A certificate of deposit typically pays a higher yield the longer its term, which can vary from weeks to months to years.
A five-year CD, for example, frequently pays a higher rate than a one-year CD. The trade-off, of course, is that you must leave your money untouched five times longer to earn the higher annual percentage yield (APY) or face a penalty.
Three-year CDs strike a balance between a higher yield and a shorter term, compared to a five-year CD. Three-year CDs also typically offer higher yields than the rates paid on money market accounts. But as with most CDs, a penalty applies for withdrawals from a three-year CD before the term ends.
Summary of best 3-year CD rates for July 2022
- Highest Rate: Bread Savings (formerly Comenity Direct) – 3.25% APY, $1,500 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Popular Direct – 02% APY, $10,000 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Quontic Bank – 2.81% APY, $500 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Limelight Bank – 2.75% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Lending Club – 2.75% APY, $2,500 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Sallie Mae Bank – 2.75% APY, $2,500 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Pentagon Federal Credit Union – 2.60% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
- High Rate: First Internet Bank of Indiana – 2.58% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Bethpage Federal Credit Union – 2.55% APY, $50 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Security Service Federal Credit Union – 2.55% APY, $25,000 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Barclays – 2.50% APY, $0 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Capital One – 2.50% APY, $0 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Synchrony Bank – 2.50% APY, $0 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Marcus by Goldman Sachs – 2.50% APY, $500 minimum deposit
- High Rate: TAB Bank – 2.50% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Discover Bank – 2.50% APY, $2,500 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Brio Direct – 2.45% APY, $500 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Citizens Access – 2.40% APY, $5,000 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Amerant Bank – 2.40% APY, $10,000 minimum deposit*
- High Rate: BMO Harris – 2.35% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit**
- High Rate: TIAA Bank – 2.30% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Live Oak Bank – 2.30% APY, $2,500 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Ally Bank – 2.25% APY, $0 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Navy Federal Credit Union – 2.25% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
- High Rate: Alliant Credit Union – 2.20% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
Note: Annual percentage yields (APYs) shown are as of June 29, 2022. Bankrate’s editorial team updates this information regularly, typically biweekly. APYs may have changed since they were last updated and may vary by region for some products.
*Rate not available in Florida or Texas.
**Rate not available in Arizona, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri and Wisconsin.
Today’s top, widely available three-year CD pays 3.25 percent APY — higher than some of the best four-year CD rates. A CD that matures in three years could be a good investment for midterm financial obligations, like a down payment on a car.
Include online banks, credit unions and other banks in your search to find the best three-year CD rates.
Many savers tend to stick with the same bank that provides their checking account. But that can be a mistake, especially at large national banks, where deposit rates tend to fall well short of what some smaller institutions offer.
Bankrate’s guide to choosing the right CD rate
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Methodology for Bankrate’s Best CD Rates
At Bankrate, we strive to help you make smarter financial decisions. We follow strict guidelines to ensure that our editorial content is unbiased and not influenced by advertisers. Our editorial team receives no direct compensation from advertisers and our content is thoroughly fact-checked to ensure accuracy.
Bankrate regularly surveys around 70 widely available financial institutions, made up of the biggest banks and credit unions, as well as a number of popular online banks.
To find the best CDs, our editorial team analyzes various factors, such as: APY, the minimum deposit needed to earn that APY (or to open the CD) and whether it is broadly available. All of the accounts on this page are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) or the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA).
When selecting the best CD for you, consider the purpose of the money and when you’ll need access to these funds to help you avoid early withdrawal penalties.
Compare: Best 3-year CD rates
Highest Rate: Bread Savings (formerly Comenity Direct) – 3.25% APY, $1,500 minimum deposit
Bread Savings, formerly Comenity Direct, is an online bank that offers a high-yield savings account and five terms of CDs ranging from one year to five years.
Bread Savings is part of Comenity Capital Bank, which is a unit of Bread Financial.
High Rate: Popular Direct – 3.02% APY, $10,000 minimum deposit
Popular Direct CDs require a minimum $10,000 deposit, making them best suited to established savers. The CDs come in terms ranging from 30 days to six years.
Popular Direct’s High-Rise savings account offers a competitive yield and requires a $5,000 minimum deposit.
High Rate: Quontic Bank – 2.81% APY, $500 minimum deposit
Quontic Bank was established in 2005 and is based in New York. It offers five terms of CDs, ranging from six months to three years, which can be opened with as little as $500.
In addition to its CDs, Quontic Bank also offers money market, high-yield savings and checking accounts.
High Rate: Limelight Bank – 2.75% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
Limelight Bank is a division of Capital Community Bank, with headquarters in Provo, Utah. It offers four terms of online CDs: six months, one year, 18 months and three years. It offers no other bank accounts.
Limelight uses deposits to focus on funding eco-friendly initiatives, such as providing loans for solar projects, according to its website.
High Rate: LendingClub – 2.75% APY, $2,500 minimum deposit
LendingClub is a digital financial company based in San Francisco. It offers CDs in five fixed terms: one year, 18 months, two years, three years and five years. CD rates are competitive and the minimum deposit to open a CD is $2,500. It does not offer no-penalty CDs or other specialty CDs.
LendingClub also offers checking and savings accounts, personal loans, mortgages and business banking products and loans.
High Rate: Sallie Mae Bank – 2.75% APY, $2,500 minimum deposit
Sallie Mae Bank was established in 2005 and became a stand-alone consumer banking business in 2014.
The Salt Lake City-based bank offers 11 terms of CDs, along with savings and money market accounts. All deposit products pay competitive yields. Sallie Mae’s other financial products include credit cards and student loans.
High Rate: Pentagon Federal Credit Union – 2.60% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
Pentagon Federal Credit Union was established in 1935 and is headquartered in McLean, Virginia. It has more than 2 million members.
PenFed has nine terms of CDs, ranging from six months to seven years.
High Rate: First Internet Bank of Indiana – 2.58% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
First Internet Bank of Indiana is an FDIC-insured financial institution that operates online and has no branches. It opened in 1999 and offers products in all 50 states.
First Internet Bank offers eight terms of CDs, a money market savings account with a competitive yield, a savings account and two checking accounts.
High Rate: Bethpage Federal Credit Union – 2.55% APY; $50 minimum deposit to open
Bethpage Federal Credit Union has more than 400,000 members and is based in Bethpage, New York.
Nine terms of CDs are offered, ranging from three months to five years. Bethpage also offers a 39-month bump-up CD, as well as checking accounts, savings accounts, loans and other financial products.
High Rate: Security Service Federal Credit Union – 2.55% APY, $25,000 minimum deposit
Security Service Federal Credit Union was founded in 1956 to serve the needs of members of the U.S. Air Force Security Service Command and their families.
Based in San Antonio, it offers CD terms ranging from three months to seven years. It also offers checking and savings accounts, mortgages, auto loans and credit cards.
High Rate: Barclays – 2.50% APY, $0 minimum deposit
Barclays is a global bank that was founded in London more than 300 years ago. It introduced the world to the first ATM machine in 1967.
Barclays has no minimum balance requirements to open a CD online and offers nine terms, ranging from three months to five years.
High Rate: Capital One – 2.50% APY, $0 minimum deposit
Capital One is an online bank that also operates branches. The McLean, Virginia-based bank offers nine terms of regular CDs ranging from six months to five years, all of which require no minimum opening deposit.
High Rate: Synchrony Bank – 2.50% APY, $0 minimum deposit
Synchrony Bank offers competitive CD yields across 14 terms, including 10 terms that are less than two years. An 11-month no-penalty CD and a two-year bump-up CD are also available.
If Synchrony Bank receives your CD deposit within 15 days of opening the account and the CD rate increases, you’ll receive the higher rate.
The bank also offers a savings account and a money market account. The savings account features a competitive APY and has no minimum balance requirement.
High Rate: Marcus by Goldman Sachs – 2.50% APY, $500 minimum deposit
Marcus by Goldman Sachs is the consumer banking unit of Goldman Sachs Bank USA. Marcus offers nine terms of regular CDs and three no-penalty CD terms. A minimum deposit of $500 is required to open any CD and earn the posted APY.
High Rate: TAB Bank – 2.50% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
TAB Bank was established in 1998 in Ogden, Utah, as a banking service inside truck stops. TAB serves businesses and individual customers.
It offers CDs in eight terms, from six months to five years, along with several checking accounts, a couple of savings account options and a money market account.
High Rate: Discover Bank – 2.50% APY, $2,500 minimum deposit
Discover Bank may be known for its credit cards, but it also offers a wide selection of other banking products. It has been offering deposit products online since 2007.
Discover Bank offers CDs ranging in terms from three months to 10 years.
It also offers a savings account, a checking account and a money market account.
High Rate: Brio Direct – 2.45% APY, $500 minimum deposit
BrioDirect is an online division of Webster Bank. Its CDs, savings account and money market account earn competitive yields.
BrioDirect offers 11 terms of CDs ranging from 30 days to five years, all of which require a $500 minimum deposit to open and earn the disclosed APY. Within this range of terms, the two-year CD offers the highest APY.
High Rate: Citizens Access – 2.40% APY, $5,000 minimum deposit
Citizens Access launched in July 2018. It is an online bank and a division of Citizens Bank. It offers a competitive yield on its savings account and CDs. CD terms run from one year to five years. Citizens Access also offers an 11-month liquid (no penalty) CD.
All of its products require a $5,000 minimum deposit.
High Rate: Amerant Bank – 2.40% APY, $10,000 minimum deposit
Amerant Bank has 17 branches in South Florida and seven in Houston.
It offers competitive APYs on its online CDs, with terms ranging from three months to five years, but the yield listed for the three-year CD isn’t available in Florida and Texas. The $10,000 minimum to open a CD may be a tough requirement for some savers to meet.
High Rate: BMO Harris – 2.35% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
BMO Harris offers online accounts and operates more than 500 branches in Arizona, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri and Wisconsin. The bank is based in Chicago.
BMO Harris offers 10 CD terms ranging from three months to five years, each requiring a minimum $1,000 deposit to open. It also offers several CD Specials with very competitive rates. The competitive rates offered on CDs with terms six months and longer are unavailable to residents of states where BMO has branches.
High Rate: TIAA Bank – 2.30% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
TIAA Bank is a division of TIAA FSB and has 10 branches, all in Florida.
TIAA offers CD terms ranging from three months to five years. It also offers a bump rate CD, which allows a one-time rate bump should TIAA raise its rates. For customers with large deposits who need FDIC coverage that exceeds the $250,000 limit, TIAA Bank offers a service that spreads money around to a network of banks to expand insurance coverage.
High Rate: Live Oak Bank – 2.30% APY, $2,500 minimum deposit
Live Oak Bank was founded in 2008 and is based in Wilmington, North Carolina. It offers seven terms of CDs.
The online bank also offers a savings account that features a competitive yield, charges no monthly service fee and has no minimum balance requirement.
High Rate: Ally Bank – 2.25% APY, $0 minimum deposit
Ally Bank is an online-only bank and has no branches. It’s based in Sandy, Utah. Ally offers standard CDs in seven terms ranging from three months to five years, with no minimum deposit required to open.
Ally also offers a no-penalty CD and a Raise Your Rate CD, as well as checking, savings and money market accounts.
High Rate: Navy Federal Credit Union – 2.25% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
Navy Federal Credit Union has more than 11 million members and is the world’s largest credit union. It has its headquarters in Vienna, Virginia.
Membership at Navy Federal Credit Union is open to all Department of Defense and Coast Guard Active Duty, civilian, contract personnel, veterans and their families.
In addition to CDs, Navy Federal Credit Union offers checking and savings accounts, loans and credit cards.
High Rate: Alliant Credit Union – 2.20% APY, $1,000 minimum deposit
In 1935, what’s now Alliant Credit Union was founded as the United Airlines Employees’ Credit Union. Alliant currently has 600,000 members nationwide.
Alliant offers competitive APYs with low minimum balance requirements for CDs. Alliant also has traditional individual retirement account (IRA) CDs, Roth IRA CDs and SEP IRA CDs.
What is a 3-year CD?
A three-year CD is a deposit account in which you agree to keep the money in the account for three years. Yields can be higher than the national average earned from money market accounts and savings accounts.
Bankrate’s calculator can help you determine how much interest you could earn when your CD matures. Your principal is protected, so you don’t have to worry about stock market ups and downs. Plus, with a CD, your interest rate is locked in, so you also don’t have to worry about your yield decreasing.
Who should open a 3-year CD?
Opening a three-year CD might make sense for people who don’t need access to their money for at least three years. As a result, these accounts are ideal for midterm goals, like setting aside money for a car down payment. Getting a three-year CD could also be a good idea if you’re planning to build a CD ladder.
Search for the best three-year CD rates online and compare your options. If you’re looking for a higher yield, consider some of the lesser-known institutions willing to offer good interest rates to attract depositors.
Can you withdraw cash early?
When putting money into CDs, it’s important to read the fine print. After all, CDs come with restrictions dictating when you can withdraw your money.
In most cases, you’re not allowed to get your cash before the CD matures. With a three-year CD, that means keeping your money in the account for three years. If you do withdraw the money, there’s a good chance you’ll have to pay a penalty.
The penalty depends on the financial institution, and can vary widely. A penalty might be expressed as a certain number of months’ worth of interest or as a percentage of the principal. In some cases, that percentage of principal might be based on the entire amount in the CD, or it might only apply to the amount you withdraw early.
If you’re unsure that you can keep your money in the account for three years, consider other options. There are no-penalty CDs that won’t charge you for taking the money out early. However, no-penalty CDs often come with lower interest rates than those on conventional CDs.
Additionally, you can choose a six-month or one-year CD, instead of getting a three-year CD. You’ll be able to access your money earlier, but you’ll earn a lower yield.
3-year CD rate vs. other CD terms
A three-year CD rate often comes with a higher interest rate than CDs with shorter terms. Also, because there are liquidity restrictions on a CD, you’ll often see a higher yield on a CD than what you’d get with a traditional savings account or money market account, though savings and money market accounts provide easier access to your money.
Also, while a three-year CD can feature a higher interest rate than shorter-term CDs and liquid savings accounts, it often has a lower yield than what you’d see if you were willing to tie up your money for a longer term. For example, you might get a higher yield on a five-year CD than what’s available for a three-year CD.
Carefully consider your needs before putting your money in a CD. Be realistic about when you might need the money, based on your short- and medium-term financial goals. Knowing your needs will help you to make a better decision about the type of account that’s best for your money.
The best 3-year CD rates for July 2022
|Financial Institution||APY||Minimum Deposit|
|Bread Savings (formerly Comenity Direct)||3.25%||$1,500|
|Pentagon Federal Credit Union||2.60%||$1,000|
|First Internet Bank of Indiana||2.58%||$1,000|
|Bethpage Federal Credit Union||2.55%||$50|
|Security Service Federal Credit Union||2.55%||$25,000|
|Marcus by Goldman Sachs||2.50%||$500|
|Live Oak Bank||2.30%||$2,500|
|Navy Federal Credit Union||2.25%||$1,000|
|Alliant Credit Union||2.20%||$1,000|