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NerdWallet’s Top High Yield Savings Accounts for the Digital Age

Online savings accounts offer industry-leading interest rates, the perfect solution for building an emergency fund or any number of other savings goals. But despite what some might say, it’s not all about yield when it comes to finding the best savings account. From how you access your account to added perks and features, online savings accounts are more diverse than you might think. NerdWallet has sifted through the offers to bring you our top high-yield online savings account deals.

Synchrony Bank - High Yield Savings - 1.05% APY*

This high yield online savings account goes above and beyond a great interest rate by offering a loyalty rewards program for diligent savers and long-time customers. OptimizerPlus perks include travel discounts, ATM fee reimbursements, free checks, and special rate offers. But this account has more to offer than a few perks. With a yield of 1.05% APY, the Optimizer+plus High Yield Savings has one of the highest rates in the industry. There's a $5 monthly fee, but a $50 balance will easily waive it.

Barclays Bank - Online Savings - 1.00% APY*

The British banking giant, Barclays, has a lot to offer for savers across the pond as well. Their online savings account rate is currently one of the best in the nation. There’s no minimum balance requirement or monthly fee. While the Barclays online bank accounts stick to the basics, you can still make deposits via online transfer, snail mail or remote deposit capture using your phone or computer.

Ally Bank - Online Savings - 0.99% APY*

Besides being a pretty shade of purple, Ally’s online banking system has some of the best perks in the business. In addition to sending checks by mail, you can scan and upload them yourself with Ally eCheck Deposit, or just take a picture with your smartphone and deposit the check via Ally’s mobile app. Ally also lets you link to an unlimited number of external bank accounts, just in case you happen to have, like, ten. No judgments here.

Capital One 360 - 360 Savings - 0.75% APY*

Capital One 360’s online savings option provides a trio of great benefits: a high interest rate, no fees, and easy access via mobile app or online banking. The 360 Savings account also offers a few nifty perks such as the ability to split your account into multiple sub-accounts, give them names like “Christmas Fund”, and transfer money to them automatically. This is perfect for the highly organized super saver.

Discover Bank - Online Savings - 0.90% APY*

Discover makes it easy to manage your savings account and Discover card online. You can access both from the same mobile app, too. The Discover Online Savings account has no monthly fee or minimum balance, however it does require a $500 minimum deposit to open the account. Use their online calculator to determine your interest earnings over a period of time and compare against national averages.

Bank5 Connect - High-Interest Savings - 0.90% APY*

Bank5 Connect's online savings account comes with all the benefits of a full-service online bank that many people have come to appreciate, all while paying out one of the nation's highest yields. Your money is of course FDIC Insured for up to $250,000, but as an added bonus, Bank5 Connect offers DIF Insurance balances over $250,000, meaning 100% of deposits are insured in full. Customers can choose from a full range of accounts, including checking and CDs, and easily access those accounts for check deposits or other needs with their mobile app (available for iPhone and Android). Bank5 Connect is also investing in their customers' financial education, with a series of videos, podcasts, and articles available on a variety of topics. If you're the type to be hesitant about trying new banks, know that this one is an online division of BankFive, a Massachusetts-based bank that's been serving its community for nearly 160 years!

Why bank online?

Online banks save a ton of money on personnel and maintenance costs because they have no physical branches. The result is more money for you. Better yet, online savings accounts are surprising easy to maintain. You have to manage your account online, but you can access your money 24/7 and transfer it between accounts anytime. You can’t talk to a representative in person, but they’re always available online or over the phone. And, if you need to withdraw money or deposit checks, you can always do that via mail, usually for free. By federal law, you’re limited to six withdrawals a month with any savings account, online or otherwise, so you won’t need to worry about that much. Thus, if you’re tech-savvy, an online savings account is incredibly convenient.

Looking for an account with a brick-and-mortar bank instead? Check out our tool to find savings account rates closer to home.

Should you open a savings account?

A savings account is a good place to set aside money you might need to access quickly, but ideally would like to save. A savings account is great for building an emergency fund, for example, or setting aside money for a large purchase or vacation. At many banks, you can link your checking account to a savings account to make easy transfers, or transfer money automatically from one account to the other, but that doesn’t mean you’ll get a good interest rate. It pays to shop around.

Traditional wisdom holds that if you’re hoping to earn the maximum amount of interest on your savings, you’ll be happier with a CD or money market account, which require that you leave your investment alone for a set amount of time, often several years or more, to get the best rate. In normal times, both of these accounts give higher interest rates than savings accounts. But now, interest rates are so low that many CD’s don’t clear the 1% APY mark. Since CD rates are so low, why lock yourself in?

  • mjoecups

    If your saving your money for the long term, savings account are stupid. Buy CD’s if you are conservative or invest in equities, which have historically had a much better return…

    • BLUE

      Agreed, 25k+ is a lot for money that you need access to quickly maybe right now I’d say okay some money in a savings account is okay since CDs are horrible but in a normal economy with better rates I’d go with CD for conservative savings like you said and honestly putting your money in the index makes the most sense for long term growth pretty safe growth. Obviously you don’t want it all in one spot though.

  • Hank

    Best way to save money is to invest in the stock market. Apple is up over 200,000 percent since inception. It’s up 41% in the past year. Forget savings accounts. Banks are a fraud.

    • Rebecca Hall

      I am very new to investing. How do you buy stock from apple?? please help! My email is Missrmhall@gmail.com

      • Jason Ramage

        First, be aware that stocks also go down. If you’ll need the money in the next 2-3 years, put it in savings. If you can keep it invested for 5+ years, stocks are a good idea.
        To invest, you need a brokerage account. A great one for starting out is Loyal3 because there are no fees or commissions to buy and sell. They only offer a few stocks, but Apple is on their list.

        • Rebecca Hall

          Wow…I got a brokerage account through E trade.. How good are they?? Also…is it best to buy market? or close of market??

          • Rebecca Hall

            And what are some good savings accounts right now. I have been looking into CDs and Money Markets but interested rates are rather low right now… unless I’m not looking in the right places….

    • Tony Paulinsky

      enron?…where thousands lost everything they own

    • Mike Fisher

      Apple is done. If you’re smart, you’ll sell it all.

      Even Steve Wozniak, Apple’s #2, sold his…

    • Josh Igbinijesu

      Investing in stock is hardly a way to ‘save’ money. Due to the high volatility and the over-regulated and qualification-required services it is the WORST way to save.
      Also, investing in something like Apple takes a great deal of money. Not just anyone can buy any stock they like. You need to be an accredited investor to buy shares in the companies you actually want to. The reason for it goes back to a time when poor people would try to buy stocks and easily be scammed out of their money.
      Investing is only a good idea for people who understand it and are seeking to make money, not save. This is the first time I’ve seen it described that way. ‘Saving is for losers’. And that’s because it doesn’t do anything but help you loose money… just in a slower and less obvious way. Why? Because it’s constantly depreciating due to inflation, the economy, etc.

      • Jason Ramage

        We do need to be careful saying anything is “best” in life. Everything has its tradeoffs. For emergency fund and near-term savings targets (i.e. less than five years), the money should be making a piddly 1% in a savings account like the ones listed in this article. Other savings that won’t be needed on short notice – and can afford to ride through market price fluctuations – can be considered for investing in stocks. But it doesn’t take that much money: Apple is trading around $125-130 per share. Commissions are less than $10 at most brokers. You can trade for even less (or free) with places like Sharebuilder, Loyal3, Motif, and Robinhood.

    • bill

      how do i go about investing in the stock market

  • yl

    can anyone explain how to pair ge capital bank savings and mango savings?

    • Toni Morris

      I set up a external account on ge capital. You can connect any accounts through mango but u do get an actual card with mango so it is easier to get money from there. You can withdrawn from mango and add to ge capital through ge capital online.

      • Josh Igbinijesu

        So I take it that mango savings is a type of savings account. Do you know how to open with, let’s say, Barclay’s, Guaranty Trust Bank, Chase or Union Bank of Switzerland. And what’s required to open one?

  • cyndrome

    Thanks for sharing this.

  • grwse

    gay

    • Josh Igbinijesu

      I know u r.

    • Anonymous

      no, you’re gay.

  • Josh Igbinijesu

    I just checked CIT Bank and it requires a $100 initial deposit. Also, the actual APY value is 0.95% for Tier 1, which, basically, is the one you want to get, ‘High Yield Savings’ (savings account) requiring a daily minimum balance of nothing.
    The only other is Tier 2 with a 1% APY, but requiring a $25,000 daily deposit.

  • Josh Igbinijesu

    I should also have said what @disqus_957WeQIRIM:disqus did. I hadn’t checked until now.

  • miguel

    The best way to get fix income is trading credit vertical spread on SPY. about 2-5 % each month if you want to know more about it let me know. I started trading credit spread since I was studying my finance degree just 2 years ago and so far that is my return every month. It could be more return but I try to mitigate risk.

    • I__AM__GOD

      Better idea. SMD.