If you’ve been thinking of opening a certificate of deposit, now’s the time to do it. CD rates have been high for over a year and a half, but many experts predict they’ll start dropping in the next several months.
And while annual percentage yields, or APYs, remain high for the most part, we’ve already begun to see some banks lower their rates. Locking in a high rate now will protect your earnings from additional decreases.
When you open a CD, the rate is fixed for the entire term, even if rates drop during that period. And with some of today’s top CDs boasting APYS of 5.5% or more, you may not find much higher rates if you wait to open an account.
Experts recommend comparing rates before opening a CD 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 are 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||$290.00|
|3 years||5.10%||BMO Alto||$804.68|
|5 years||5.25%||BMO Alto||$1,457.74|
CD rates are beginning to come down
Savers have enjoyed high CD rates since March 2022 as the Federal Reserve has regularly raised the federal funds rate to fight inflation. This rate determines how much it costs banks to borrow and lend money. When the federal funds rate goes up, banks tend to raise their savings and CD rates to attract more customers and increase their cash reserves.
While the Fed opted to pause rate hikes at its last two meetings, CD rates have held high – for the most part. Here’s a look at how they’ve moved since last week:
|Term||CNET Average APY*||Weekly Change**||Average FDIC rate|
|1 year||5.27%||No change||1.79%|
**Percentage increase/decrease from Nov. 6, 2023, to Nov. 13, 2023.
From Nov. 6 to Nov. 13, average APYs increased slightly for six-month, three-year and five-year CD terms. Average one-year-CD rates did not change. But that’s just looking at the overall averages. On a more micro level, we’re beginning to see some banks nudge rates downward, particularly for one-year CDs.
Last week, Rising Bank dropped its one-year CD rate, and CFG Bank lowered rates on its one-, three- and five-year CDs. This week, Rising Bank lowered its one-year rate again, and LendingClub’s one-year CD rate dropped, too.
With inflation trending downward, Rita Soledad Fernández Paulino, a personal finance coach and founder of Wealth Para Todos, expects the Fed will begin lowering rates at some point next year, which means “banks can lend each other money for less interest. Therefore, they don’t need to be relying on consumer savings and can pay consumers less interest for keeping money in CDs.”
So, if you’ve been considering opening a CD, you may want to act soon while you can still secure a high APY.
Shopping around can net you even more
We track top banks to compile our CNET average, but you can find banks offering even higher rates for less common CD terms. However, you may need to meet stricter requirements to get these rates.
For example, Bernadette Joy, a personal finance coach and CNET Financial Review Board member, recently locked in a 6.15% APY on an 11-month CD from Truliant Federal Credit Union. But this CD required a $5,000 minimum deposit, which could be prohibitive for some savers. Many of the CDs on our list here require a minimum deposit of $1,000 or less.
You can earn even more with a special 12-month share certificate -- a savings option similar to a CD that’s offered by credit unions -- from Bayer Heritage Federal Credit Union. This certificate offers 6.183% APY if you open it by November 30, 2023. But you must be a member of the credit union to qualify, and membership is only available in specific areas in Ohio, South Carolina, Texas and West Virginia.
It’s important to read the fine print for any CD you’re considering to make sure a high rate is worth any potential tradeoffs. If you think you’ll need your funds before the term is up, for instance, you could incur an early withdrawal penalty that negates the benefits of a higher APY.
How to choose the right CD for you
APY is an important factor when comparing CD accounts, but it’s not the only one. You should also consider:
- How soon you’ll need the funds: Most banks charge a penalty if you withdraw money before the CD matures. This can eat into your interest earnings. So, be sure to choose a term that fits your savings needs.
- Minimum deposit: Some CDs require a certain amount to open an account -- typically, $500 to $1,000 -- while others have no minimum deposit requirement. This can narrow down your choices.
- Monthly fees: Fees can erode your balance. Many online banks don’t charge maintenance fees. They have lower overhead costs than banks with physical branches, and they pass these savings down to consumers through higher rates and fewer fees. Still, be sure to read the fine print for any account you’re considering.
- Federal deposit insurance: Accounts with FDIC-insured banks or NCUA-insured credit unions are protected up to $250,000 per person, per institution if the bank fails. Confirm that any institution you’re considering is an FDIC or NCUA member to ensure your money is safe.
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.