The cornerstone of any good financial system starts with finding a savings account that works for you.
The best savings accounts offer high-yield interest rates and don’t require you to maintain a huge minimum balance to avoid fees.
How do you find a good savings account? Look to online banks.
My first online savings account was with a little-known Dutch bank, ING (which is an acronym for Internationale Nederlanden Groep, recently acquired by Capital One). Everyone was skeptical about online banking back then.
Today, online savings accounts are common. The interest rates are much higher than brick and mortar banks. The services are far easier to use.
Below, we have a a list of online savings accounts with the highest interest rates. They are all FDIC insured. They are as safe as a ‘regular’ bank except they pay way more in interest. You can confirm that by searching the FDIC’s Bank Find tool and confirming the FDIC numbers listed.
These banks are presented in no particular order, but all provide value in terms of helping you build a strong financial foundation.
State Exchange Bank – 3.60% APY
State Exchange Bank is a locally owned independent community bank that offers a 3.60% APY on their high yield savings account right now. They are based out of Salt Fork, Oklahoma and have been in business since 1901.
State Exchange Bank is FDIC insured and powered by the SaveBetter platform so you can be assured your money is safe there.
Table of Contents
- Blue FCU – 4.00% APY
- CIT Bank — 3.60% APY
- Barclays Bank — 3.00% APY
- Discover Bank — 3.00% APY + $150 or $200
- Marcus by Goldman Sachs — 3.00% APY
- Ally Bank — 2.75% APY
- Capital One 360 Performance Savings – 3.00% APY
- American Express® Personal Savings — 3.00% APY
- Alliant Credit Union — 2.25% APY
- Chime – 2.00% APY
- Common Questions about Online Savings Accounts
The content on this page is accurate as of the posting date; however, some of the offers mentioned may have expired or changed.
If you are simply looking for the highest yield, you may want to consider no penalty CDs right now. The yields there can be much higher and you get the flexibility of withdrawals anytime.
Blue FCU – 4.00% APY
Blue Federal Credit Union is a credit union that is currently offering a high interest rate of 4.00% APY on their money market deposit account. This is not technically a “savings account” because it’s at a federal credit union but rather a money market deposit account, but for all practical purposes it serves the same function.
Since it is a credit union, your funds are protected by NCUA deposit insurance and not FDIC insurance. It is also offered through the SaveBetter platform.
CIT Bank — 3.60% APY
CIT Bank is a division of First-Citizens Bank & Trust Company (FDIC #11063). It is their online bank division and it offers every deposit product conceivable, from online savings to money market to no-penalty CDs. They have low minimums, no monthly service fees, and some of the highest yields available.
Their “Savings Connect” account is their savings account product and pays an interest rate of 3.60% APY on all balances. The minimum to open the account is just $100 and there are no fees to maintain it.
Barclays Bank — 3.00% APY
Barclays is a British based international banking corporation and the online bank is part of their US subsidiary, Barclays Bank located in Delaware (FDIC #57203).
Their online savings account product has a competitive interest rate, no minimum balance to open, and to earn interest you need to keep enough such that the interest rate earns you a penny each period (so you won’t earn fractional interest, this is typical).
Barclay’s has a competitive lineup of Certificates of Deposits too, with terms as short as 3-months and up to 60 months. The rates are competitive with other online banks.
Discover Bank — 3.00% APY + $150 or $200
Discover, the credit card folks, also have an online bank!
Discover Bank (FDIC #5649) may not be a familiar name to you but they’ve been actively insured by the FDIC since 1934!
Their savings account has one of the highest interest rates, no maintenance fees, and no minimum balance.
The checking account also has no minimum balance, access to over 60,000 ATMs in the ATM network, plus a generous reward structure. You can earn 1% cash back on up to $3,000 in debit card purchases each month, pay a bill online, or write a check that clears (up to 100 such cashback transactions a month)
Sometimes, Discover Bank will offer a cash bonus for this account. This Discover Bank promotion page will list any offers we know about but the current offer is this:
To get your $150 or $200 Bonus: What to do: Apply for your first Discover Online Savings Account, online, in the Discover App or by phone. Enter Offer Code WH922 when applying. Deposit into your account a total of at least $15,000 to earn a $150 Bonus or deposit a total of at least $25,000 to earn a $200 Bonus. Deposit must be posted to account within 30 days of account open date. Maximum bonus eligibility is $200.
What to know: Offer not valid for existing or prior Discover savings customers or existing or prior customers with savings accounts that are co-branded, or affinity accounts provided by Discover. Eligibility is based on primary account owner. Account must be open when bonus is credited. Bonus will be credited to the account within 30 days of the account qualifying for the bonus. Bonus is interest and subject to reporting on Form 1099-INT. Offer ends 12/15/2022 , 11:59 PM ET. Offer may be modified or withdrawn without notice.
(click here for our in-depth review of Discover Online Savings Bank)
Marcus by Goldman Sachs — 3.00% APY
Marcus by Goldman Sachs (FDIC #33124) is the online bank of Goldman Sachs, most well known as an investment banking firm. They do quite more than that and Marcus by Goldman Sachs handles their online bank offerings.
They currently have some of the highest interest rates for savings accounts and they have no minimum deposits and no transaction fees (there do not appear to be maintenance fees either). They were named the Best Stand-Alone Account for Savings by MONEY® Magazine ‘Best Banks’ 2016 issue, for whatever that’s worth.
Here’s a full review of Marcus by Goldman Sachs to give you a full scope understanding of their offer.
Ally Bank — 2.75% APY
Ally Bank (FDIC #57803) is the online bank I use (I consider them the best online bank, which is why I use them) and I’ve been a fan of theirs for years. I opened my account shortly after they rebranded from GMAC (General Motors Acceptance Corporation) in the late 2000s.
Their savings account has a solid interest rate, no maintenance fees, and no minimum balance.
Their CD rates are also competitive, the early termination period is only 60 days on a short-term CD (versus the more typical 90 days), and they often give you an interest rate bonus if you roll your maturing CD into a new one.
They offer a free checking account with no minimum balance, they refund up to $10 in ATM fees each statement, have a large ATM network, and they have a competitive interest rate on the checking account too.
Their app is solid too. It has all of the typical bells and whistles plus a great remote deposit feature for when you have checks to deposit. If you need to deposit checks and don’t want to use the app, there are postage-paid deposit envelopes for you to use too (absolutely free).
(read our full review of Ally Bank)
Capital One 360 Performance Savings – 3.00% APY
I’ve had a Capital One 360 Performance Savings account ever since it was an ING Direct account – a testament to how good of a bank I think they are. I liked how easy it was to open new accounts and manage my money there – plus it offers a competitive interest rate. Sometimes, we list Discover higher because you get a similar rate plus some bonus cash (when a promotion is available) but Performance Savings is comparable.
Capital One 360 has the added bonus of being part of Capital One, which makes management of your bank account easy if you already have Capital One credit cards. I enjoy having a lot of different services under one login because it’s just easier to manage.
Another added bonus is that CapitalOne often offers a bonus on new accounts.
American Express® Personal Savings — 3.00% APY
You are probably more familiar with their credit cards than their savings account but American Express National Bank (FDIC #27471) has been in business since 2000, when American Express sold their previous banking division to Standard Chartered.
American Express® Personal Savings is their high yield savings product. They also have certificates of deposit as well but they do not have a checking account, you are permitted to link up to three of those from external banks.
Alliant Credit Union — 2.25% APY
Alliant Credit Union is the only credit union on this list and they are NCUA insured (NCUA is the equivalent of the FDIC for credit unions, same protections and same amounts – NCUA #67955).
The account minimum to open is $5 (but they will give you $5 to open an account!). The interest rate is available if you have $100 or more in your account and there are no maintenance fees if you elect e-statements (many of the online banks do not even offer paper statements, so this is not a huge distinction). They have 80,000+ ATMs in their network.
The same terms exist for their checking account too but their interest rate on the checking account is slightly higher than many others. There is no minimum balance required on the checking account and you can get $20 in ATM surcharge refunds per month.
Why bother including a credit union? Because this credit union offers two remarkable products – a Kid’s Savings Account and a Free Teen Checking Account. They are joint accounts with perks to help teach your kids responsible money habits – a fantastic idea.
Chime – 2.00% APY
Chime is a part of a banking phenomenon known as “neobanks,” or fintech companies that are marrying traditional banking services with a more modern “tech-focused” approach to banking. They offer a mobile app that can help you manage your transactions, including alerts anytime your debit card is used, as well as the ability to pay your friends easily. If you get your paycheck direct deposited, you get access to it two days earlier than at a traditional bank.
They offer a checking account (called a Spending Account) that comes with a debit card. No monthly fees or maintenance fees with this account. There is also a savings account (called a Savings Account) that pays you 2.00% APY and has automatic savings functionality (like roundup transfers), should you want it. Again, no minimum balances required.
Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by The Bancorp Bank, N.A. or Stride Bank, N.A., Members FDIC. The Chime Visa® Debit Card is issued by The Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc. and may be used everywhere Visa debit cards are accepted. Please see back of your Card for its issuing bank.
Common Questions about Online Savings Accounts
Here are a few questions I get asked a lot when it comes to these online savings accounts.
Online savings accounts are just like regular savings accounts. The big difference is that many of the banks that offer online savings accounts don’t have physical locations you can visit. Your main point of contact is through an app or online banking.
Many of the banks also offer online checking accounts that work just like regular checking accounts. The app will usually let you deposit checks by taking a picture of the front and back. You can access your money through a regular ATM and many banks have partnerships with national ATM networks like Allpoint.
If online savings accounts are just like savings accounts without physical locations, what’s the benefit of getting an online savings account? They have much higher interest rates. If you ever look at the interest rate of a regular bank, it’s usually ridiculously low.
For example, as of this writing, the interest rate at Bank of America’s savings account is 0.01% APY. It’s basically zero and it has been for a long time. Ally Bank’s interest rate is 2.75% APY.
Online banks tend to have much lower fees too. Ally Bank doesn’t have a maintenance fee and no minimum balance. Bank of America’s Core Checking has a $12 monthly fee that is waived if you maintain a balance of $1,500 or have a qualifying direct deposit of $250+.
Yes, 100% safe. Online banks are FDIC insured and so your money is as safe in those banks as they would be in a traditional bank. Your funds are protected up to $250,000 by the FDIC. If the bank fails, the FDIC will get you your money back.
As for protection against fraud, they often have security precautions in place to prevent many of the different types of fraud. Many banks offer two-factor authentication, to confirm your identity, as well as plenty of notifications. You can set up your bank to notify you every time there is a transaction, a service not many banks offer.
There is no limit to how many savings accounts you can have but you will receive a Form 1099-INT from every bank that pays you more than $10 in interest. You may not want to deal with so many forms when it comes time to do your taxes!