American Express National Bank Review: Checking, Savings and CDs

American Express National Bank, Member FDIC is an online bank that offers strong checking and savings accounts, as well as certificates of deposit that are worth considering.
Margarette Burnette
Ruth Sarreal
By Ruth Sarreal and  Margarette Burnette 
Edited by Tony Armstrong

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American Express National Bank
Learn more

at American Express National Bank, Member FDIC

  • Savings
  • Certificates of deposit
  • Checking
  • Customer experience
  • Overdraft fees

Overall institution rating

4.0

NerdWallet rating 
The bottom line:

The FDIC-insured American Express National Bank is an online bank that offers competitive accounts. Its savings account has a solid annual percentage yield, and its certificates of deposit are worth considering. The bank also offers a rewards checking account with a strong interest rate, but you have to be an American Express card holder to open one, and you won’t be able to make cash deposits.

Best for: Those who want to earn competitive yields across checking, savings and CD accounts; are comfortable with an online-only banking experience; and won't need to make cash deposits.

Pros

  • A $0 monthly fee.
  • Competitive rate on savings accounts.
  • Large, nationwide ATM network.
  • No minimum opening deposits.
  • 24/7 customer service by phone.

Cons

  • No overdraft protection program.
  • No cash deposit.
  • No branch access.

Full review

Savings

American Express® High Yield Savings Account

Savings

Member FDIC

4.5

/5
 NerdWallet rating 
APY
4.25%
With $1 min. balance for APY
Bonus
N/A
Learn more

at American Express National Bank

At a 4.25% APY (annual percentage yield) as of 04/25/2024, American Express offers an interest rate on savings that is competitive with other online accounts. You won’t have to worry about monthly fees, making a minimum opening deposit or maintaining a high balance in your account to earn the rate.

To fund your savings account, you'll have to link your current bank account, set up direct deposit, mail a check to the bank’s Salt Lake City office or deposit a check via the mobile site. American Express doesn't accept cash deposits.

» Looking for banks with the highest rates? See our list of the best high-yield online savings accounts

Certificates of deposit

American Express® CD
American Express® CD

CD

Member FDIC

3.0

/5
 NerdWallet rating 
1-year APY
4.35%
3-year APY
3.00%
5-year APY
3.00%
Minimum deposit
$0

You’ll find solid CD rates for some of the CD terms offered by American Express, including a 3.00% APY for a 60-month term. (To see high rates at other banks, check out our list of the best CD rates.)

Banks often require some deposit amount, whether hundreds or even thousands of dollars, to open a certificate of deposit, but that’s not the case at American Express. The bank doesn’t have a minimum balance requirement to open a CD.

» Curious about federally insured accounts? Read more about the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. and FDIC insurance

Checking

American Express Rewards Checking
American Express Rewards Checking

Checking

Member FDIC

5.0

/5
 NerdWallet rating 
Monthly fee
$0
APY
1.00%
Bonus
N/A

The American Express Rewards Checking Account, also known as Amex Rewards Checking, is available only to consumers who have had an American Express credit card for at least three months.

The new American Express checking account earns a 1.00% APY on all balances, which is competitive with what you’ll find with strong rewards checking accounts. It doesn’t require a minimum deposit to open, and there are no minimum balance requirements or monthly fees. Checking account holders get access to ATMs in the MoneyPass and Allpoint networks, but won’t be able to make cash deposits.

In addition to interest on balances, you’ll earn a rewards point for every $2 spent on eligible purchases using your debit card. You can redeem those points for a deposit into your checking account. If your existing American Express credit card is linked to the American Express Membership Rewards program, you can redeem debit card points for all the options offered for your credit card. Choices for points redemption include travel bookings, hotel and restaurant gift cards, and purchases from various retailers such as Amazon, Best Buy, Rite Aid and Saks Fifth Avenue.

» Want to compare options? See our list of the best online checking accounts

Customer experience

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

Rates and fees are clearly displayed on the bank's website, and a robust FAQ section answers many questions that you’ll likely have about the accounts.

As an online bank, American Express National Bank doesn't have any branches. If you need to talk to someone, support is available around the clock by phone, and customers can also log in to the site to chat with support.

Overdraft fees

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

American Express Rewards Checking doesn’t offer overdraft protection. However, like many other banks now, it also doesn’t charge overdraft fees. If a transaction will overdraw your account, the bank will likely decline it. If your balance becomes negative (from a subscription auto payment, for example), you’ll need to bring your balance back to positive when the bank notifies you. The bank could close your account if you fail to do so.

American Express says: "Editorial Note: This content is not provided by American Express. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by American Express.”

How does American Express National Bank compare?

Current Product

NerdWallet rating 

4.5

/5
NerdWallet rating 

4.5

/5
NerdWallet rating 

4.5

/5

APY 

4.25%

With $1 min. balance for APY

APY 

4.60%

With $0 min. balance for APY

APY 

5.00%

With $5,000 min. balance for APY

Bonus 

N/A

Bonus 

$300

Earn up to $300 with direct deposit. Terms apply.

Bonus 

N/A

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at American Express National Bank

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at SoFi Bank, N.A.

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at CIT Bank

Methodology

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, banking 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. The stars represent ratings from poor (one star) to excellent (five stars). Ratings are rounded to the nearest half-star. How we rate banks, credit unions and other financial service providers.