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Best High Yield Online Savings Accounts

Banking, Savings Accounts
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Tops for savings interest rates and more: Synchrony, 1.05% APY, has great ATM access. GS Bank also offers 1.05% APY. For highly rated apps, try Barclays (1.00% APY). Ally Bank (1.00% APY) has an excellent digital experience. For a $100 bonus and 0.95% APY, try Discover Bank.

 

Best digital experience
Ally+Bank
Learn more
at Ally Bank
Ally Online Savings

Excellent interest rate
Barclays
Learn more
at Barclays
Barclays Online Savings

Best for tracking savings goals
Capital+One
Read full review
on NerdWallet
360 Savings® by Capital One®

Best ATM access
Synchrony+Bank
Read full review
on NerdWallet
Synchrony High Yield Savings

Best bonus
Discover
Learn more
at Discover
Discover Bank

Best credit union
Alliant+Credit+Union
Read full review
on NerdWallet
Alliant Credit Union

Great interest rate
GS Bank
Read full review
on NerdWallet
GS Bank

Also of note
Bank5+Connect
Read full review
on NerdWallet
Bank5 Connect

 

One advantage of online banks is that they don’t have to maintain expensive branches like traditional brick-and-mortar operations do. With lower costs, online banks often offer better interest rates and lower fees. Many online savings accounts pay annual percentage yields of about 1% or more — that’s about 17 times higher than the current national average.

Here are NerdWallet’s top high-yield online savings accounts.

Ally Bank: Best digital experience

Ally+Bank
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at Ally Bank
Ally Bank has one of the best savings accounts when it comes to the overall digital experience. The website is easy to use, and the bank’s mobile apps are compatible not only with Apple and Android devices, but also with Windows phones. It also offers real-time chat support, unlike most of its competitors. The 1.00% APY is close to the best on the market, and there’s no monthly fee or minimum deposit requirement.

Ally is a good choice for people who want a top-tier online experience, along with a strong interest rate.

» MORE: NerdWallet’s best online checking accounts

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Barclays Online Savings: Excellent interest rate

Barclays
Learn more
at Barclays
This online offshoot of the global financial services company offers U.S. customers a high-yield savings account accessible through a streamlined website. There’s no monthly fee or minimum balance requirement. With a 1.00% APY, the interest rate is close to the highest out there. Customer service is available by phone, and the banking apps are highly rated by users.

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360 Savings by Capital One®: Best for tracking savings goals

Capital+One
Read full review
on NerdWallet
Capital One’s well-regarded apps and digital tools can help you track financial goals. A feature called My Savings Goal lets you set a goal, like $500 for “holiday gifts.” Plug in the amount you want to set aside each week or each month, and the tool calculates when you’ll reach your goal. Alternatively, set a target date and the tool will calculate the necessary contribution amounts. There is no monthly fee or minimum balance requirement. Your deposits earn a variable APY of 0.75%. For balances of $10,000 or higher, Capital One’s money market account pays more — 1.0% APY. If organizing your savings into separate goals sounds like a strategy that would work well for you, Capital One could be a wise choice.

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Synchrony High Yield Savings: Best ATM access

Synchrony+Bank
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on NerdWallet
Synchrony offers an excellent savings account along with the convenience of an ATM card. It pays a 1.05% APY. There is no monthly fee or minimum balance requirement to worry about, and you earn a variety of perks — like discounts on car rentals, hotels and spas — for saving more money. The bank maintains a branch in Bridgewater, New Jersey, but otherwise you should expect to conduct your business and get customer support by phone, online or via mobile. For a strong interest rate, easy-to-avoid fees and a rewards program, Synchrony is a good choice.

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Discover Bank: Best bonus

Discover
Learn more
at Discover
Although Discover Bank’s savings account has a $500 minimum deposit requirement, a bit heftier than those of some other banks, it has a competitive APY of 0.95%. Additional pluses: No monthly fee, no balance requirement — and you can earn a $100 bonus with a minimum qualifying deposit.

The company says:

“To get your $100 Bonus:

“What to do: Apply for your first Discover Online Savings Account (OSA) by 5/31/17. Enter Offer Code NW217 when applying. Deposit at least $15,000 by 6/15/17.

“What to know: Offer not valid for existing or prior Discover savings customers. Account must be open when bonus is credited. Bonus will be credited to the account by 6/30/17. Bonus is considered interest and will be reported on IRS Form 1099-INT. Offer may be modified/withdrawn without notice.”

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Alliant: Best credit union

Alliant+Credit+Union
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on NerdWallet
While many credit unions limit their membership pretty strictly, Chicago-area Alliant Credit Union is different. People can join with just a $10 charitable donation, if they don’t happen to meet any of the other membership criteria. Members can open an Alliant savings account that pays a 1.00% APY on balances of $100 or more. The $1 monthly fee is waived if you choose e-statements. Phone support is available 24/7. There’s a $5 minimum deposit, but Alliant even has you covered there: The credit union pays you a $5 bonus when you open an account. If you like the idea of banking with a not-for-profit credit union, Alliant offers exceptionally easy membership terms and a good interest rate.

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GS Bank: Great interest rate

GS Bank
Read full review
on NerdWallet
If you want to simply park some cash and earn interest, GS Bank pays a highly competitive 1.05% APY on savings deposits. This newbie online bank, an offshoot of Goldman Sachs, charges no fees, and the minimum balance required is just $1. The drawbacks: GS Bank has no checking account, ATM network or mobile app. You’ll need an outside bank account for transferring money into and out of the GS Bank savings account.

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Bank5 Connect: Also of note

Bank5+Connect
Read full review
on NerdWallet
This no-frills internet bank pays a competitive interest rate of 0.90% APY with a minimum balance of $100 required. Just a $10 deposit is enough to open the account, and there is no monthly fee. The bank’s mobile app for Android gets high marks from app store users, though it’s less popular with iOS users. There are no branches, but you can reach customer service by phone, chat and Twitter. If you link your account with a Bank5 Connect checking account, you’ll get a debit card that you can use at thousands of free ATMs and get out-of-network ATM fee reimbursements of up to $15 a month.

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» MORE: NerdWallet’s best bank account promotions and bonuses

Jeanne Lee is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: jlee@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @jlee_jeanne. NerdWallet writers Virginia C. McGuire and Devan Goldstein contributed to this report.


METHODOLOGY

To determine the best accounts, we took a close look at over 60 financial institutions: the largest U.S. banks based on assets, debit card volume, Internet search traffic and other factors; the nation’s largest credit unions, based on deposits as well as broad-based membership requirements; and other notable and/or emerging players in the industry.

Financial institutions surveyed include: Alaska USA Federal Credit Union, Alliant Credit Union, Ally Bank, Andrews Federal Credit Union, Aspiration, Associated Bank, Bank5 Connect, BankDirect, Bank of America, Bank of Internet, Bank of the West, Barclays, BB&T, BBVA Compass, Boeing Employees Credit Union, BMO Harris, Capital One 360, Charles Schwab Bank, Chase, Citibank, Citizens Bank, Comerica Bank, Commerce Bank, Connexus Credit Union, Consumers Credit Union, Discover Bank, EverBank, Fidelity, Fifth Third Bank, First Tech Federal Credit Union, Golden 1 Credit Union, GS Bank, HSBC Bank USA, Huntington Bank, KeyBank, MemoryBank, MetaBank, M&T Bank, Navy Federal Credit Union, Pentagon Federal Credit Union, People’s United Bank, PNC, Radius Bank, Regions Bank, Santander Bank, SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union, Security Service Federal Credit Union, Simple, Star One Credit Union, State Employees’ Credit Union of North Carolina, State Farm Bank, Suncoast Credit Union, SunTrust Bank, Synchrony Bank, TCF Bank, TD Bank, Union Bank, UFB Direct, USAA, U.S. Bank, Wells Fargo, Woodforest National Bank, Zero Financial and Zions Bank.

How we rate banks and credit unions