Updated May 22, 2022

Best High Yield Savings Accounts

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by the companies mentioned. Opinions expressed here are author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the companies.
Ad Disclosure: This article contains references to products from our partners. We may receive compensation if you apply or shop through links in our content. You help support CreditDonkey by using our links. (read more)

Make your money work harder for you in a high-yield savings account. Here are the top savings accounts to grow your money.

If you're looking for a place to set aside extra money, a savings account is an obvious choice.

But not all savings accounts are created equal. Some savings accounts have pesky monthly fees and rock-bottom interest rates.

Enter high-yield savings accounts.

These typically have no maintenance fees and offer APYs that beat the national average of 0.06%.[1]

Rates across the board aren't as high as they were a few years ago. But high-yield savings accounts still offer some of the top rates available right now.

Featured Offers

Learn more about the best high-yield savings accounts to keep your money safe. Plus find out what to consider when choosing the right savings account for you.

  1. CIT Bank for Active Savers
  2. Axos High Yield Savings
  3. Discover Bank for No Fees
  4. Ally for Customer Service
  5. Nationwide for Checking + Savings
  6. Varo for Best High Rate
  7. Synchrony with ATM Access
  8. Popular Direct for High Balances
  9. Marcus by Goldman Sachs for money management tools

Why Use a High-Yield Savings Account?

A high-yield savings account is perfect for short-term goals. You can grow your money, but still have access when you need it.

Here are some great uses for a high-yield savings account:

Online banks offer rates as much as 8x or more than traditional big banks. That can be a difference of hundreds—or even thousands—of dollars over the years.

Can you lose money in a high-yield savings account?
As long as the bank is FDIC insured, your savings are safe. Even if the bank defaults, the government will pay back what is in your account (up to $250,000). High-yield savings accounts are a very secure place to grow your money.

Top High Yield Savings Accounts

APYMinimum Deposit
CIT Bank Money Market Account0.85%$100
Axos High Yield Savings
  • <$25K 0.61%
  • $25K-$100K - 0.25%
  • >$100K - 0.15%
$250
Discover Bank0.90%
Ally Bank.90%
NationwideRelationship pricing 0.20% / 0.30% (direct deposit of $1K)$100
Varo1.20%, with chance to earn 5.00% APY when you meet requirements
Synchrony Bank0.85%
Popular Direct1.05%$5,000
Marcus1.00%$0

High Interest: CIT Bank

With the CIT Bank Money Market account, what you see is what you get. It offers a high yield without tiers or other gotchas.

Axos High Yield Savings

Axos is a popular online bank with checking, savings, business accounts, loans, and investing services. It's a good choice if you want to do all your banking under one roof.

The minimum to open is $250, but after that, there are no more balance requirements. You can also get a free ATM card.

Best Savings With No Fees: Discover

Discover offers more than just credit cards. They also have checking accounts, savings accounts, money market accounts, and CDs.

Customer Favorite: Ally Bank

Good support is essential when you can't just walk into a bank for help. With a user-friendly interface and live customer service, Ally Bank gets very high satisfaction ratings.

It's a full-service online bank with a wide ATM network, free checking account, multiple CDs, and investment services.

Nationwide My Savings

It pays off to have your checking and savings in one place with Nationwide's My Savings. When you open a My Checking account with a monthly direct deposit of at least $1,000, you'll get an extra high savings APY.

But even if you don't want the checking account, its lower APY is still competitive.

Best High Rate: Varo Savings Account

If you have less than $10,000, Varo offers one of the highest savings APYs currently in the nation. Here's how its tiered rate works:

You get the base rate of 0.50% APY on all balances. Opportunity to earn 5.00% APY if your daily savings balance does not exceed $5,000 AND you make at least 5 Varo debit card purchases per month AND receive at least $1,000 in direct deposits in either the Varo Bank Account or Savings Account.

Even though there are some hoops to jump through, the exceptionally high interest rate could be worth it.

Best Savings With ATM Card: Synchrony

You typically don't want to touch your savings too much, but it's always good to have access if you need it. Synchrony's High-Yield Savings offers an ATM card. You can make up to 6 withdrawals per statement cycle instead of having to wait days for electronic transfers.

Popular Direct's Plus Savings Account offers one of the highest rates. But the minimum opening deposit is a whopping $5,000. If you do that, plus keep a balance of at least $500 each month, you'll get one of the highest APYs available today.

Popular Direct does not offer checking services or an ATM network.

Money Management Tools: Marcus by Goldman Sachs

Marcus is the online savings account from investment giant Goldman Sachs. It offers a very competitive rate with no minimum deposit and no services fees.

The app doesn't support mobile check deposits. Marcus doesn't have checking or an ATM network, either. But you will get smart money management tools to track your spending and savings progress.

Non-Bank Savings Account: Betterment

Betterment, the popular robo-advisor, has expanded its services to include checking and savings. Its Cash Reserve account punches above its weight with:

  • Unlimited withdrawals with no fees
  • Faster transfers between your linked banking account within 1-2 business days
  • FDIC insured up to $1,000,000

Anyone can sign up to be a Betterment customer and open this account without having to use their robo investing services.

Other Popular High-Yield Savings Accounts

These accounts also offer competitive rates to help you reach your savings goal faster:

Fitness Bank Savings Account
Fitness Bank is a lifestyle online bank that rewards you for keeping active. The app tracks your daily walking and running steps. The more steps you get in, the higher APY you earn.

There's a $100 opening deposit and a $10 monthly fee that's waived when you maintain a $100 minimum balance.[2] And yes, Fitness Bank is a legit FDIC insured bank. It's a division of Affinity Bank.

American Express Personal Savings
Their rates are competitive with other high-yield savings accounts. There are no monthly fees and no minimum deposit. However, you must fund your account within 60 days of application approval.

State Farm Money Market
State Farm doesn't just do insurance. They've partnered with U.S. Bank to offer a flexible money market account with a free ATM card and checks.

The minimum opening deposit is $1,000. You need to maintain a $500 daily balance or make 1 direct deposit per month to avoid a service fee.

Investors eAccess Money Market
This is a money market account, but with no ATM access or check writing. However, the interest rate is one of the highest offered on the market.

There's no monthly service fee, opening deposit, or minimum balance requirement, so it's great for slowly building your savings.

What to Look For in a High Yield Savings Account

Things to consider:

  • Minimum opening deposit
  • Balance requirements
  • Monthly service fee
  • APY rate
  • ATM access
  • Other banking services

Required opening deposit
If you're just starting to build your savings, look for an account with no minimum deposit. You can slowly add to it without needing a lot of money up front.

Balance requirements
Some accounts have minimum daily balance or monthly deposit requirements. If you don't meet it, you might not get the highest APY possible.

Monthly service fee
Most of the banks on our list have no monthly service fee. But a couple do require a minimum daily balance in order to avoid a service fee.

APY rate
Look for the highest APY rate on the account with requirements you can satisfy. Higher APY will help you grow your money faster.

A slight difference in APY could make a big difference in how much you save.

Imagine two banks with APYs of 2.20% and 2.40%. If you only have $1,000 to save, that's a difference of just cents over a year. But if you have $50,000, that's a difference of $100 every year.

A high yield savings account is a great spot to keep your emergency fund and to save for short-term goals. The hope is never to need to touch an emergency fund, so at the very least it should earn a competitive yield and generate some interest income.
Cynthia Flannigan, CFP®, MainStreet Financial Planning

ATM access
Not a lot of savings accounts offer ATM access, but there are a few available. You can also look for a money market account to open up your options.

Other banking services
Looking for a checking and savings under one bank? Some online banks only offer savings accounts, so you'll need to choose a full-service bank.

Should I get a CD or Money Market account instead?
A money market account is similar to a savings account. But some offer flexible features like check writing or ATM access. Your funds are more fluid, though you're still limited to 6 withdrawals per month.

A CD requires you to deposit an amount of money for a fixed term. In some cases, it may offer a higher interest rate for your commitment. More on CDs below.

Advantages of a High-Yield Savings Account

A high-yield savings account gives you a safe place to grow your money. Some of the benefits are:

Security
Your deposits are FDIC secured, which means that you're protected (up to $250,000) if the bank defaults.[3]

Guaranteed returns
Unlike investing in stocks or bonds, your savings have reliable returns and no risk. However, the APY can change according to the market—you'll always earn the current advertised rate.

If you want fixed returns, look into Certificates of Deposit instead. You'll need to tie up your money for a certain time, but you'll get a guaranteed fixed rate for the entire term.

Flexibility
You can transfer money in and out to access your savings when you need it. Federal regulation allows up to 6 withdrawals or transfers per statement cycle without penalty.[4]

Effective April 24, 2020, the Federal Reserve Board removed the six-per-month limit on transfers or withdrawals from the "savings deposit" definition in Regulation D. Banks and credit unions are not required to make changes, they may continue to restrict withdrawals.[5]

Do you pay taxes on high yield savings account?[6]
Yes. The interest you earn is treated as income. You will have to report it on your tax return every year. You will be taxed on it at your ordinary income tax bracket.

What Experts Say

CreditDonkey assembled multiple industry experts to answer readers' most pressing questions:

  • Why are people still using traditional banks?
  • Are online banks safe?
  • How do you stay calm during financial stress?

Here's what they said:

High-Yield Savings vs CDs

Unlike high-yield savings accounts, Certificates of Deposit (CDs) require that you tie up your money for a certain term. You can't withdraw your funds before the term ends or you'll face a penalty.

To reward you for tying up your funds, you'll get a guaranteed fixed rate that may be higher than a savings account. CDs tend to be better for those with long-term savings goals (1-10 years).

See our list of the top CD rates.

Is CD laddering a good idea?.
CD laddering is when you divide your deposits into multiple CDs with different rates and maturity dates. For example, your ladder might look like this:

  • $1,000 in a 1-year CD at 2.30%
  • $1,000 in a 3-year CD at 2.70%
  • $1,000 in a 5-year CD at 2.90%

As each CD matures, you can withdraw the funds (plus interest) and re-invest them in a 5-year CD. This is a very smart strategy. This way, every year, you can withdraw money if you need it. And you can always get the best current interest rate.

Bottom Line

A high-yield savings account is one of the best vehicles for growing your money safely. With so many banks competing for your business, there's no reason to stick with a traditional bank's nearly non-existent rates.

Of course, there are some downsides. Online banks don't have physical branches for in-person support. If you need help for any reason, you'll have to contact customer service online or over the phone.

Still, for the higher rates, it's a great alternative to grow your money faster.

Additional Resources

References

  1. ^ FDIC. National Rates and Rate Caps as of January 18, 2022, Retrieved 1/21/2022
  2. ^ Fitness Bank. ^ FDIC. Deposit Insurance, Retrieved 1/21/2022
  3. ^ Federal Reserve Board. Regulation D Reserve Requirements, Retrieved 1/19/2022
  4. ^ Federal Reserve Board. "announces interim final rule to delete the six-per-month limit", Retrieved 1/19/2022
  5. ^ IRS. Topic No. 403 Interest Received, Retrieved 1/21/2022

Donna Tang is the head of purpose and audience at CreditDonkey, a bank comparison and reviews website. Write to Donna Tang at donna.tang@creditdonkey.com. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for our latest posts.

Note: This website is made possible through financial relationships with some of the products and services mentioned on this site. We may receive compensation if you shop through links in our content. You do not have to use our links, but you help support CreditDonkey if you do.

Betterment Cash Reserve ("Cash Reserve") is offered by Betterment LLC. Clients of Betterment LLC participate in Cash Reserve through their brokerage account held at Betterment Securities. Neither Betterment LLC nor any of its affiliates is a bank. Through Cash Reserve, clients' funds are deposited into one or more banks ("Program Banks") where the funds earn a variable interest rate and are eligible for FDIC insurance. Cash Reserve provides Betterment clients with the opportunity to earn interest on cash intended to purchase securities through Betterment LLC and Betterment Securities. Cash Reserve should not be viewed as a long-term investment option.

Funds held in your brokerage accounts are not FDIC-insured but are protected by SIPC. Funds in transit to or from Program Banks are generally not FDIC-insured but are protected by SIPC, except when those funds are held in a sweep account following a deposit or prior to a withdrawal, at which time funds are eligible for FDIC insurance but are not protected by SIPC. See Betterment Client Agreements for further details. Funds deposited into Cash Reserve are eligible for up to $1,000,000.00 (or $2,000,000.00 for joint accounts) of FDIC insurance once the funds reach one or more Program Banks (up to $250,000 for each insurable capacity-e.g., individual or joint-at up to four Program Banks). Even if there are more than four Program Banks, clients will not necessarily have deposits allocated in a manner that will provide FDIC insurance above $1,000,000.00 (or $2,000,000.00 for joint accounts). The FDIC calculates the insurance limits based on all accounts held in the same insurable capacity at a bank, not just cash in Cash Reserve. If clients elect to exclude one or more Program Banks from receiving deposits the amount of FDIC insurance available through Cash Reserve may be lower. Clients are responsible for monitoring their total assets at each Program Bank, including existing deposits held at Program Banks outside of Cash Reserve, to ensure FDIC insurance limits are not exceeded, which could result in some funds being uninsured. For more information on FDIC insurance please visit www.FDIC.gov. Deposits held in Program Banks are not protected by SIPC. For more information see the full terms and conditions and Betterment LLC's Form ADV Part II.

**The annual percentage yield ("APY") on the deposit balances in Betterment Cash Reserve ("Cash Reserve") is 1.10% and represents the weighted average of the APY on deposit balances at the banks participating in Cash Reserve (the "Program Banks") and is current as of June 22, 2022. This APY is variable and subject to change daily. Deposit balances are not allocated equally among the participating Program Banks. A minimum deposit of $10 is required, but there is no minimum balance required to be maintained. The APY available to a customer may be lower if that customer designates a bank or banks as ineligible to receive deposits. APY applies only to Cash Reserve and does not apply to checking accounts held through Betterment Checking. Cash Reserve and Betterment Checking are separate offerings and are not linked accounts.

Read Next:

Best Online Savings Account

Best Online Savings Account

Best Money Market Rates

Best Money Market Rates

Best CD Rates

Best CD Rates

3 Types of Savings Accounts

Types of Savings Accounts

Average Savings Account Interest

Average Savings Account Interest

Money Market vs Savings

Money Market vs Savings

CIT Bank
Member FDIC

Money Market Account - Get a Year of Amazon Prime

Expires 9/23/2022
To get your year of Amazon Prime ($139 cash value):
  • Open a new Money Market account using promo code AMZN22.
  • Fund your account with $15,000 within 15 days.
  • Keep a minimum balance of $15,000 for 60 days.
After 60 days, if you've fulfilled the requirements, CIT will send you an email with your Prime membership code. Existing Amazon Prime members can use the one year of Amazon Prime to renew their membership for an additional year. Limit one Money Market promotion per account and per customer. Conditions apply. See advertiser website for details.

Articles on Best High Yield Savings Accounts

How to Maximize Savings

Saving is a crucial piece of your financial health. Keep reading to learn 7 of the most effective strategies for maximizing your savings.

What is a High Yield Savings Account

Traditional savings accounts don't earn much interest. The best interest rates are with high-yield savings accounts. Learn more about these online accounts below.

Next Page:

About CreditDonkey
CreditDonkey is a bank comparison website. We publish data-driven analysis to help you save money & make savvy decisions.

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed on this page are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer.

†Advertiser Disclosure: Many of the offers that appear on this site are from companies from which CreditDonkey receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). CreditDonkey does not include all companies or all offers that may be available in the marketplace.

*See the card issuer's online application for details about terms and conditions. Reasonable efforts are made to maintain accurate information. However, all information is presented without warranty. When you click on the "Apply Now" button you can review the terms and conditions on the card issuer's website.

CreditDonkey does not know your individual circumstances and provides information for general educational purposes only. CreditDonkey is not a substitute for, and should not be used as, professional legal, credit or financial advice. You should consult your own professional advisors for such advice.

About Us | Reviews | Deals | Tips | Privacy | Do Not Sell My Info | Terms | Contact Us
(888) 483-4925 | 680 East Colorado Blvd, 2nd Floor | Pasadena, CA 91101
© 2022 CreditDonkey Inc. All Rights Reserved.