.50% (over $10K)Redneck Rewards Checking
AmericaNet Bank2.00% (up to $10K) 0.50% ($10K+)AmericaNet Rewards Checking
Evantage Bank2.00% (up to $10K) 0.50% ($10K+)Evantage Rewards Checking
ABCO Federal Credit Union1.76% (up to $25K) 0.20% ($25K+)Premiere Checking
Provident Credit Union1.76% (up to $25K) 0.11% ($25K+)Super Reward Checking
Connexus Credit Union1.75% (up to $25K) 0.31% ($25K+)Xtraordinary Checking
First Tech Federal Credit Union1.58% (up to $10K) 0.16% ($10K+)Dividend Rewards Checking
Aspire Federal Credit Union1.51% (up to $10K) 0.25% ($10K+)Kasasa Cash
Community Bank of Raymore1.50% (up to $10K) 0.10% ($10K+)Rewards Checking
Community Bank of Pleasant Hill1.50% (up to $10K) 0.10% ($10K+)Rewards Checking
West Texas National Bank1.26% (up to $25K) 0.25% ($25K+)Ultimate Checking
Heritage Bank1.26% (up to $25K) 0.10% ($25K+)eCentive Account
First New England Federal Credit Union1.25% (up to $15K) 0.10% ($15K+)extra 1% w/relationship
Bank of Blue Valley1.25% (up to $15K) 0.10% ($15K+)$1K/month debit card req (account review)
Bank of Internet USA1.25% (up to $150K) 0.00% ($150K+)Rewards Checking
BankFirst Financial Services1.25% (up to $25K) 0.15% ($25K+)Kasasa Cash
Avidia Bank1.06% (up to $25K) 0.05% ($25K+)eChecking
Legence Bank1.05% (up to $25K) 0.25% ($25K+)Kasasa Cash
North Country Savings Bank1.05% (up to $25K) 0.75% ($25K+)Advantage Checking
State Bank of Toledo1.00% (up to $25K) 0.15% ($25K+)Hometown Rewards Checking

Certificates of Deposit:

Various Deposit Account Deals

Bank Account Alternatives - NOT FDIC Insured

Ally Financial Demand Notes1.35%Ally Demand Notes review
Duke Energy PremierNotes1.25% rate for $50K+Duke Energy PremierNotes review
Ford Interest Advantage1.10% rate for $50k+Ford Interest Advantage review
GE Interest Plus1.05% rate for $50k+
Vanguard Prime Money Market Fund0.01% 7-day yield
Vanguard Tax-Exempt Money Market Fund0.01% 7-day yield
Fidelity Money Market Fund0.01% 7-day yieldreviews on Fatwallet
Fidelity Municipal Money Market Fund0.01% 7-day yield
TIAA-CREF Money Market Fund0.00% 7-day yield

Historical Rates from the Federal Reserve (Federal funds, Treasury bills, CD's)

Anonymous   |     |   Comment #1
The rates will stay low as long as there are deficits run by the democrats in congress and the national debt is huge and still growing. Stop hoping, it is a forlorn hope, who will pay the interest on such debt if the rates go up?
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #2
If the Republicans get in, will rates go up?
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #3
No.  Our national debt is beyond recovery .  Both political parties are equally guilty. 
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #4
Rates will stay low as long as we inhibit economic growth in the name of one cause or another.  It's not rocket science.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #5
There is plenty of economic growth, most of which is overseas to "developing countries".  Multi-national companies are obtaining record profits.   Unfortunately here in the U.S, we are passed our prime.   That is why corporations looked beyond our shorelines for new opportunities.  It's now a "global economy".
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #7
American Express Bank seems to have lowered their rate to 0.80% according to their website.
gregk   |     |   Comment #8
#4 Understanding interest rates may not be rocket science, but still quite a bit more complex than you're willing to admit.  High interest rates are by no means incompatible with low growth.  I'm not going to explain now the dynamics involved in that scenario, but only point out that exactly such a circumstance occurred in the US over some years during the late 1970's, - dubbed "stagflation" by pundits and economists since then.  I've read plausibly argued predictions that this phenomenon may indeed make another appearance in the coming years as a direct result of the interaction of Fed policy with other stubbornly persistent forces in our economy now.  Whether it would be a good thing for savers, however, is debatable. 
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #9
I lived through that period...12.5% mortgage, 15% on short-term CD's and widespread unemployment. Oil, gold and the FED all played a part in returning the economy to a semblance of sanity. Technology leaps paved the way for a truly transformative economy.

Our economic geniuses are hinting that we might see the current 10-year T-rate slowly move from 2.8% to 4% in the next few years. I think yesterday's rate was 2.7%. If this move happens, the average saver might see rates jump from .25% to a whopping .5% or, during a weekly one-time special offer to .60%. Ten-year CD's might hit 4% in a few years but I'm not betting on it. No government on earth wants to raise the cost of borrowing because they are all in debt way past their collective eyeballs. Fiat currency is a spender's dream and a saver's nightmare.            
Hoody   |     |   Comment #10
yup I also lived those years, but no money for any savings as an E-5. I now have savings but rates suck.

 I'm thinking along the same lines as your statement on "a few years", so its why I went for the 7yr 3.1% now, and just wait and see if rates do end up past 4 or 5% in "a few years" at which time I just plan to eat any EWP deduct it from my tax and open another CD. I figured at least I can make a bit more each month than leaving it in 2 or 3 yr CD's and end up rolling them into another one at these rates.

Problem is I'm running into is "time" factor,  at 68 I don't have the time to go long on those CD's as I once did.