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Top CD rates today: May 17, 2024 | What to know about CD rate trends now

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Key takeaways

  • The current leading CD rate across terms is 5.36% APY, offered on a one-year term.
  • In addition to choosing a CD based on APY, be sure to pick a term that suits your financial goals.
  • Competitive CDs are earning at least three times the national average rates for most terms.

Opening a fixed-rate certificate of deposit (CD) with a term of at least one year should give you peace of mind that your savings will continue to earn the same annual percentage yield (APY) should rates begin to retreat later this year. APYs on competitive CDs have been high as of late because they follow the federal funds rate, which is currently at a range of 5.25-5.50 percent — the highest it has been since early 2001. But with the Federal Reserve expected to lower rates later this year, CD APYs could eventually drop, in turn.

For today, the leading APY across CD terms is 5.36 percent, which is offered on a one-year CD from CIBC Bank USA. A $1,000 minimum deposit is required. You’ll find that many shorter terms are earning higher yields than longer ones in the current rate environment.

The table below shows top CD rates for the most common terms, as well as national averages and the amount you can earn in interest with a $5,000 deposit.

Today's best CD rates by term

CD term Institution offering top APY Highest APY National average APY Estimated earnings on $5,000 with top APY
3-month Popular Direct 5.30% 1.21% $65
6-month Popular Direct 5.30% 1.69% $131
9-month Forbright Bank 5.30% N/A $197
1-year CIBC Bank USA 5.36% 1.80% $268
18-month TAB Bank 5.00% 1.85% $380
2-year TAB Bank 4.80% 1.50% $492
3-year First Internet Bank of Indiana 4.61% 1.39% $724
4-year First Internet Bank of Indiana 4.45% 1.50% $951
5-year First Internet Bank of Indiana 4.50% 1.42% $1,231

Note: Annual percentage yields (APYs) shown are as of May 17, 2024. APYs for some products may vary by region.

N/A: Not available; Bankrate doesn’t track national averages for the 9-month CD term due to limited available data. Estimated earnings are based on the highest APYs and assume interest is compounded annually.

 

When is a CD a good idea?

A CD can be a good option when you find one with a competitive rate and you can afford to lock in the money for the entire term. Most CDs charge an early withdrawal penalty for taking out the money before the maturity date. An upside to such a penalty structure is you’ll be less tempted to withdraw the money early and use it for impulse purchases.

What the current rate environment means for CDs

In 2022 and 2023, the Federal Reserve raised its benchmark interest rate a total of 11 times, bringing its current target range to a 23-year high of 5.25-5.50 percent. However, the Fed has left rates unchanged for six straight meetings, due to inflation not slowing as quickly as it has in the past.

Yields on competitive savings accounts and CDs tend to move in lockstep with the Fed’s interest rate moves. As such, many banks increase their yields when the Fed raises rates, and they lower yields when the federal funds rate drops. While the Fed has held rates steady since July 2023, top CD APYs ended up peaking in late 2023 and have since been decreasing gradually.

Is it still a good time to open a CD? “Even though CD yields have pulled back a bit, you’re still able to lock in yields that are well in excess of inflation and do so for multiple years,” says Greg McBride, CFA, Bankrate’s chief financial analyst. “The declines will likely accelerate as we get closer to the Fed beginning to cut interest rates, so there is no sense in waiting.”

CD FAQs

Research methodology

Bankrate calculates and reports the national average APYs for various CD terms. Factored into national average rates are the competitive APYs commonly offered by online banks, along with the very low rates often found at large brick-and-mortar banks.

In June 2023, Bankrate updated its methodology that determines the national average CD rates. For the process, more than 500 banks and credit unions are now surveyed each week to generate the national averages. Among these institutions are those that are broadly available and offer high yields, as well as some of the nation’s largest banks.