Best Bank or Credit Union for CDs

How we picked the companies to evaluate:

We took a close look at over 80 financial institutions, including the largest U.S. retail banks based on assets and internet search traffic; the nation’s largest credit unions, based on assets and membership; 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. Some of the providers are NerdWallet partners, but this did not influence our selection of the winner.

How we chose the winner:

Financial institutions that offer certificates of deposit were rated on the following factors: 1-year APY (contributed to 30% of the rating), 3-year APY (40%), 5-year APY (20%) and minimum opening deposit (10%). In case of a tie, banks were compared by category in the following order until one institution remained:
  • Overall bank star rating.
  • Banking experience.
  • 6-month CD rates.
  • Early withdrawal penalty.
  • Presence of flexible CD options (e.g., step-up CDs, Raise Your Rate CDs, etc.).

How we verified our data:

NerdWallet writers and editors confirmed fees, rates, policies and other key features on each financial institution’s website. If an institution’s website was missing information, we contacted a representative directly for confirmation.