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Understanding certificates of deposit

Certificates of deposit are safe vehicles for investing, especially valuable for the investor who is averse to risk. As the types of CDs available has expanded, finding the best one for your situation can sometimes be confusing. To cut the clutter, we've rounded up some of our more frequently asked questions about CDs with answers from our financial expert, Dr. Don.

  • Is the annual percentage yield, or APY, a good indicator of the return on a CD?
  • Is it wise to lock into a five-year CD when rates are rising?
  • Should I cash in my low-interest CD for a higher interest CD?
  • How are callable, bump-up and step-up CDs different?
  • What is the minimum deposit required for a jumbo CD?
  • What are brokerage CDs?
  • What is capitalized payout for interest earned on a CD?
  • What are tax-free CDs? How do they differ from traditional CDs?
  • How do you ladder CDs?
  • What's the difference between a liquid CD and a no-penalty CD?
  • Why won't some banks sell CDs out of state?
  • What does "early withdrawal penalty" mean?
  •'s corrections policy -- Updated: Nov. 17, 2005
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    1 yr CD 1.05%
    2 yr CD 1.16%
    5 yr CD 1.72%
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