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8 Best Money Market Account Rates December 2018

Dec. 3, 2018
Banking, Savings Accounts
NerdWallet adheres to strict standards of editorial integrity to help you make decisions with confidence. Some of the products we feature are from partners. Here’s how we make money.
We adhere to strict standards of editorial integrity. Some of the products we feature are from our partners. Here’s how we make money.

The best money market rates let you build your account balance while keeping your cash safe. Just remember that when it comes to interest rates, high-yield savings accounts may be just as good — or better.

What is a money market account?

A money market account is a type of savings account that often requires a minimum deposit, but may offer a debit card and the ability to write checks. Weigh your options: High-yield savings with rates that beat money market accounts mean you’ll come out ahead in the long run, and the best savings accounts have low to no minimum deposits.

» Curious about the difference between money market accounts, basic savings and CDs? Check out NerdWallet’s primer on money market accounts.

Best money market rates December 2018

To help you compare, we show high-yield savings options alongside top money market account rates. Here are our favorites:

Capital One

at Capital One,

Member, FDIC

Capital One 360 Money Market Account

4.5 NerdWallet rating
Goldman Sachs Bank USA

at Goldman Sachs Bank USA,

Member, FDIC

Marcus by Goldman Sachs Online Savings Account

4.0 NerdWallet rating
Citizens Access

at Citizens Access,

Member, FDIC

Citizens Access Savings Account

4.0 NerdWallet rating
CIT Bank

at CIT Bank,

Member, FDIC

CIT Bank Money Market Account

4.0 NerdWallet rating
Discover

at Discover,

Member, FDIC

Discover Bank Money Market Account

4.5 NerdWallet rating
BBVA Compass

at BBVA Compass,

Member, FDIC

BBVA Compass Money Market Account

3.5 NerdWallet rating
Barclays

at Barclays,

Member, FDIC

Barclays Online Savings

4.0 NerdWallet rating
Synchrony Bank

at Synchrony Bank,

Member, FDIC

Synchrony High Yield Savings

4.0 NerdWallet rating

Sallie Mae Money Market Account

4.0 NerdWallet rating

TIAA Bank* Money Market Account

Overall bank rating:
3.5 NerdWallet rating
*formerly known as EverBank

Capital One 360 Money Market Account

2.00% APY
$10,000 minimum deposit

Capital One

at Capital One,

Member, FDIC

Capital One’s fee-free 360 Money Market account provides a high rate of 2.00% as well as access to digital tools to help you create goals and automate savings.

To get that rate, however, you’ll need a balance of $10,000 or more. Otherwise, you’ll have to settle for a rate of 0.85% on balances up to $9,999. Still, that’s better than the national average rate on money market accounts. There’s no minimum deposit required to open an account.

This money market account was named one of the best in NerdWallet’s 2018 Bank Awards.

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Marcus by Goldman Sachs Online Savings Account

2.05% APY
No minimum deposit

Goldman Sachs Bank USA

at Goldman Sachs Bank USA,

Member, FDIC

Marcus by Goldman Sachs has an online savings account with a rate that’s better than that of many money market options. You need to deposit only $1 to take advantage of the top rate, and there’s no minimum to open an account.

The account doesn’t charge transaction fees, but Marcus doesn’t offer checking accounts or ATM access. You’ll need an external account to withdraw money, so it might not be your best bet if you need to move cash regularly.

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Citizens Access Savings Account

2.25% APY
$5,000 minimum deposit

Citizens Access

at Citizens Access,

Member, FDIC

With an APY of 2.25%, Citizens Access’ savings account has one of the best interest rates on offer among savings accounts or money market accounts.

Though the $5,000 minimum balance to earn the APY is steeper than what is required at some other banks, the account comes with no monthly fees that you’ll have to worry about, and Citizens’ CDs are also top of the line.

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CIT Bank Money Market and Savings Builder accounts

1.85% APY
2.25% APY
$100 minimum deposit

CIT Bank

at CIT Bank,

Member, FDIC

What’s notable about CIT Bank is the great APYs on both its new money market account — 1.85% — and its Savings Builder account — 2.25%. There’s a minimum opening deposit of $100 for either account. That’s a reasonable minimum for a money market account. For the Savings Builder, as its name implies, you’ll also need to deposit $100 monthly to earn the top interest rate. Neither account has a monthly maintenance fee.

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Discover Bank Money Market Account

1.85% APY
$2,500 minimum deposit

Discover

at Discover,

Member, FDIC

Discover’s money market account has an attractive 1.85% APY on balances below $100,000. If you have more to deposit, the rate is 1.90%.

The bank, which operates online, has over 60,000 ATMs in its network. In addition, the bank has high ratings for its mobile app on iOS and Android devices. With a Discover money market account, you can make debit card purchases and write checks, though you’re limited to six of these types of transactions each month.

The minimum opening deposit for a money market account is $2,500. If your balance drops below that amount — say, from withdrawals — there’s a $10 monthly maintenance fee. If you don’t have that much to deposit, or you don’t need to write checks or use a debit card, Discover’s online savings account is an option that has no minimum deposit and a better yield at 2.00%. (To see how Discover’s savings account compares, check out the best high-yield online savings accounts.)

This money market account was named one of the best in NerdWallet’s 2018 Bank Awards.

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BBVA Compass Money Market Account

1.80% APY
no minimum deposit

BBVA Compass

at BBVA Compass,

Member, FDIC

With an APY of 1.80% for the first year, BBVA Compass’ money market account is among the more competitive accounts in the landscape. There’s no minimum balance to qualify for the rate, and the minimum opening deposit is a manageable $25. Be aware that there is a $15 monthly fee on the account, avoided with a balance of at least $10,000 or with recurring transfers from a BBVA checking account.

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Barclays Online Savings

2.05% APY
No minimum deposit

Barclays

at Barclays,

Member, FDIC

Barclays Online Savings’ high rate is strong incentive to park your cash with the bank. There’s also no minimum deposit or monthly fee. Be aware, though, there’s no checking option and no ATM network or branches.

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Synchrony High Yield Savings

2.05% APY
No minimum deposit

Synchrony Bank

at Synchrony Bank,

Member, FDIC

Synchrony doesn’t offer a checking account, but you do get a high yield savings account with no minimum deposit. You also get a bank card and access to free ATMs. If ATM operators charge a fee, Synchrony reimburses up to $5 a month. You can also earn perks, such as discounts on car rentals and hotels. The savings account is separate from Synchrony’s money market account, which also has no monthly fee or minimum balance required. However, the rate is 1.20% APY, which is attractive, but lower than Synchrony’s high yield savings.

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Sallie Mae Bank Money Market Account

2.20% APY
No minimum deposit

When you think of this institution, student loans may come to mind. But Sallie Mae Bank has a money market account that pays good rates, has no monthly fees and includes the ability to write checks. Note that federal regulations limit the number of checks you can write on money market accounts to six each month. If you try to write more, you’ll be charged a fee.

Along with the money market account, Sallie Mae Bank savings accounts and CDs also have attractive rates.

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TIAA Bank Money Market Account

2.15% APY
$5,000 minimum deposit

TIAA Bank, formerly known as EverBank, offers a generous 2.15% introductory rate on its money market account for balances up to $250,000. The special rate lasts a year before its standard money market rate of 1.10% kicks in for balances of less than $10,000. You need at least $5,000 to open the account.

TIAA Bank doesn’t charge any monthly maintenance or ATM fees. If you maintain a balance of $5,000, the bank reimburses any ATM fees charged by other banks in the U.S.

This money market account was named one of the best in NerdWallet’s 2018 Bank Awards.

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» If you’re looking for higher interest rates and can afford to stash your money for one or more years, check out our best CD rates for this month

Other top accounts

Here are a few other exceptional choices for money market and savings accounts. If you are looking around for the best savings vehicle for you, they’re worth checking out.

  • PurePoint Financial Online Savings, 2.15% APY (read full review)
  • Popular Direct Plus Savings Account, 2.36% APY
  • UFB Direct Money Market Account, 1.60% APY (read full review)
  • Axos Bank High Yield Money Market Account, 1.05% APY (read full review)
  • FNBO Direct Online Savings Account, 2.00% APY (read full review)

Top savings and money market rates 2018

Bank or Credit UnionAPYMinimum Balance
Citizens Access Online Savings
Account
2.25% $5,000
Sallie Mae Bank Savings Account2.20%None
Barclays Online Savings2.05%None
Synchrony High Yield Savings2.05%None
CIT Bank Money Market Account1.85%None, but minimum $100 to open
Capital One 360 Money Market Account2.00%$10,000. Otherwise 0.85% APY
BBVA Compass Money Market Account1.80%None
TIAA Bank Money Market Account2.15% $5,000
Discover Bank Money Market Account1.85%$2,500
Marcus by Goldman Sachs Online Savings Account2.05%None

METHODOLOGY

We took a close look at over 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. We rated them on criteria including annual percentage yields, minimum balances, fees, digital experience and more.

Financial institutions surveyed include: Alaska USA Federal Credit Union, Alliant Credit Union, Ally Bank, America First Credit Union, American Express, Aspiration, Associated Bank, Axos Bank, Bank5 Connect, Bank7, Bank of America, 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 Access, Citizens Bank, Comerica Bank, Commerce Bank, Connexus Credit Union, Consumers Credit Union, Discover Bank, E-Trade, Fidelity, Fifth Third Bank, First National Bank, First Tech Federal Credit Union, GoBank, Golden 1 Credit Union, GS Bank, HSBC Bank USA, Huntington Bank, KeyBank, MetaBank, M&T Bank, Moven, Navy Federal Credit Union, Pentagon Federal Credit Union, PNC, Popular Direct, PurePoint Financial, Radius Bank, Redneck Bank, Regions Bank, Sallie Mae Bank, Santander Bank, SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union, Security Service Federal Credit Union, Service Credit Union, Simple, State Employees’ Credit Union of North Carolina, State Farm Bank, Suncoast Credit Union, SunTrust Bank, Synchrony Bank, TCF Bank, TD Bank,  TIAA Bank, Union Bank, UFB Direct, USAA, U.S. Bank, Varo, Wells Fargo and Zions Bank.

How we rate banks and credit unions

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