If the returns on the best savings accounts won’t do, look toward a CD.

Certificates of deposit are safe vehicles for investors. If you keep your funds locked up for an entire term, you can expect to end up with your initial deposit plus interest.

A one-year CD won’t pay the highest rates in the market. But when your account comes due, you’ll be able to reinvest your funds in a CD with a more attractive yield.

The best 1-year CD rates pay more than four times the national average of 0.38 percent APY, according to Bankrate’s most recent national survey of banks and thrifts.

Today’s top nationally available 1-year CDs pay 1.6 percent APY. That’s not enough to retire on, but it’s a good vehicle to meet short-term financial obligations (like saving for a down payment on a mortgage) that can let your money grow near the rate of inflation without having to worry about missing out on better deals that arrive after you invest.

Finding the best 1-year CD rates

CD rates remain low by historical standards, but you can find significantly better deals than at the big national bank that handles your checking account if you’re willing to shop around. Researching rates at several local banks, as well as reputable online banks, will usually yield the best rate.

Here are the top nationally available 1-year CD rates. Compare these offers then calculate how much interest you would earn when your CD matures.

Best 1-year CD rates
Institution APY Minimum deposit
Pacific National Bank 1.60% $1,000
EverBank 1.56% $1,000
Popular Direct 1.55% $10,000
M.Y. Safra Bank 1.53% $5,000
First Internet Bank of Indiana 1.52% $1,000

Top account details

  • Pacific National Bank is headquartered in Miami, Florida. It’s a former subsidiary of Banco Del Pacifico Ecuador. It earned four out of five stars from Safe & Sound, which measures the financial health of banks and credit unions throughout the United States.
  • EverBank is based in Jacksonville, Florida and has a series of branches. But it’s primarily known as an online bank. It was established in 1961. EverBank earned three out of five stars from Safe & Sound.
  • Popular Direct is a subsidiary of Popular Inc., a financial services firm serving the United States, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. Popular Inc. was founded in 1893. The bank earned five out of five stars from Safe & Sound.
  • M.Y. Safra Bank is based in New York City. Initially established as T. Rowe Price Savings Bank, it changed its name and moved from Baltimore, Maryland in 2013. The bank earned four out of five stars from Safe & Sound.
  • First Internet Bank of Indiana, based in Fishers, Indiana, was founded in 1999. The online-only bank serves customers across the country. It earned four out of five stars from Safe & Sound.

Keep your goals in mind

A 1-year CD is only useful if you don’t plan to touch your savings for a full 12 months. Breaking the contract you made with a bank or credit union and dipping into your account before it matures could cost you quite a bit of interest.

Something that’s more liquid — like a money market account — could be a better place for your funds. You’ll be stuck with a lower interest rate, but you’ll have the flexibility to use your savings to cover a last-minute trip or an emergency expense.

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