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Best High-Yield Online Savings Accounts of 2018

Banking, Savings Accounts
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With the best high-yield online savings accounts, you get a safe place to keep your money while you’re earning top rates.

Because online banks don’t have the expense of maintaining branches like traditional banks do, they can offer annual percentage yields of 1% or more — about 14 times higher than the national average of 0.07%. Though 1% may not sound like much, it adds up.

Max out your savings by looking for accounts with the highest yield, as well as great features. Our Nerds did extensive, independent research on dozens of banks to find the best high-yield savings accounts. We looked for top rates plus great digital tools, free access to plenty of ATMs and more.

Top interest rates
Synchrony+Bank
Learn more
at Synchrony,
Member, FDIC

Synchrony High Yield Savings

Overall bank rating:
CIT Bank
Learn more
at CIT,
Member, FDIC

CIT Bank Premier High Yield Savings

Overall bank rating:
Marcus by Goldman Sachs
Learn more
at Goldman Sachs Bank USA,
Member, FDIC

Marcus by Goldman Sachs

Overall bank rating:

American Express National Bank
Learn more

at American Express National Bank,
Member, FDIC

American Express National Bank

Overall bank rating:
Barclays
Learn more
at Barclays,
Member, FDIC

Barclays Online Savings

Overall bank rating:
Discover
Read full review
on NerdWallet

Discover Bank

Overall bank rating:
Great interest rate, digital experience
Ally
Learn more
at Ally,
Member, FDIC

Ally Online Savings

Overall bank rating:
Top credit union
Alliant+Credit+Union
Read full review
on NerdWallet
Alliant Credit Union

Overall bank rating:
Great for tracking savings goals
Capital+One
Read full review
on NerdWallet
360 Savings by Capital One®

Overall bank rating:

 

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

Synchrony High Yield Savings: Top interest rate

NerdWallet has rated this bank:

Synchrony+Bank
Learn more
at Synchrony,
Member, FDIC

Synchrony offers an excellent savings account along with the convenience of an ATM card. It pays a 1.55% APY. There’s no monthly fee or minimum balance requirement, and you can earn a variety of perks, such as ATM fee reimbursements and discounts on car rentals and hotels. 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. (For more details, read our Synchrony review.)

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CIT Bank Premier High Yield Savings: Top interest rate

NerdWallet has rated this bank:

CIT Bank
Learn more
at CIT,
Member, FDIC

CIT Bank offers a stellar APY of 1.55%, which soundly beats the 0.07% national average. There are no fees or daily minimum balance requirements for the CIT Bank savings account, but there is a minimum opening deposit of $100. (Read our CIT review for details on its savings accounts.)

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Marcus by Goldman Sachs: Best for interest rate

NerdWallet has rated this bank:
Marcus by Goldman Sachs
Learn more
at Goldman Sachs Bank USA,
Member, FDIC

If you want to simply park some cash and earn interest, Marcus by Goldman Sachs pays a highly competitive 1.60% APY on savings deposits (as well as strong CD rates for longer-term savings goals). This online bank, an offshoot of Goldman Sachs, charges no fees, and the minimum balance required to earn interest is just $1. Keep in mind the bank doesn’t offer a checking account, access to an ATM network or a mobile app. And its savings account requires another bank account to make deposits and withdrawals. (For CD rates and more, read our Marcus by Goldman Sachs review.)

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American Express National Bank: Top interest rate

NerdWallet has rated this bank:

American Express National Bank
Learn more

at American Express National Bank,
Member, FDIC

The well-known credit card company offers a savings account with an impressive 1.55% APY. There are no monthly fees or minimum balance requirements. The company doesn’t offer ATM cards or checks, so you’ll need to link up an external bank account for adding and withdrawing funds. Although American Express has a mobile app, it’s designed for credit card customers. Still, the rate is incentive to consider American Express.

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Barclays Online Savings: Top interest rate

NerdWallet has rated this bank:

Barclays
Learn more
at Barclays,
Member, FDIC

Barclays, an online division 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, and the nonsufficient-funds fee is a low $5. With a 1.50% APY, the interest rate is among the highest out there. Customer service is available by phone. Like Goldman Sachs, the bank has no checking account or ATM network, and there’s no mobile app for U.S. customers. You’ll need an outside bank account for transferring money into and out of your savings account. (For more about the bank, read our Barclays review.)

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Discover Bank: Top interest rate

NerdWallet has rated this bank:
Discover
Read full review
on NerdWallet

Discover Bank has a solid APY of 1.50%. The bank’s website is easy to navigate, and both its iOS and Android apps receive high ratings. There’s one branch in Delaware, but customer support is available by phone 24/7. (For more about the bank, including its high-rated checking account, see our Discover review.)

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Ally Bank: Great interest rate, digital experience

NerdWallet has rated this bank:
Ally
Learn more
at Ally,
Member, FDIC

Ally Bank has one of the best savings accounts when it comes to overall digital experience. The website is easy to use, and the bank’s mobile apps are compatible with Apple, Android and Windows devices. It also offers real-time chat support, unlike many of its competitors. The 1.45% APY is among 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. (Read our Ally review.)

» See Ally’s checking and more on our list of best online checking accounts
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Alliant: Top credit union

NerdWallet has rated this bank:

Alliant+Credit+Union
Read full review
on NerdWallet
Many credit unions restrict their membership by area or employer, but Alliant Credit Union is different. People can join with a $10 charitable donation if they don’t meet any of the other membership criteria. Members can open an Alliant savings account that pays a 1.50% APY on balances of $100 or more. The credit union waives the $1 monthly fee if you choose e-statements. Phone support is available 24/7. A $5 minimum deposit is required to open an account, but Alliant 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, Chicago-based Alliant offers exceptionally easy membership terms and a good interest rate. (See our Alliant review for more details.)

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

NerdWallet has rated this bank:

Capital+One
Read full review
on NerdWallet
Capital One’s well-regarded apps and digital tools can help you track your financial goals. A feature called My Savings Goals lets you set a target, like $500 for “holiday gifts.” Plug in the amount you want to set aside each week or month, and the tool calculates when you’ll reach your goal. You can also open multiple accounts easily and give them nicknames such as “Vacations only.” There’s no monthly fee or minimum balance requirement. Your deposits earn a variable APY of 1%. If organizing your savings into separate goals sounds like a strategy that would work well for you, Capital One could be a wise choice. For balances of $10,000 or higher, Capital One’s money market account pays more — 1.60% APY. (Read our Capital One 360 review.)

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» Interested in getting money from banks? See NerdWallet’s best bank account promotions and bonuses

Spencer Tierney is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: spencer@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @SpencerNerd.

Updated April 2, 2018


METHODOLOGY

To determine the best accounts, we took a close look at 70 financial institutions, including 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, America First Credit Union, American Express, 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, Chime, CIT, Citibank, Citizens Bank, Comerica Bank, Commerce Bank, Connexus Credit Union, Consumers Credit Union, Discover Bank, EverBank, Fidelity, Fifth Third Bank, First Citizens Bank, First National Bank, First Tech Federal Credit Union, GoBank, Golden 1 Credit Union, GS Bank, HSBC Bank USA, Huntington Bank, KeyBank, M&T Bank, Navy Federal Credit Union, Pentagon Federal Credit Union, PNC, PurePoint Financial, Qapital, 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, Varo, Wells Fargo, Woodforest National Bank, and Zions Bank.

How we rate banks and credit unions