Fidelity CD Rates: How They Compare

Spencer TierneySep 8, 2020
Fidelity CD Rates: How They Compare
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Fidelity CD rates

  • 1-year: 0.10% APY

  • 3-year: 0.30% APY

  • 5-year: 0.45% APY

  • 10-year: 1.00% APY

Fidelity Investments CD
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Fidelity’s certificates of deposit differ from traditional bank CDs in that they’re brokered CDs, which are CDs issued by banks but available only to brokerage customers. Fidelity offers new-issue CDs from various banks as well as CDs sold by other investors on a secondary market. Unlike bank CDs, brokered CD rates fluctuate daily and can be higher or lower than those found directly through online banks and credit unions.

» Learn more about brokered CDs

Fidelity CD rates

Fidelity has at least 10 terms for new-issue CDs. The following are the top CD rates available in Fidelity's marketplace for each term as of the date of publication*:

3-month CD

0.05% APY

6-month CD

0.05% APY

9-month CD

1.85% APY

1-year CD

0.10% APY

18-month CD

1.90% APY

2-year CD

0.20% APY

3-year CD

0.30% APY

4-year CD

0.35% APY

5-year CD

0.45% APY

10-year CD

1.00% APY

*Note: Rates are subject to daily fluctuations. Check Fidelity’s website for the latest.

» Want more options? See the best CD rates at banks and credit unions

How Fidelity CDs work

Getting brokered CDs is a more complex process than opening bank CDs.

Investment portfolio required. You must have a brokerage account, either a taxable or individual retirement account, to hold your Fidelity CDs.

Minimum per CD: Fidelity’s new-issue CDs start at $1,000 and are typically issued in increments of $1,000. Unlike regular bank CDs, which may hold various amounts of money, Fidelity breaks its CDs up into smaller, typically standardized amounts. For example, buying $20,000 in CDs technically means you’re buying 20 CDs of $1,000 each.

Rates are banks’ decisions: Banks where the CDs originate can choose to have higher or lower rates for their Fidelity CDs than what they offer directly to their own customers.

Types of CDs: Fidelity offers three:

  • Regular CDs: You receive interest until the term ends, or you can decide to sell before then.

  • Callable CDs: These tend to have a slightly better rate than regular CDs, but have an important caveat. The bank issuing them can “call” or cancel the CD before the term ends. This means you would receive interest only for the time you had the CD.

  • Step-up CDs: These CDs have a predetermined schedule for rate increases and are usually callable, so you might not see the rate increase before the CD gets called.

The type of CD depends on the issuing bank, which you can see in Fidelity’s marketplace.

More details about Fidelity CDs

Minimum increment per CD

$1,000, which means a CD investment typically must be a multiple of $1,000. Your deposit, for example, can be $20,000 but not $20,100.

Interest payment frequency

Depends on the CD. CDs can pay interest "at maturity," meaning when the term ends, or pay you monthly, semiannually or annually.

The interest goes into the Fidelity account that holds the CD, not back into the CD. This Fidelity account can be an IRA, taxable brokerage account or cash management account.

Monthly fee

None, which is common for CDs.

Range of new CD terms

3 month to 10 years. (The range may vary in Fidelity’s marketplace.)

Compounding period

None. Brokered CDs earn simple interest, not compound interest like bank CDs do. This means you earn the same amount of interest every year of a CD's term instead of earning increasingly more interest as a CD's balance gets higher.

Early withdrawal penalty?

None, but there could be a related cost. If you need to access money from a CD before a term expires, you must sell it on a secondary market. Selling can result in losing money on a CD.

Renewal period?

None, unless enrolled in Fidelity's auto roll service. CDs bought on Fidelity don't automatically renew like bank CDs typically do, but you can enroll in an auto roll service, which reinvests a CD when it expires. The new CD might be issued by a different bank from the original CD. You can also have CDs renew within a CD ladder (see more details about this saving strategy).

No-penalty CDs available?

Fidelity IRA CD available?

Yes; while banks tend to be limited to offering CDs and savings accounts in an IRA, Fidelity offers more extensive options in an IRA, including mutual funds, stocks, bonds and CDs. If you'd rather stick to banks' IRA CDs, you can learn about some solid options.

» Learn more about accounts on our Fidelity review

What else to know when buying Fidelity CDs

More pros:

  • Fidelity can federally insure beyond a bank’s limits. Federal deposit insurance at a bank can cover only up to $250,000 per account type per customer. Since Fidelity lets you buy CDs from many banks, you can expand your protection against the possibility of a bank failing.

  • Range of terms is wider than you can find at most banks. Fidelity offers flexibility for short- and long-term CDs and CD ladders, with rare 10-year terms.

More cons:

  • Top rates available today may fluctuate. Since the CDs are not Fidelity's own, it doesn’t control what rates show up in its marketplace. There’s no guarantee you’ll find the same top rates in the morning and evening on the same day. But once you buy a CD, you lock in that rate.

  • Some investing knowledge required. A new investor might come across unfamiliar terms on Fidelity’s platform. For example, “coupon” refers to interest rate and “call protected” means a CD is not callable.

» On the fence about a CD? If you might need access to your money, look into the best high-yield savings accounts instead.

Brokered CDs have risks and rewards

Fidelity Investments CD
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As a brokerage, Fidelity can offer more CD options than one bank can. This could be helpful to investors who have a lump of cash suitable for CDs, but potentially overwhelming if you’re unfamiliar with investing. If you want to see more CD options, check out our list of best CD rates this month. For more about Fidelity as a broker, see our review.