CD rates have been high for months, and this week, some of the best CDs are offering 5.5% annual percentage yields or higher. That’s considerably better than the FDIC’s top national average APY of only 1.79% (for one-year CDs). And better yet, you’ll enjoy that high APY no matter where rates go in the future, making your earnings predictable and growing your savings faster.
When you open a CD, the rate is fixed for the CD’s entire term. Common terms range from a few months to a few years, and your earnings are guaranteed for that period even if rates drop. And with some experts predicting rates may soon peak, now is a great time to lock in an APY while rates remain elevated.
Savings and CD rates remain high, but experts recommend comparing rates before opening an account to get the best APY possible. Enter your information below to get CNET’s partners’ best rate for your area.
Today’s best CD rates
Here’s a look at some of the best CD rates available right now and how much you could earn if you deposited $5,000 today.
|Term||Highest APY*||Bank||Estimated earnings|
|6 months||5.55%||Bask Bank||$136.88|
|1 year||5.65%||BMO Alto; Forbright; LendingClub||$290.00|
|3 years||5.10%||BMO Alto||$804.68|
|5 years||5.25%||BMO Alto||$1,457.74|
How long will CD rates stay high?
CD and savings account rates are influenced by the federal funds rate, which determines how much banks charge to lend and borrow money. The Federal Reserve periodically adjusts this rate to stimulate the economy. Banks tend to follow suit, adjusting rates on consumer products like credit cards, personal loans and savings accounts.
The Fed has regularly raised rates since March 2022 to combat persistently high inflation, leading to a steady increase in CD rates. And while the central bank has chosen to pause rate hikes during its last two meetings, CD rates remain high.
Here’s how rates for the top CDs we track at CNET currently compare to average national rates:
|Term||CNET Average APY*||Average FDIC rate|
However, many experts expect CD rates will begin falling mid-2024 -- and potentially sooner depending on the Fed’s next move. As inflation cools and banks begin pumping the brakes on rate increases, some experts predict we’ve already reached the peak of CD rates. That makes now a great time to open a CD and lock in a high APY before rates start dropping. Just this week, for example, Rising Bank lowered its one-year CD by 0.10% and CFG Bank dropped the rates on its one-, three- and five-year CDs by 0.15% each.
Why short-term CDs are worth considering right now
Usually, CDs with longer terms (over one year) have better APYs than short-term CDs (one year and under). A five-year CD -- the longest term most banks offer -- typically offers the best rate since you’re agreeing to keep your money in the account for longer. But in today’s rate environment, short-term CDs, like six-month and one-year terms, are offering higher rates than long-term CDs.
Which term is the best for you? That depends on your savings timeline.
“Short-term CDs are preferable in today’s rate environment for savers seeking flexibility and lower interest rate risk, especially if they require liquidity or anticipate rising rates for future reinvestment,” said William Bevins, CFP, CFTA.
Short-term CDs are ideal for savers who need to access their money sooner than later. Many CDs charge an early withdrawal penalty if you take out funds before the term is up, which can eat into your earnings and negate any benefit from a higher APY.
That said, with CD rates expected to drop in the next several months, a longer term would allow you to stretch high rates further. If you can afford to let your funds sit for more than a year, you’ll earn more on your money.
“Long-term CDs benefit savers with a longer investment horizon aiming to secure current higher rates,” Bevins said. “Especially, if they expect rates to hold steady or decline.”
Ultimately, you should choose a CD term that gives you the right mix between earnings and accessibility.
How to choose the right CD for you
Rates are only one factor to weigh when comparing your CD options. You should also consider:
- How soon you’ll need the funds: Most banks charge a penalty if you take out your funds before the CD term ends. This can chip away at your interest earnings. So, choose a term that fits your savings goals.
- Minimum deposit: Some CDs have no minimum deposit requirement, while others require a certain amount to open an account (typically, $500 to $1,000). This can influence which CD is best for you.
- Monthly fees: Many online banks don’t charge maintenance fees, but be sure to read the fine print for any account you’re considering.
- Federal deposit insurance: Look for an FDIC-insured bank or NCUA-insured credit union. This will protect your savings up to $250,000 per person, per institution if the bank fails.
CNET reviews CD rates based on the latest APY information from issuer websites. We evaluated CD rates from more than 50 banks, credit unions and financial companies. We evaluate CDs based on APYs, product offerings, accessibility and customer service.
The current banks included in CNET’s weekly CD averages are: Alliant Credit Union, Ally Bank, American Express National Bank, Barclays, Bask Bank, Bread Savings, Capital One, CFG Bank, CIT, Fulbright, Marcus by Goldman Sachs, MYSB Direct, Quontic, Rising Bank, Synchrony, EverBank, Popular Bank, First Internet Bank of Indiana, America First Federal Credit Union, CommunityWide Federal Credit Union, Discover, Bethpage, BMO Alto, Limelight Bank, First National Bank of America, Connexus Credit Union.