The dismal rate environment for depositors has lingered for over five years now. But there are still financial institutions offering yields of 2% or more on federally-insured liquid deposits (not CDs), according to a new Bankrate.com report.
Bankrate recently surveyed 56 high-yield checking accounts offered by U.S. banks, thrifts and credit unions. The average annual percentage yield for these accounts was 1.57%, nearly twice the average APY offered by the typical five-year certificate of deposit (0.80%) and more than 26 times the average yield offered on standard interest checking accounts (0.06%).
All of the high-yield checking accounts that Bankrate surveyed are federally insured by the FDIC or NCUA. And, of course, unlike a five-year CD, a high-yield checking account is completely liquid.
|Rank||Top High-Yield Checking
Accounts in the U.S
|2||Jeff Davis Bank||N||3.25%||10||$10,000|
|3||Consumers Credit Union||Y||3.09%||12||$10,000|
|4||Ouachita Independent Bank||N||3.01%||12||$15,000|
|T-5||Great Lakes Credit Union||Y||3.00%||10||$10,000|
|T-5||Lake Michigan Credit Union||Y||3.00%||10||$15,000|
|T-8||Bank of the Wichitas||Y||2.50%||10||$10,000|
|10||Cross Keys Bank||Y||2.05%||12||$10,000|
All 56 high-yield checking accounts mandate electronic statements and many require direct deposit. Other typical requirements include a certain number of debit card transactions, online bill payments and/or automated withdrawals each month. The specific details vary by account. Meeting the requirements is very important because the average yield drops to 0.06% if the monthly mandates are not satisfied.
Even if the accountholder meets all of the requirements, the 1.57% average yield applies only to a certain limit, known as the balance cap. The most common balance cap is $25,000, but the highest-yielding accounts tend to have lower balance caps. None of the 15 highest-yielding accounts are available nationwide with a balance cap over $15,000.
Half of the high-yield checking accounts that Bankrate surveyed are available nationwide (including 12% that require a charity contribution, a family member’s credit union membership or an in-branch signature).