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Online Savings & Money Market Account Rates 2022

Highest Online Bank Rates for Savings And Money Market Accounts - January 16, 2022

Savings Account National Average Rate: 0.10% ?

 

I’ve previously espoused the belief that banks need to be given time to formulate a response to the current climate crisis.   After COP26 in Glasgow, it is clear that the costs of wind and solar are falling and production advances in both are happening so quickly, I no longer believe that banks need to be extended the benefit of an extended period to (...read more in the Recent Articles section below the rate table).

ONLINE BANKS APY? MIN?

| Oct 26, 2021

Not the easiest process and you really need to think twice before joining a credit union to make a little more on your cash. For me it was worthwhile and Cathy was super helpful.

| Jan 15, 2022

It would be insanity to lock into a 1-year CD at 0.85 with this "bank" when they are paying 0.75% on a savings account and the Fed is going to hike to at least 1% by the middle of the year (and both CD and...

| Dec 28, 2021

It was not the easiest set up but I am glad I have enjoyed making much more on my online savings account through this bank this past year.

| Jan 3, 2022

Perfect credit and I was denied opening an account with NO explanation. Is this bank legitimate or some sort of scam? Read More

| Dec 6, 2021

Works fine, but I wish interest were credited monthly and not quarterly.

| Jan 10, 2022

Opened for the higher rate. Somewhat tricky to get the account opened, and I am disappointed to learn that albeit a Massachusetts bank it does not do DIY so cannot deposit over 1/4 mil.

| Jun 21, 2021

Bad experiences with this bank and maturing CD's. I wanted the funds returned to my external bank and not rolled over into another CD. After several phone calls, and messages sent through their secure mess... Read More

External transfers are limited to $30,000 per week.

| Dec 16, 2021

This is the one. I've been a customer for many years. Never a problem. Great service. Rates are always consistently among the best. No need to constantly move. Read More

| Dec 21, 2021

I can positively state that poor customer service is the reason why businesses sink. Pentagon Federal online media agent is limited and most times useless. The wait time on the telephone to be asked nam...

| Oct 27, 2021

I joined this bank and went through the process of applying for a HELOC. Everything seemed to be going well with only the paperwork needing to be signed and when I contacted them about having a POA and the...

| Nov 9, 2021

Quirky website and lousy rate, but this is where we are what you need to do to avoid the zero-point-zero-one. Read More

Requires download of bank app and recording of over 12,500 average daily steps (or 10,000 if over age of 65). Inbound transfers are limited to $2,500/week and take 4 days.

| Jan 7, 2022

lots of problems with the step tracker and the app over the last year, but the account remains rate competitive for those who can reliably track the steps through their device or watch. Read More

| Sep 1, 2021

Had to apply 3x before finally being approved, was told to fund through a branch so it isn't really an online account (although it can be funded externally). Rate is attractive, but there are other banks w... Read More

| Jan 7, 2022

Whatever you are gaining by having this account (0.05% over Ally or Marcus) you are losing when they take a week to make a simple bank transfer. Read More

| Oct 13, 2021

Good for savers. Easy to transfer funds in and out, not paying high transaction processing $ or being limited to low amounts per day. Does not subject applicants to very much ID interrogation and apparent... Read More

| Jan 15, 2022

I've done some work with these guys. This is a New Jersey-based bitcoin ponzi scheme run by a bunch of 30-something Wall Street throw aways. If you must chase 51 bps, I suggest you do it somewhere else.

| Jul 9, 2021

"Vio" application process is defective, I used to work on bank security so truthfully responded. Requires documentation which I sent in at length and then got denied because of unknown reasons. Have excell... Read More

| Dec 31, 2020

I’ve filed a complaint with the FDIC. This bank keeps rearranging my transactions, even if they’ve posted and are not pending. They also will deny a transaction and charge a non sufficient funds fee ... Read More

| Jun 21, 2021

Bad experiences with this bank and maturing CD's. I wanted the funds returned to my external bank and not rolled over into another CD. After several phone calls, and messages sent through their secure mess... Read More

| Jul 15, 2021

I finally closed my account. Was great back in the day as everbank but now it is a joke in every way. Read More

| Aug 3, 2020

There is a lot to like about this account. American Express is a real organization and you are not playing with a bunch of amateurs like with a lot of these banks. However, they will be sure to lower the ... Read More

| Nov 8, 2021

As of 11/03/2021 online savings rate increased to 0.50%

| Nov 6, 2021

Website agonizingly SLOOOOOWWW. Only 3 linked external accounts allowed.

| Feb 28, 2021

ACH transfers limited to $3,000, unsecured website, emailing acct numbers, hours to reach customer service. Need not say more.

| Nov 5, 2021

I opened an interest checking account with Ally after reading all the glowing comments online. My first experience with Ally was anything but glowing. The customer rep tried to charge me $15 for a debit ca... Read More

| Nov 13, 2021

Rate is not unattractive in this environment but I will wait until January or February and see where things are then.

| Nov 12, 2020

Rate has remained competitive and they are easy to work with.

| Jul 15, 2021

Marcus is the very best online banking experience that I have ever had. Read More

| Jan 23, 2021

In terms of service, you cannot do anything online. On every other bank, you can message someone online and get a quick response. You need to call Synchrony and speak with someone in the Philippines. N... Read More

| Apr 22, 2015

Hello, I am interested in a line of credit against my home. I have a high interest credit card that I want to move to this credit. I have a wells fargo mortgage which is only a few years old which I do no...

New money only. External transfers limited to $10,000 per week.

| Apr 23, 2021

AVOID, INSECURE,IRRITATING. Application for SAVINGS and no credit. Invasive personal information. PHOTO of driver license--no scanning into "secure" application. It did not like original Photo, so was req...

| Aug 25, 2020

Bank is owned by a Florida bank and yet I wasn't able to open an account because I live in Florida. Go figure! Read More

| Jun 1, 2021

Update: STAY AWAY FROM THIS BANK! They have no clue how to run an online bank. This bank is not ready for prime time. Nothing but problems. Customer service is dismal at best.

| Feb 7, 2021

I cannot comment on Bankdirect, but I can comment on the Bask Bank subsidiary. Opening this account to earn AAdvantage miles is the best move I've made in years! I am getting 100,000 frequent flier miles... Read More

New account holders only. External transfers are limited to $5,000 per day.

| Jan 3, 2021

This is the worst online banking I have seen. Without any warning they restricted access to withdrawals to $1000. Representative said they implemented on ALL accounts for ALL customers due to “fraud”... Read More

External transfers are limited to $5,000 per day.

| Nov 18, 2017

This is a decent account until you need to withdraw something and then it is hell on wheels. Read More

| Nov 18, 2020

I've been very pleased over the first six months - now feel cheated by silent .05% drops. How difficult is it to send a blast email notifying customers as a courtesy?

| Apr 30, 2019

No issues. I feel confident using them. Read More

| Jun 20, 2018

Their website says the offer is going away tomorrow at 9AM EST. Hurry! Read More

| Jul 21, 2020

Opened account a month ago. I've already seen the rate fall a couple of times, but have no other complaints. Easy process and a clear easy to use site (unlike Ally where I was before). Read More

Zions Bank

0.45%

$1,000

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| Aug 13, 2021

Very pleased with the no penalty cd which locks in a rate for 15 months and is always .10% above the savings rate. Read More

Rate available for new accounts only.

| Apr 10, 2021

I opened an account a couple of years ago and had a dreadful experience. I saw two weeks ago that the rate was better than at Citizens so I closed that account for this one. I cannot access my money now or... Read More

Amboy Direct

0.45%

$30,000

Learn More

| Aug 10, 2019

I did not appreciate getting pulled into the 2.53% offer on $100k only to have the rate lowered by the time I finally got the money in.

Norwood Bank

0.45%

$100,000

Learn More

| Dec 5, 2020

I know rates are variable, at their discretion*, but in the time frame of 9 months their rates have dropped to 1/3 of what they were ! is that what some call a teaser rate in the beginning ??? Read More

| Sep 14, 2020

two thumbs up Read More

Freedom Bank

0.40%

$0

Learn More

| Jul 17, 2021

I've been with this bank for 6 months and have not had any problems. Bill pay works good. The 24 month investing CD is another vechile I use. Rates are above average considering the national rate. I'd reco... Read More

Bank charges ACH transfer fees and routinely lowers rates for existing customers below those advertised.

| Dec 8, 2020

Everyone here in Boston raves about Salem Five but it is shithole operation filled with nasty entitled people. As for this online savings product, the fees are ridiculous, the transfer charges are obnoxiou... Read More

Inbound transfers limited to $25,000/day and $100,000/month.

| Mar 25, 2021

Completely excessive number of customer service phone calls after setting up account. Well meaning, but over the top.

| Oct 28, 2021

The website is easy to use. The savings rates for an online bank are terrible. Read More

| Dec 8, 2021

Marcus (GS) and Barclay high yield savings both 0.50%. Read More

| May 21, 2021

avoid this Read More

CNB Bank Direct

0.39%

$25,000

Learn More

| May 10, 2021

Dollar Savings Direct is as close as anything gets to a scam without being labeled a scam. CDs renewing below market rates at no notice. Savings rates going above market levels and then way below (again no... Read More

| Mar 14, 2018

Poor service. Condescending attitude. Savings application denied without giving reason (Equifax file had a freeze because of hacking history) and not advising customer of need to unfreeze credit file for a... Read More

| Mar 10, 2021

Northpointe -- my most favorite bank -- held their rate when others dropped -- nice people to deal with -- and -- COURAGE + INTEGRITY.

CNB Bank Direct

0.26%

$100

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| Dec 28, 2021

I made a deposit and issued a check which arrived and they bounced it although they claimed the deposit cleared which left us spending Christmas pennyless. We depended on that money to buy ourselves food ... Read More

| Nov 18, 2017

This is a decent account until you need to withdraw something and then it is hell on wheels. Read More

| Apr 8, 2019

Their online interface is circa 2004. They limit the number of accounts you can set up for ACH. And they sit on ACH transfers.... for days. Not sure if the good rates are worth it. Read More

| Sep 17, 2020

It is a complete game between MySavings, DollarSavings and Emigrant. Some days one has a competitive rate, the next day the rate on that one has dropped to zero and it is one of the other brands that has... Read More

New money only.

| Sep 6, 2019

Went to bank yesterday this is not a good rate. Needs to be updated. Read More

| Aug 13, 2019

I filled out the application 10 days ago answering all questions and sent a file with a copy of my drivers license to Western Bank. I received an email saying that a banker would call me within one busines...

| May 5, 2020

If I have to encash a fixed deposit in NYCB which has became inactive, without visiting the bank physically, is there reactivation compulsory. If yes how many USD will be required to deposit and which bank... Read More

| Mar 25, 2020

I was told on the phone by a bank rep that my present money market acct interest rate would continue at 2.25% until June 30, 2020 and would be FDIC covered up to $250,000. Please verify if this is true???...

| Nov 2, 2020

Got the account opened after weeks and finally got it funded and then they dropped the rate the next day and it is no longer competitive.

| Jan 4, 2020

Be aware, when cd comes due, they mail a check to your home which takes 7-10 business days. That is a long time to have money not drawing any interest. Read More

| Nov 2, 2020

Got the account opened after weeks and finally got it funded and then they dropped the rate the next day and it is no longer competitive.

Promotional rate for new depositors only. Prior depositors may receive a lower rate.

| Apr 14, 2020

I call HSBC they told me they don't have 1.85 1 year CD. current CD is 0.8 / year Read More

| Jul 28, 2020

Dropped rates again with restrictive transfer limits and poor service. Better rates and liquidity elsewhere. Beware!!! Read More

OneWest Bank, a division of First-Citizens Bank and Trust

0.15%

$100,000

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Rate not available in all states.

| Aug 7, 2020

Had a car loan with them. Paid it off because I was selling the vehicle. They told me it would take 10 business days to clear the transaction (it was immediate via electronic) and was out of my account th... Read More

| Apr 18, 2018

Worst experience of my life. Did not fund and gave $25 to my own charity. Read More

| May 26, 2017

Before009 Read More

| Feb 12, 2020

WILL YOU CASH MY EE SAVINGS BONDS? PLEASE ADVSE.

| Sep 8, 2019

Opened an account and did $1000 for my initial deposit. If your balance averages below $1000 they charge you $10 a month. ETrade withdrew the $1000 from my checking account then, without reason, abruptly...

New Dominion Direct

0.05%

$100,000

Learn More

Edu Federal Credit Union

Restrictions

0.01%

$1

Learn More
All rates listed are Annual Percentage Yield (APY). The APY rate in a savings account or money market account is a variable rate that is subject to change at any point. The Min listed is the minimum deposit account balance required to obtain the rate listed.

Best Online Savings Account Rates

Finding the best high interest online savings or money market account is a highly subjective exercise. The best account for your neighbor may not be the best account for you. To help you determine which account is best for you, we have created the following 7 point checklist:
  • A competitive interest rate. BestCashCow maintains the most comprehensive list of deposit account rates. The rates above are the best available rates for online savings accounts. In order to ensure that your money continues to grow over time, you may wish to avoid banks which rely heavily on very short term promotional rates (such as EverBank). If you open an account with a promotional rate or even if you open an account where the rate isn’t promotional in nature, you should check back with BestCashCow regularly to be sure that your bank continues to offer one of the most competitive rates.
  • Full functionality through online and mobile access. Most of the accounts listed above have robust websites and mobile access that enables full functionality. Read the comments from other users before opening an account as they often highlight problems with access.
  • Assess how the bank provides customer service. Many of the leading online banks now have customer service representatives who are U.S. based and available 24/7 with low wait times. This is often a distinguishing feature that makes a well-recognized bank significantly more attractive than a smaller bank trying to enter the online banking arena.
  • Absence of fees. Be sure that you are opening an online account with a bank that doesn’t charge fees and has very low minimum balance requirements. American Express, CIT, GS Bank, Barclays and Ally are all well known for low minimum requirements and the absence of any unusual monthly fees.
  • Easy Access to your Cash through Immediate Online Transfers. The reason why you keep money in savings is for access in an emergency or to take advantage of immediate financial opportunities. You need access to your cash. Yet, some banks impose strict limits on the amount of cash that you can access from your account in a single transfer or limit the numbers of transfers you can conduct over a given time period. Other banks can delay your transfers for days while they make money on the float. You should check with the bank where you are considering opening an online account to understand the restrictions before you open an account. You may also read the comments from other users above as they can highlight which banks enable the best access to your cash.
  • Stay within FDIC limits! See the section above and read this article.
  • Use the BestCashCow Savings Calculator to see how important it is to be maximizing your interest on savings accounts over time.

Expert Reviews of Well-Known Online Banks, January 2022


Online Savings - 0.50% APY, $1 minimum


Great for: Competitive CD Rates with no transaction fees ever.

Overview: Marcus is the online bank of Goldman Sachs. Throughout 2018, it consistently offered one of the highest online savings rates, but it has been quick to lower its savings and CD rates in 2019 and 2020. Marcus has a highly rated mobile app.

Highlights: Marcus is very highly rated in customer reviews on BestCashCow. Users cite the consistently high savings rates, lightening fast ACH transfers, the ease of web access, strong customer service and the absence of any fees ever.

What to watch for: Marcus has been quicker than many competitors to lower its savings rate. No ATM access.


Online Savings – 0.40% APY, $5,000 minimum


Great For: High Savings and CD Rates with no transaction fees ever

Overview: Citizens Access is a relatively new entrant in the online banking space, but is a subsidiary of Citizens Bank, one the largest, oldest and most well established US banking institutions.

Highlights: Citizens Access never charges any monthly fees. Its user reviews on BestCashCow have been outstanding. It was ahead of the curve in increasing its savings rates in anticipation of each Federal funds rate increase in 2018, although it may not be as competitive as interest rates in 2021 and 2022. Citizens Access also allows customers to set up online savings and CD accounts in the name of a personal trust (this remains rare among online banks).

What to watch for: Citizens Access was quick to drop its online savings rate in 2020. Its CD offerings, including its No Penalty CD products, have gone from compelling to particularly weak. All Citizens Access savings and CD products require a $5,000 minimum balance.


Online Savings Account – 0.50% APY, no minimum


Great For: Sometimes competitive savings rates and No Penalty CD rates with 24/7 Customer Service

Overview: Ally’s strong advertising campaigns and name recognition has made it one of the most recognized online banks. Until 2019, the savings rate was competitive. The bank also offers competitive CD products (with modest early withdrawal penalties) and no penalty CDs (with no early withdrawal penalties).

Highlights: BestCashCow user reviews cite a strong mobile app and the ease of getting into and out of No Penalty CD products. Ally often offers new and existing users a 1% cash promotion for bringing new deposits, and regularly gives existing depositors a 5 basis point step up for renewing CDs and No Penalty CDs.

What to watch for: Ally is the former GMAC Bank, having been spun out following the 2009 financial crisis, and may continue to have significant exposure to used automobile loans. Depositors should therefore be especially cautious as we roll through the COVID-19 pandemic and should always maintain their deposit balances within FDIC limits. In addition, some customers complain about waiting hours to reach customer service by phone at all hours. Others have expressed frustration about being inundated by Ally's nonstop cross-selling of auto loan, personal loan, credit card and online trading products.


Money Market – 0.45% APY, $100 Minimum


Great For: Competitive savings rates, great customer service

Overview: CIT Bank is a nationwide direct bank and is a division of CIT Bank, N.A., a large financial institution focused on equipment leasing that required a financial bail out from the federal government in 2009. The bank was an early entrant into the online banking space, and offered competitive savings and CD products to US customers through the internet for many years. In 2020, it has matched the savings and money market rates of other well known online banks.

Highlights: User reviews left on BestCashCow’s savings table are consistently strong with users highlighting strong and responsive customer service by phone when necessary.

What to watch for: CIT's website lacks some of the functionality that you will find on other leading online banking interfaces and seems more like 2011 than 2021. For example, it isn't possible to designate whether you want a CD to renew or to be transferred to another account until after the CD has matured. Additionally, some have reported experiencing significant delays with both inbound and outbound transfers (during which time CIT makes the interest and not you). Also, CIT now owns OneWest Bank and those with accounts at both banks should add their deposits together to be sure they do not exceed FDIC coverage.


High Yield Savings – 0.50% APY, no minimum


Great For: Stronger CD rates than many other well-known online banks.

Overview: Synchrony Bank is the former GE Capital Retail Bank that has now been spun off completely into its own institution. In the past, Synchrony offered competitive online savings and CD rates, but it is no longer competitive. Even though Synchrony is an entirely independent entity now and should not have exposure to GE's troubles, there may still be hidden exposure and depositors should remain well within FDIC insurance limits.

Highlights: Online savings accounts can be opened for IRAs and trust accounts (which is ordinarily not possible at leading online banks). Upon setting up an account, you may also add up to 10 beneficiaries. Your account may be linked with up to 10 external accounts at other banks and transfer limits are quite high (up to $500,000 inbound daily and $250,000 outbound daily). Synchrony offers ATM access and will reimburse up to $5 per statement cycle in other banks' ATM fees.

What to watch for: User reviews cite the inability to reach US-based customer service reps by phone, and note that the system does not have chat or internal email functionality. The banks is also widely associated with long delays (up to 6 days) in processing inbound and outbound cash transfers. The bank also charges a $25 outbound wire transfer fee.


Savings Account - 0.40% APY, no minimum


Good for: Solid APY with No Minimum Balance

Overview: Barclays Bank Delaware is a division of the often-troubled UK-based Barclays PLC. In the US, its brand recognition emanates from its acquisition of Lehman Brothers, its name on an arena in Brooklyn, and its role as one of the credit card issuers for American Airlines. The US subsidiary does not have a branch network and the absence of those costs sometimes enables it to pass along competitive savings and CD rates to its customers.

Highlights: Barclays offers savings accounts with no minimum to open, 24/7 access to funds, online transfers to and from other banks, direct deposit and a mobile app.

What to watch for: Barclays Bank Delaware was not consistently competitive in raising its savings rates as the Federal Reserve increased rates in the late 2010s, but it aggressively cut its savings rate in 2019 and 2020. While it used to be a very strongly reviewed bank by BestCashCow’s users, more recent reviews cite slower ACH transfers than some competitors. With uncertainty around Brexit, BestCashCow strongly recommends that depositors at this U.S. subsidiary maintain deposits strictly within FDIC limits.

Why You Can Trust BestCashCow

Every year, Americans collectively lose at least $80 billion in income just by putting their savings in the wrong bank accounts. BestCashCow is the most comprehensive and unbiased bank rate site on the Internet and our mission is to help you to avoid your share of these losses. We monitor over 30,000 rates from over 8,000 FDIC-insured banks and 7,700 NCUA-insured credit unions. Take a few minutes to explore the table above to see the best savings rates currently offered by online banks, or use the tabs to explore local bank rates or local credit union rates if your prefer to do your banking locally.

By using BestCashCow to move your money to a new bank from one with a low savings rate you may be able to boost your annual interest earned from savings by more than 10X. Banks are always competing for your money. Take advantage of it!

You can learn more about BestCashCow here.

Recent Articles


Could the Climate Crisis Lead to A Banking Crisis?

I’ve previously espoused the belief that banks need to be given time to formulate a response to the current climate crisis.   After COP26 in Glasgow, it is clear that the costs of wind and solar are falling and production advances in both are happening so quickly, I no longer believe that banks need to be extended the benefit of an extended period to outline their climate practices.

But, this opens up a new reality.   A quick transition to an electric economy dependent primarily on wind and solar may result in the rapid abandonment of oil, gas and coal-based generation.   We may quickly reach a point where environmental events become so extreme that abandonment of these assets could be required by local or federal authorities.   Even without government action, these assets might well be rendered obsolete due to costs of operation, and closed due to adverse public relations of continued operations.

I have many friends in credit departments of the major banks on Wall Street who privately confide that their banks have not performed any sort of sensitivity analysis to reflect the possible implications of default of their fossil fuel creditors or projects.  Some of these banks have such extensive loan networks that they cannot even begin to analyze which creditors are fossil fuel creditors and which projects could be jeopardized by the climate crisis or when.

I had believed that while the Federal Reserve has lagged in requiring US banks to analyze this information, we should be able to get some insight and direction from Europe where the European Central Bank (ECB) is several years ahead of the US in analyzing and adjusting to climate exposure.   Unfortunately, the news from Europe is not good.   The ECB reported this week that of 112 European banks analyzed, not one is fully prepared for the possibility of stranded or abandoned assets. Even today, according to the report, only 28% of the banks surveyed are fully modeling environmental or climate change risks when evaluating a debtor’s credit profile.  

At the same time, an article that I found on the ECB report suggests that banks’ credit is much more exposed to a fully functioning ecosystem and cites a French study showing that 42% of security in the French banking system is exposed to the ecosystem.

I think we can boil this down to some very unsettling facts regarding the banking system.   First, we are going to get very little information from banks on their exposure to fossil fuels companies; it may take years for the largest banks to begin to quantify their risk internally.   Second, the climate crisis poses a systemic risk to the banking system.   It is very clear that the entire banking system – and not just the largest banks -- is extremely exposed to the fossil fuels industry and corollary industries (as well as to the nuclear industry), all of which may be forced into obsolescence prior to maturity or even significant loan amortization.   Third, banks are equally exposed to disruption and dysfunction in the environment, and they cannot drag their feet in the funding of new solar and wind projects.   They should be leading the way on this transition as a failure of the ecosystem would be even more costly for them (and the Earth writ large) than writing off their fossil assets.


The Biden Administration Needs to Stop Appeasement of the Nuclear Lobby

I follow developments in renewable energy and work in the space.   2021 has been a remarkable year for the decline in the cost of offshore wind.   We are seeing something similar in the solar/PV space.   It is ending with Vestas’ surprise unveiling of an onshore wind turbine that can generate 7.2 MW, dramatically more output than anything we have seen to date.   It is almost reminiscent of Moore’s law.

We do not need any more advancements in wind and solar for them to be dramatically less expensive than any new facilities based on generation of electricity from fossil fuels.   The US Department of Energy under Trump had indicated in 2020 that the lowest cost of energy by the middle of the decade would be from offshore wind, solar/PV and then onshore wind.  It is now already here.   New energy projects should only be wind of some sort or solar.   (MIT is making advances in fusion, but they have also said that their next tests will be in 2025. Any full scale production remains several decades away; we cannot wait).

Against this backdrop, Twitter is now full of bots and maybe people on the payroll of the nuclear lobby who are advancing nuclear.   They reason that nuclear is more durable than wind and solar, both of which are intermittent.   They also say that nuclear is safe enough to prevent another Fukushima, Chernobyl or Three Mile Island now that it is dependent on small modular nuclear reactors (SMNR).

Unfortunately, after the entire situation where Emmanuel Macron got upset about the US and UK edging France out of an Australian nuclear submarine deal, we’ve started seeing US government officials try to appease France by bringing nuclear back into the mix in the US and other places where it has no business being.  Biden’s DOE officials who have spent their entire life researching wind and solar are releasing ridiculous videos on LinkedIn and Anthony Blinken got Romania to agreement to a nuclear deal that, if it were ever built, will make Romania the pariah of Europe for the next 5 centuries.   To boot, people who should know better, including Obama’s Secretary of Energy, are now advocating extending the life of existing nuclear facilities.

The pronuclear stuff is bought and paid for by an industry that has a lot to lose.  There are certainly also banks that have extended credit to the nuclear industry that have a hand in this.   But, the realities are clear.  Not only is nuclear 4x the cost of wind or solar, but SMNR requires about 7x the lead time.   Wind and solar have the durability of nuclear when paired with a long term storage solution and there are many that are now being brought to market that have a levelized cost of storage around 5 cents per kilowatt hour (those interested can check out Gridscale, Azelio’s TES.POD, ESS Tech or multiple lithium-based solutions).   Nuclear, including SMNR, simply should not be part of any discussions about new energy generation sources. 

As far as extending the life of nuclear and Diablo Canyon in particular, the plant now requires a $4.50 billion upgrade to be cooled more efficiently and to be less environmentally taxing (but, even after this upgrade it will still require an extraordinary amount of the area's fresh water supply to be properly cooled and it will still be environmentally taxing).   And dangerous (I’ve been in both Japan and the Ukraine and I don’t think California wants the risk of becoming either one).   Andrew Cuomo finally closed Indian Point that is only 35 miles from Times Square in New York earlier this year before he had to resign.   Even so, it is estimated to take another 60 years before it is fully decommissioned and safe.   With wind and solar being 100% safe and dramatically more cost-effective, we should continue along the course of removing all risks of a global catastrophe in our energy production system, not just those that release carbon into the atmosphere.  

We can solve the climate crisis with wind and solar and without putting (prolonging) the ridiculous burden of nuclear onto future generations.


Here is How Banks Can Act Now On Climate Change

At COP26 in Glasgow, unlike before, the financial world showed up and a group of 450 financial institutions pledged to invest $130 trillion in the transition to a low carbon world.

But, there is so much to be done and it is now incumbent upon banks of all sizes in the US – and around the world – to become engaged in the necessary climate transition that must occur to ensure the world remains within what the Paris Agreement deemed acceptable climate change parameters.

The question is how.   There is so much to be done.   And, while banks come under heavy criticism for their lending to the fossil fuel and coal industry and commitments must be made now to reduce this funding over the next few years, banks must also need to figure out how to more actively engage in a transition.

At the consumer level, it seems obvious that banks can assist any federal and state incentives and require heat pumps and energy efficiencies in any mortgages and home equity loans they extend.   Auto loans can be predicated on shorter payback periods with favorable terms extended if the car is removed from service in favor of a fully electric car.

Loans to industry can require immediately methane remediation and sourcing of materials from green carbon-neutral sources.   Green steel, for example, could be immediately required, even if that now requires sourcing all steel from Scandinavia where Hybrit and Vow Green Metals are way ahead at this game.

Loans to agriculture can also demand methane procedures around livestock, but also better water and fertilizer practices.  

But, the biggest challenge facing banks is that many technologies that have the potential to reduce carbon are still in their infancy and may in fact never materialize – such as the use of hydrogen as a fuel and carbon capture.  And, banks and large financial institutions, which are inherently risk averse, will not be able to get comfortable with the risks of these projects.

One area where banks can easily become comfortable and where tremendous progress can be made very quickly is through investing in onshore and offshore wind projects.  Wind projects are essential to the new energy infrastructure, offering not only the lowest levelized cost of energy for the next decade, according to the Department of Energy, but also a proven technology that banks across northern Europe have now been actively funding for the last 10 years.   Other areas that banks can invest in today without technology risks are solar, energy storage and the laying of cables to expand the electrification of transportation networks.

These types of projects, particularly offshore wind projects, can require complex lending structures to protect the lending banks.   The good news is that the repayment periods for the cost of funding are much shorter and collateral can be better securitized than was ever possible for oil and gas project finance structures that major banks were always so eager to fund worldwide.  Banks of all sizes in the US can extend capital to these projects at the most senior or secure tranches where the cost of capital is the lowest.  Other funding and guarantees can come in at less secure levels in the capital structure by long-term power purchase agreement (PPA) counterparties (utilities or direct partners) or by local and federal agencies.  As a result of Build Back Better, there will be a healthy amount of capital available that will be released through these agencies in early 2022.

The highest level of risk in the project (and much higher returns) is then taken by sponsors,  by OEMs, by developers or by a group of venture capitalists.    Sponsors like NextEra, Brookfield, Orsted and Avangrid will have basically unlimited capacity for these projects in the US.

It is time for banks to begin to act.  

Contact me through BestCashCow if you need further direction, advice or introductions.


Product Information For High Interest Online Savings Accounts

How Do Online Savings Accounts Work

Over the last two decades, online banks have emerged to offer depositors higher rates on their online savings and money market accounts than are available in the major money center banks and in smaller brick-and-mortar banks. Since these online banks do not have expensive branch networks to maintain, they usually pass some of their savings back to depositors in the form of higher rates. All online banks and local banks listed on BestCashCow are FDIC Insured.

Unlike certificates of deposit (CDs) or time deposits, money in savings and money market accounts accrue interest on a daily rate. The best yielding savings rates can conceivably change from day-to-day with new online banks emerging or existing banks more aggressively seeking to raise the capital accounts. It is important to check back on BestCashCow regularly to be sure that your savings accounts continue to earn the most competitive rates, no matter what the rate environment is.

The table above lists the highest yielding online savings account rates.

Recent Performance of Online Savings And Money Market Accounts

BestCashCow data shows that the highest yielding online savings account and money market rates increased through 2017 and 2018. Rates have stabilized with the best rates well above 2.00% in mid-2019, and the next move in the Fed Funds rate as set by the Federal Reserve is uncertain.

The average online savings or money market rate exceeds the national average rate quite dramatically. The graph below shows how the average rates for online savings and money market accounts have trended over the last several years.  Even while online savings rates have improved, the the average rate of all online and locally offered savings accounts in the BestCashCow rate database has increased more slowly and now sits at 0.22%. (The BestCashCow rate database, the largest in the US, contains rates on over 2,000,000 bank products from all 8,000 banks and 7,700 credit unions in the US.)

Online Savings and Money Market Average Chart 2020

Best High Yield Savings or Money Market Accounts

Depending on where you live, there may be banks and credit unions offering rates still higher than the best online savings rates. Check BestCashCow’s list of the highest yielding local bank rates and the highest yielding credit union rates.

Best Online Bank Accounts with High Interest Rates

In the above table, you will find a list of the highest online savings account rates, ranked in descending order by interest rate currently offered. Online bank accounts are slightly different in terms of their features and the services offered. By reading the reviews of each bank, accessible from the rightmost column, you will be able to determine which bank is the best for you. Please also refer to the section below entitled “Best Online Savings Account Rates".

Are Online Savings Accounts Safe?

All bank accounts listed on BestCashCow are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation ("FDIC"). The FDIC is a federal government chartered institution that provides insurance to a maximum amount of $250,000 per individual per institution (or $500,000 for joint account holders). All deposits (CDs, Checking, Savings Accounts) held in the same type of ownership at a single financial institution are only insured to $250,000. However, funds held in different types of ownership (Individual, Joint, Trust, Retirement) may fall under separate FDIC insurance provisions. BestCashCow.com strongly recommends that you deposit savings in only FDIC insured institutions and that you do not exceed FDIC coverage limits. Please visit the FDIC's website to determine your coverage limits based on your circumstances.

Advantages of Online Savings Accounts:

  • Higher interest rate.
  • Often top notch online functionality with 24/7 access, 365 days a year. You can check your balance, update your contact info, make transfers, and order deposit slips at any time. For more pressing issues, customer support is also usually accessible 24/7, so you can talk to an actual human instead of your computer screen.
  • Superior online and mobile access. Many traditional banks have been slow to adopt the best web and mobile features to improve the customer experience online. 
  • Easy money transfer capabilities to and from a primary checking account.
  • Liquidity. Depositors can withdraw their money at any time.

Disadvantages of Online Only Banks:

  • A variable interest rate. While most leading online banks have not lowered rates significantly in past years, any savings rate can conceivably be lowered at any time.
  • There are often new entrants to the market that can disappear as quickly as they arrive on the scene.
  • Interaction is only via phone or Internet. You cannot walk into a branch and talk to a customer service representative if you have a problem with your savings account. Nonetheless, the leading, high profile online banks provide virtually instant phone access at all hours to a representative. However, interaction with some of the smaller online banks can be more difficult as it is ordinarily limited to business hours in their area of operation.
  • You cannot get cash or cashier's checks instantly as you can in a branch bank, and matters where you need to rely on the US Postal system can lead to significant delays and obstacles.
  • There is no opportunity to build a relationship with a banker should you need a loan or additional services in the future.

What is the best account for easy access?

Depending on where you live and how accessible the branch is, you may find that the best account for easy access is through a local bank or credit union. However, today many high yielding savings and money market accounts provide such easy accessibility, including through mobile apps, and can enable such easy transfers to a correspondent account at a local bank through ACH transfers, that more and more people are opening accounts for cash and savings that they do not need immediately.

Is a high-yielding online savings account your best option?

High-interest savings accounts are always an ideal place to keep your emergency fund or any money to which still you need ready access. Your money will be safer than if you stuffed it under your mattress, and it will grow a bit, too. Investors will find that keeping large amounts of money in savings and CDs provides them with lower returns but cushions them against market crashes like we experienced in 2000 and 2001 and again in 2008 and 2009.

To see how savings and money market accounts compare with CDs or time deposits and bonds, view the BestCashCow income guide here.

Frequently Asked Questions About Online Savings Accounts

What is a savings account?

A savings account is one of the simplest types of bank accounts. It allows you to store cash securely and earn interest on your money.

What is a money market account?

The differences between a savings account and a money market account are largely arcane. Some savings accounts are limited by US federal regulations to six outbound transfers per month (the bank may allow additional access for a fee). Money market accounts are technically not bound by those limitations and offer more ways to access deposits by issuing checks and debit cards. Prudent consumers will compare the two interchangeably, focusing primarily on rates and service among FDIC-insured banks (or NCUA-insured, for credit unions). Consumers who maximize their use of online savings and money market accounts access these accounts through ACH transfers that are easily set up on the online bank’s website so the additional ways to access deposits that money market accounts offer are rarely valuable.

How to Open a Savings Account?

The process of opening an online savings account or money market account is usually very simple. Banks ordinary ask you a few questions to verify your identify. These questions include seeking information from a state or government issued ID, such as a driver’s license. Due to increased US anti-money laundering rules and Department of Homeland Security requirements, it is very likely that you will also be asked to produce a photocopy of your license and a picture taken from your iPhone or other smartphone and emailed to the bank will ordinarily suffice. The bank may ask for information regarding a correspondent account from which you intend to have them draw the money to provide the initial funding. You therefore will need the ABA number and account number from an existing account that you have. They will verify this account by having you log back in to confirm the amounts of one or two small deposits to your correspondent account before they draw the funds from this account. Finally, many banks do a “soft” credit pull from Experian, Equifax or some other credit rating agency. While your credit rating will ordinarily not be affected, the application process may involve your answering questions about where you have lived, loans you may have had, past employers or cars you may have owned. Many people do not enjoy providing the amount of personal information required over the internet; therefore, some of the larger online banks have 24-7 customer service to guide you through the process. You can see the experiences of others with a given online savings bank that you are considering by reviewing the comments left in BestCashCow’s table above.

Are online savings rates always better than rates at brick-and-mortar banks?

No. Online banks often offer higher savings and CD rates because they have lower expenses by not having to maintain brick-and-mortar locations. You should also check rates at local banks and credit unions. Unlike other websites, BestCashCow.com compiles all of these rates, listing them in an unbiased manner that shows the proximity of each bank or credit union to you. Please access these rates using the tabs above.

Why do savings rates vary so much?

Even though rates are at levels that are historically very low, there is competition for your money. Like any active marketplace, there are buyers and sellers of goods and services at different prices.

How do I choose the right savings or money market account?

Begin your search with the table here on BestCashCow.com. In addition to checking online savings rates, you should also check local bank rates and local credit union rates.

What is the Best Fixed Rate Savings Account?

BestCashCow strongly encourages people to avoid very short-term promotional rates. The very nature of a savings or money market account is that the rate can change from one day to the next. Savings rates may be guaranteed not to change for some very short length of time, but they are not fixed. If you require a fixed rate or greater certainty that the rate that you are making will not change, you should consider CDs, which represent a time deposit, for some or all of your savings.

Should I consider CDs?

If you are unlikely to require access to your cash for some time, you may also consider certificates of deposit (CDs). While CDs have penalties for early withdrawal that may even eat into your principal, the rates on 2, 3, 4 and 5 year CDs are ordinarily significantly higher than savings rates. CDs also offer the certainty of rate stability for the term of the CD. Several sections and articles on BestCashCow can also help you to identify your proper cash allocation between savings and CDs.

With savings rates at such low levels, does earning a higher savings rate or the best savings rate really mean anything to me?

Even a difference of a couple of basis points (hundredths of a percentage point) can really add up over time, especially on large sums of money. You may wish to familiarize yourself with the BestCashCow Savings Calculator in order to understand the importance of compounding interest at higher rates on your savings over time.

If you have not accessed the BestCashCow Savings Calculator or mastered the magic of compounded earnings, here is the plain and simple truth:
  • $250,000 deposited at a major money center bank like Chase, Citibank, Bank of America or Wells Fargo is likely earning less than 0.10% APY. That money is therefore making no more than $250 a year in interest.
  • That same $250,000 deposited at a leading online bank is earning over 1% or over $2,500.
  • Even though the increased earnings from high yield savings (in this example, $2,250 annually) is fully taxable at the federal and state and local levels, wouldn’t you like to be earning that extra income from high-yielding savings accounts?

What does APY mean?

“APY” stands for annual percentage yield. Savings rates are displayed in terms of APY to indicate the effective annual-interest return, including the compounding of interest, over the course of a single year. $100,000 deposited in a savings or CD account with a 1.20% APY will earn $1,200 in the course of the year, but monthly interest in the first few months may be less than $100 a month (this also depends on the number of days in the month). Hence, the APY rate is ordinarily a couple of basis points above the real interest rates. Unlike with a CD, your actual APY in a savings account or money market account may vary if the rate changes.

Are you still hesitant to open a high interest-earning online savings account?

Here are some common reasons people hold off:
  • You need to make more than six withdrawals a month. Avoid potential problems by opening a high earning online money market account (some of the best rates available in the table above are actually from online money market accounts), opening a savings account at a bank which does not enforce the 6 transfer limit, tying your account to a correspondent bank’s money market account or checking account at a major money center bank (like Chase, Citibank, Wells Fargo, or Bank of America) where you make one larger transfer each month.
  • You like having access to a physical branch. Find out what the minimum balance required to avoid fees on your account at your physical branch, then transfer the excess balances to a high yielding online savings or money market account. You’ll continue to have access to the physical interaction and services of the bank with which you are used to banking, but you will also be dramatically increasing the interest earned on cash you don’t need over time.
  • You need to deposit large sums of cash or checks in excess of the online bank’s mobile deposit limit. In this case, you need access to a physical branch. See point 2, above.
  • You want one institution to handle all of your financial matters. Most online banks do not offer mortgages, credit cards and brokerage services. There is no financial advantage to keeping all of your financial transactions in one or even a handful of institutions.

What is a health savings account?

A health savings account (or HSA) is a tax advantaged medical savings account available to taxpayers in the United States who are enrolled in a high-deductible health plan (HDHP). The funds contributed to this kind of account are not subject to federal income tax at the time of deposit. According to IRS Publication 969 (2016), the interest or other earnings on the assets in the account are tax free and distributions may be tax free if you pay qualified medical expenses or other expenses not covered by health insurance such as dental or vision care. Due to the tax advantages of a health savings account, these accounts should be set up separately through banks offering them (such as Chase or Bank of America) and their assets should not be comingled with a high yielding online savings account. We know of no online banks currently offering HSAs.

What is an education savings account?

Education savings accounts, such as Coverdell Education savings accounts and 529 plans, are accounts that allow family members to obtain certain tax advantages through setting aside funds for a child’s future education. 529 programs are administered at the state level and you must invest in programs they administer; Coverdell education savings accounts are move flexible (and generally follow the same rules as IRAs), however we know of no online banks currently offering Coverdell Education savings accounts.

What is a child savings account?

A child savings account is a savings account in the name of the child with a parent or guardian named as the custodian on the account until the child reaches the age of 18 or 21 (depending of the child’s state of residency). A child savings account can be a great way to teach your child the importance of saving money from a young age. More information on child savings accounts can be found here. Ally and Capital One 360 are among the few online banks offering child savings accounts.