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Ratings Methodology for Banks and Credit Unions

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NerdWallet’s overall ratings for banks and credit unions are weighted averages of several categories: checking, savings, certificates of deposit or credit union share certificates, customer experience and overdraft fees.

Factors we consider, depending on the category, include rates and fees, ATM and branch access, account features and limits, user-facing technology, customer service and innovation.

Ratings are rounded to the nearest half-star.

What the ratings mean

5 stars out of 5 — Among the very best.
4.5 stars out of 5 — Very good; only minor caveats for most customers.
4 stars out of 5 — Good; issues that might make a difference to some customers.
3.5 stars out of 5 — Fair; make sure strengths and weaknesses are a good match for you.
3 stars out of 5 — Poor; proceed with great caution.
2.5 stars out of 5 (or below) — Best to avoid.