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Popular Direct Review 2024

Updated January 2, 2024
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At a glance

3.8
Rating: 3.8 stars out of 5
Bankrate Score
Caret Down

CDs

Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Savings

Rating: 4.8 stars out of 5

About Bankrate Score

Overview

Popular Direct is best for anyone looking for an online savings account and CDs that pay top-notch yields. Customers thinking about signing up for Popular Direct should be comfortable completely banking online, since there’s no ATM access to withdraw your cash. On that note, it’s important to point out that Popular Direct’s mobile app has received very low ratings, which may be a pain point considering if you must bank solely online with Popular Direct.

Highlights

  • High APY
  • Top CD Rates
Sponsored offers
Info

These are sponsored offers rated highly by us for competitive rates, fees, and minimums.

Bank logo
Member FDIC
Savings Account
4.25
%
APY
APY
Info
As of 5/26/2024
Rating: 4.4 stars out of 5
$1
Min. balance for APY
View offer Arrow Right
Promoted offer:
Bank logo
Member FDIC
Savings Account
5.00
%
APY
APY
Info
As of 5/26/2024
Rating: 4.9 stars out of 5
$0
Min. balance for APY
View offer Arrow Right
Promoted offer: Plus, no monthly fees and unlimited free external transfers
Bank logo
Member FDIC
Savings Account
5.15
%
APY
APY
Info
As of 5/26/2024
Rating: 5 stars out of 5
$0
Min. balance for APY
View offer Arrow Right
Promoted offer:

Overall

Popular Direct is an online bank that pays highly competitive rates on its certificates of deposit (CDs) and savings account. It does impose relatively steep minimum deposit requirements, however, and its product offerings do not include a money market or checking account.

Pros

  • Checkmark

    Popular Direct offers accounts with highly competitive rates.

  • Checkmark

    Any fees that are charged are relatively easy to avoid.

Cons

  • There is no ATM access; funds can only be accessed electronically.

  • The mobile app has limited capabilities and low customer ratings.

  • Checking and money market accounts are not offered.

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Popular Direct banking products

4.8
/5
Rating: 4.8 stars out of 5
See methodology Compare savings rates
SCORE BREAKDOWN
APY offering:
5.15%
Rating: 5 stars out of 5
5/5
Info
Minimum balance to earn interest:
$100.00
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
4/5
Info
Monthly service fee:
$0.00
Rating: 5 stars out of 5
5/5
Info
Minimum balance to avoid fee:
$0.00
Rating: 5 stars out of 5
5/5
Info
Access to funds:
Good
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
4/5
Info
FEATURES
Invest Rate
5.15% APY
Info
Loan
$100 minimum deposit to open

Popular Direct savings overview

Popular Direct’s savings account earns one of the highest annual percentage yields (APYs) available nationwide. The account requires a $100 minimum deposit and there’s no monthly fee.

Popular Direct doesn’t include an ATM card with its savings account, so you’ll need to make an external transfer to access the funds. Additionally, you can add money to the account with your phone by using mobile check deposit.

Pros

  • Checkmark

    Popular Direct offers a top-notch APY.

  • Checkmark

    There is no monthly service fee.

  • Checkmark

    The minimum deposit required to open the account is low.

Cons

  • No ATM card is provided.

  • See how rates for this account have changed over time. Interact with the trend lines to view APY by date.

Compare Offer
Sponsored Offer
Info

This is a sponsored offer rated 4 stars or higher for competitive rate, fees, and minimums.

Bank logo
Member FDIC
Savings Account
4.25
%
APY
APY
Info
As of 5/26/2024
Rating: 4.4 stars out of 5
Info
$1
Min balance for APY
Promoted offer:

Bank fees

Fee Charged?
Overdraft fee $10
Non-sufficient funds fee None
Monthly maintenance fee None
Out-of-network ATM fee None
Excessive transaction fee None

Customer experience

Customer support. Customer service can be reached over the phone between 7:30 a.m. and midnight ET Monday through Friday, and between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. on weekends.

Mobile app. Popular Direct’s mobile app allows for basic account management, including viewing your account balance, transferring money between internal accounts, and depositing funds remotely. Overall, the app receives very low user ratings on the Google Play and the Apple App stores. The Popular Direct savings account does not come with an ATM card, so customers who want to deposit or withdraw money will need to rely on methods like external transfers and mobile deposit capture.

Customers have additional capabilities when logged onto the bank’s website, such as setting up account alerts, accessing e-statements and transferring money between external accounts.

About Popular Direct

Popular Direct is an online bank that was launched in July 2016. It offers CDs and a savings account that are opened through federally insured regional bank Popular Bank.

Popular Bank, an affiliate of Banco Popular de Puerto Rico, was formerly known as Banco Popular North America. Its parent company, Popular Inc., was founded in 1893. The financial institution serves customers in the United States, Puerto Rico, Latin America and the Caribbean.

How Popular Direct compares to other banks

Compare different account types offered by Popular Direct. Annual percentage yields (APYs) shown were updated between May 19, 2024 and May 25, 2024.

Selected bank
Popular Direct savings account
Popular Direct Logo
Member FDIC
Bankrate score
Rating: 4.8 stars out of 5
4.8
Info
Most comparable
LendingClub Bank savings account
LendingClub Bank Logo
Member FDIC
Bankrate score
Rating: 4.9 stars out of 5
4.9
Info
Read review
Caret Down
Bankrate score
Info
Read review
APY
Info
5.15% 5.00%
Minimum balance for APY
$100.00 $0.00
Estimated earnings
Info
$1,288 $1,250
Popular Direct’s high-yield savings account earns a rate that’s tough to beat, and the $100 minimum required opening deposit is manageable. The account allows for mobile check deposit, although an ATM card is not included. LendingClub Bank offers a High-Yield Savings Account that has a top-tier APY. You’ll only need $100 to open this account, and it doesn’t charge any monthly service fees.
  • Popular Direct’s savings account earns a top-notch APY.
  • There’s no monthly service fee, and the minimum deposit to open the account is low.
  • LendingClub Bank offers a savings account with a very competitive yield.
  • You only need a minimum of $100 to open a LendingClub savings account.
  • There are no monthly fees.
    N/A
  • The account does not come with an ATM card.
  • An early account closing fee of $25 is charged when you close the account within 180 days of opening it.
  • Some other banks don’t require a minimum opening deposit for their savings accounts.
  • Accounts can only be opened online.
    N/A
APY offering:
5.15%
5/5
Info
Minimum balance to earn interest:
$100.00
4/5
Info
Monthly service fee:
$0.00
5/5
Info
Minimum balance to avoid fee:
$0.00
5/5
Info
Access to funds:
Good
4/5
Info
APY offering:
5.00%
5/5
Info
Minimum balance to earn interest:
$0.00
5/5
Info
Monthly service fee:
$0.00
5/5
Info
Minimum balance to avoid fee:
$0.00
5/5
Info
Access to funds:
Great
5/5
Info
Info
Info
Info
Info
Info
Bankrate does not currently track additional product details for this bank.

Popular Direct vs. CIT Bank

Both Popular Direct and CIT Bank are online-only institutions. CIT offers a wider range of deposit accounts over Popular Direct, offering multiple types of CDs, savings, money market and checking accounts. (Popular Direct only offers one savings account and various CDs.) This makes CIT Bank the better choice if you’re looking to consolidate your finances under one roof. 

The yields at both banks are comparable. Popular Direct CDs tend to have consistently higher yields regardless of the term when compared to CIT Bank. However, you’ll need $10,000 on hand to open those Popular Direct CDs, whereas CIT Bank requires just $1,000 to open a standard CD. Likewise, Popular Direct’s savings account offers a higher yield than CIT Bank’s Savings Connect account. 

All this noted, it’s important to mention that CIT Bank generally offers a better online-only experience. The CIT Bank app has much higher user ratings on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store when compared to Popular Direct.

Popular Direct FAQs

Review methodology

With so many financial institutions to choose from, it can be hard to know who to trust. Bankrate’s ever-growing list of bank and credit union reviews is updated regularly. Our editorial team analyzes and reviews each institution across deposit products such as savings accounts, checking accounts, certificates of deposit (CDs) and money market accounts (MMAs). Banks are rated by important factors such as offered interest rates, fees, minimum balance requirements, access to funds and more.

We assign a score to each type of account and its features, weigh them carefully based on importance to account holders and determine an overall score. Read our full review methodology.