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Best Bank Account Interest Rates - Summary for July 15, 2014


Best Bank Account Interest Rates - Summary for July 15, 2014

Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen started her two-day testimony before Congress on the economy and monetary policy. In her prepared testimony, she suggested low rates will continue for awhile:

Although the economy continues to improve, the recovery is not yet complete. Even with the recent declines, the unemployment rate remains above Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) participants' estimates of its longer-run normal level.


Inflation has moved up in recent months but remains below the FOMC's 2 percent objective for inflation over the longer run.

The only hope for savers is if the economy improves faster than expected. If that happens, we may see the Fed move to hike rates sooner. According to the Wall Street Journal, Fed Chairwoman Yellen did say today that "rates would rise sooner and more rapidly of the labor market continues to improve faster than expected." However, Yellen and most on the Fed are known to be inflation doves who will side on keeping rates low for longer. Yellen continues to say that "there is no formula or mechanical answer for the timing of first rate increase." So they have leeway to delay rate hikes if they think it’s beneficial for the economy. Unfortunately, they don’t concern themselves about what’s beneficial for savers.

Treasury yields and the Fed fund futures’ probabilities mostly went down over the last week. Below is a summary of the changes. 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: 0.07% up from 0.06% last week
  • 2--year: 0.48% down from 0.52% last week
  • 5--year: 1.65% down from 1.74% last week
  • 10-year: 2.53% down from 2.65% last week
  • 30-year: 3.34% down from 3.47% last week

Fed funds futures' probability of rate hike by:

  • Jan 2015: 9% down from 16% last week
  • Apr 2015: 34% down from 42% last week
  • Jul 2015: 72% down from 77% last week
  • Oct 2015: 93% down from 94% last week

Savings & Checking Account Rates

Last week was another quiet week in the savings and money market accounts that I track below. Just one bank changed its savings account rate. FNBO Direct cut its savings account rate by 10 basis points to 0.75%. FNBO Direct had kept its savings account rate at 0.85% since January 2013.

I decided to add TIAA Direct savings account back. It was excluded for a long time while the bank stopped accepting new customers. Then when the bank opened up the accounts, the rate was too low to be listed. The current rate of 0.80% is still nothing to get excited about, but it’s near the average internet savings account rate. Thus, I decided to put it back. It would be nice if TIAA Direct could repeat what it did when it first launched the internet bank when the savings account yield was 1.25%.

The number of institutions offering a non-promo 1% savings or money market account remains at five. Out of these five, the accounts at Connexus Credit Union and SmartyPig have the longest history of top rates. Note, I exclude EverBank and Salem Five Direct. Only new customers can earn over 1% at these banks.

Reward Checking Accounts

Last week was also a quiet week for the nationally available reward checking accounts. There were no rate changes.

There continues to be six banks and credit unions in my table below offering reward checking yields of 2.00% or above for balances of at least $15,000. Please note that one of these institutions, INOVA Federal Credit Union, has added requirements to its reward checking account that will make it harder to qualify for the high rate.

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 reward checking, please refer to my blog post, 10 Common Traits of High-Yield Reward Checking.

Certificate of Deposit Rates

I’ve gone back to publishing my CD survey as a separate post. Please refer to my survey of the best CD rates. This recap will focus on banking news of the week and liquid accounts.

Best Nationally Available MM, Savings and Checking Accounts


  • TIAA Direct Savings - 0.80%

Rate Hikes:

  • none

Rate/Balance Cap Cuts:

  • FNBO Direct Savings - 0.75% [was 0.85%]

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 July 15, 2014

Checking/Savings/Money Market Accounts:

  • Noteworthy Accounts Available Nationwide:
EverBank1.40% (6mo intro rate) 0.61% ongoing rateMMA/Checking - account review
Connexus Credit Union1.15% ($100K) 1.00% ($50K) 0.75% ($20K)MMA - active chk required
Quorum Federal Credit Union1.05%HighQ Savings Account
SFGI Direct1.01%savings account, account review
MySavingsDirect1.00%savings account - account review
SmartyPig1.00%savings account - account review
Salem Five Direct1.00%savings, for new customers only
Synchrony Bank (formerly GE Capital Retail Bk) 0.95%Savings
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
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
Palladian Private Bank0.90% (min $10K)savings account
iGObanking.com0.90% ($100K) 0.90% ($75K) 0.90% ($25K)New accounts and new money only, account review
Ally Bank0.87%savings
First Trade Union Bank0.85% ($2.5K)FT High-Yield Savings, account review
Union Federal Savings Bank0.85% (min $2.5K)MMA account review
Ally Bank0.85%MMA
Discover Bank0.85% (min $500) savings account, account review
Colorado Federal Savings Bank0.85% ($2.5K min)savings account, account review
Synchrony Bank (formerly GE Capital Retail Bk)0.85%MMA
Mutual of Omaha Bank0.85% (min $25) MMA, account review
TIAA Direct0.80%high yield savings account
FNBO Direct0.75%savings account
Capital One 3600.80% ($100K) 0.75% ($50K)360 Checking
American Express Bank0.80%savings account, account review
Sallie Mae Bank0.80%savings account, account review
Digital Credit Union0.80% ($100K) 0.65% ($50K)MMA
MyBankingDirect0.80% (min $5K) MMA
ableBanking0.80% (min $250) MMA
Discover Bank0.80% (min $100K) 0.70% ($2.5K) MMA, account review
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
Clear Sky Accounts0.70% (max $250K) savings account, account review
Alliant Credit Union0.70% (min $100) savings account, account review
Nationwide Bank0.66% (min $1K) MMA
FNBO Direct0.65%checking account
Alliant Credit Union0.65%Checking (req's elec. dep & e-stmts) account review
Incredible Bank0.59% ($1K min) checking, account review

Reward Checking Accounts:

  • Noteworthy Accounts Available Nationwide:
Consumers Credit Union5.09% (up to $10K) 0.20% ($10K-$25K) 0.10% ($25K+)Rewards Checking - $1K debit card requirements
Consumers Credit Union4.09% (up to $10K) 0.20% ($10K-$25K) 0.10% ($25K+)Rewards Checking - debit and cc requirements
Consumers Credit Union3.09% (up to $10K) 0.20% ($10K-$25K) 0.10% ($25K+)Rewards Checking - debit with NO cc requirements
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
American Bank & Trust2.51% (up to $10K) 0.26% ($10K+)Kasasa Cash
Lee Bank2.50% (up to $15K) 0.50% ($15K+)Kasasa Cash
Capital Educators Federal Credit Union2.50% (up to $10K) 0.20% ($10K+)High Yield Checking
Flanagan State Bank2.25% (up to $10K) 0.25% ($10K+)Kasasa Cash
Security Bank2.05% (up to $15K) 1.00% ($15K-$25K) 0.30% ($25K+)Security Bonus Checking
XCEL Federal Credit Union2.01% (up to $15K) 0.30% ($15K+)Kasasa Cash 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) 0.25% ($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
First American Bank1.50% (up to $15K) 0.15% ($15K+)Everyday Rewards Checking
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
Redneck Bank1.50% (up to $10K) 0.50% (over $10K+)Redneck Rewards Checking
AmericaNet Bank1.50% (up to $10K) 0.50% ($10K+)AmericaNet Rewards Checking
Evantage Bank1.50% (up to $10K) 0.50% ($10K+)Evantage 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
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) 0.37% ($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
First New England Federal Credit Union1.01% (up to $15K) 0.10% ($15K+)extra 1.01% w/relationship

Certificates of Deposit:

Bank Account Alternatives - NOT FDIC Insured

Ally Financial Demand Notes1.25% rate for $50k+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
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

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

Anonymous   |     |   Comment #1
If the FED raises the interest rates, this nation goes broke:
Chose your poison pill, Obama deficits are permanent and not sustainable.
QED   |     |   Comment #8
You'll get no argument or push back from me.  Only thing is, America is already completely broke and running strictly on fumes.  It's an "Emperor has no clothes" situation.

I will concede this:

If interest rates jump, it could be the kill shot that finally puts us out of our misery.  Maybe we could all jump on a train headed for Central America.  I hear there's a lot of space available cheap on the return run!
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #10
I think that is the reality we are facing.  But I don't think running away is the answer.  Let's "bite the bullet" now and declare bankruptcy as a nation.  Sure it may be painful, but if we don't it will be more painful for future generations in time to come.    
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #9
#1, I looked at the curve of the national debt, it seems to me it jumped right after the democrats took control of the senate and the house and when Pelosi was snapping the whip and when Obama joined the party and now with bringing millions of new immigrant and with the already 10s of millions here, the end is near. The democrats never think long term, those illegals here do not contribute not even 10% of what they take and now the kids from Mexico and Latin America will need billions upon billions for long period of time for educations, welfare, health care. housing, I just wonder if they are doing this on purpose to destroy America financially and demographically.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #11
Other nations could not conquer us militarily.  They just needed patients to give us time to destroy ourselves from within.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #14
People who voted and still support the democrats are part of the economical problem too. Instead of this nation to prosper, the democrats and Obama have engaged to destruction of the economy, by printing money to accommodate illegal aliens who are breaking the law.
If you still not believe, please read these:
Have a nice day.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #28
So are everbody else's deficits.  Though Ii would like to blame him the reality is this has been going on for a long time
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #29
#28, what are you trying to say, the democrats are innocent or it is OK to do it if someone else did it before.
Look at the scale of the Obama administration jump, unprecedented before and the worst part is Obama and the democrats want to continue with unlimited deficits, I hope you get that.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #2
Yellen's just repeating her mantra that rates aren't going up until wages rise or perhaps employment improves or, uh, when disenchanted workers return to non-existent jobs or, when inflation rears its ugly head and maybe not then or ever because they have $4,000,000,000,000 on the balance sheet. Rates will only be raised when politically unacceptable inflation rears its ugly head.
paoli2   |     |   Comment #3
Isn't it wonderful to get to enjoy such upbeat news?  Thank goodness I knew better than to put my hopes in Yellen or "anyone" at the Fed!
CapitalClimate   |     |   Comment #4
FWIW, CNBC reported that at least one prominent analyst had moved his estimate of when interest rates would be raised from 2016 to mid 2015.
paoli2   |     |   Comment #5
Well someone needs to tell Yellen to tune into CNBC and redo her mantra.  I like CNBC's better but I won't put any bets on them either. :)
I hate Fort Know FCU
I hate Fort Know FCU   |     |   Comment #6
We are all "Waiting for Godot"...
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #12
CNBC os the loud mouth for the wall street and the democrat's propaganda, I never listen nor believe a word they say.
QED   |     |   Comment #7
In order for the economy to grow, and for people to prosper, Americans need money to spend at their discretion.  Right now we face $18T in current debt and a close to $100T shortfall looking forward.  We must contend with tens of thousands of illegals who were encouraged to enter this country, draining our schools, hospitals, and welfare funds country wide of essential resources, already in short supply before the newcomers showed up.  All this at taxpayers' expense, negatively impacting wealth available for discretionary spending and slicing into American growth potential and national strength.  Earlier this month the MM (mainstream media) trumpeted massive creation of new jobs, without mentioning they were mostly part-time jobs.

Ken wrote:  "The only hope for savers is if the economy improves faster than expected."  While Ken is correct, fact is chances for genuine American economic growth are slim and none . . . and Slim was seen leaving the building!!

I went for the Penfed 3% CDs a while back with some hesitation.  Way things are unfolding, looks like I guessed wrong and should have gone in heavier.  I did Toby, of course, also at 3%.  With current American economic direction the Toby thing is looking OK and might well offer some opportunity in the out years.

Bottom line, as long as King Obama reigns I see no interest rate hikes.  If Bush (i.e., Jeb) or Romney or some other moderate Republican wins in 2016, or if Hillary wins, ditto.  Only way the economy moves would be the (highly unlikely) election of a Conservative in 2016.  So right now those 3% CDs are looking pretty darn good!!
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #13
#7, about voting in 2016, be careful, the democrats are known for stealing elections with double and triple voting, with stuffing the voting boxes with pre-punched ballots for the democrat candidates, illegal aliens and dead people voting and other manipulations.
On election day, just hang around and observe the irregularities and you will realize that the democrats have stolen quite few elections in the past.
Do your job to report and prevent such abuses if you want the election to be fair.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #15
I'm starting to think you are right: Go in the Toby to the tune of about $204,000.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #18
You nailed it, #15, unless of course rates rocket like they have done in the past.
James Barnes
James Barnes   |     |   Comment #19
Right, its a roll of the dice.  But it does not look now like rates will be above 3%  in 7 years. 
lou   |     |   Comment #20
You want to bet?
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #21
Or, we can try the alternative: endlessly renew 1 year CDs at 1%.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #16
The democrats on congress are approving what Obama wants to do and supporting his ideas to destroy this nation. Get read off them in November, this may be our last chance to save this nation. I don't count on the democrat voters, they live in their internal 1960's world and are sworn to die voting for the democrats no matter what (some patriots, ha). Those people are as much of the problem as the rogue Obama.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #22
There's nothing wrong with having Rep and Dem parties.  It's good for the U.S.  The only problem is some of the idiots we currently have in office have their own motives.  They were elected to represent the PEOPLE not themselves.  Cut their pay by 50% and then we'll see who's there to represent us.
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #23
Take a good look at the SOURCE of our nations problems and the inept politicians.  THE PEOPLE WHO VOTED FOR THEM.
QED   |     |   Comment #24
You wrote:  "There's nothing wrong with having Rep and Dem parties."   True enough, but:

Sadly for us, today the Republican and Democrat parties are rapidly becoming the SAME party!!  I concede that's not yet completely true for Republicans at the grass roots.  But it surely is true at the upper levels of the Republican Party.

With increasing frequency grass roots Republicans are rendered powerless by so-called "open" Republican primary elections.  With "open" rules, Democrats are empowered to vote in supposedly Republican primary elections!!!!  This is asinine, it is crazy, and it is happening all across the USA.  When Republican leaders rely on Democrats to win primary elections, they have themselves become Democrats and the two parties have (effectively) merged.

One party rule is not in the least unusual in totalitarian countries.  Heck, it's commonplace.  Think Cuba, China, North Korea, and others.  And what is more totalitarian than a King with a pen and a telephone!!
Anonymous   |     |   Comment #25
#24, I'm not agreeing with you that both parties are becoming "SAME", First, the republicans believe in the constitution 100%, the democrats do not, Republicans want balanced budget, the democrats want unlimited money printing and spending., republicans want secure boarders, democrats want open boarders, republicans want strong dollar, democrats want to debase it, republicans want controlled immigration, the democrats want every single leech on earth to come here and be on welfare,  I can continue with differences for long list, but it will be boring to most democrats reading and not believing in it, therefore, yes, there is a fundamental difference between the republicans and the democrats, you just have to dig dipper and read more real unbiased news (excluding the media).
QED   |     |   Comment #30
Dude, you've been overindulging on the Republican Kool-Aid.  You're living in the past.  What you're thinking was true perhaps as little as twenty years ago.  That was then.  This is now.

Look, I once was a proud Republican . . . a traditional Republican . . Eisenhower . . Reagan.  My entire family was on board.  I still have those same beliefs and concerns.  But I no longer am a Republican.  Today I'm a Conservative.  I didn't leave the Republican Party.  The Republican Party left me.  Then they spit on me and told me I'm a fool.  **** 'em.  **** the entire Republican leadership!!  They are way too close to being Democrats for my liking.  And they are timid, frightened, tongue-tied, unprincipled, cowards.

There remain a few Republicans I respect, BTW.  Those persons are HATED by the fetid Republican leadership!!  Today's Republican Party has no soul.
gregk   |     |   Comment #31
"...you just have to dig dipper (sic) and read more real unbiased news (excluding the media)."

Very good, #25.  We're all able to take that advice by reading your own daily remarks and commentary.  Many thanks for such consistent wisdom and objectivity.