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Savings Accounts

Best Bank for Savings Accounts: CIT Bank Review

When looking for the best bank for savings accounts you might run into a road block considering the national savings rate average currently hovers around 0.09 percent APY.

At that rate, if you deposit $1,000, after 12 months you’ll have collected 90 cents in interest.

Finding the best bank for savings accounts should include a bank that pays high interest and not charge you fees. But that may be easier said than done.

Here is what 5 of America's biggest banks offer:

  • Chase savings account – 0.01 percent APY
  • Bank of America savings account – 0.03 percent APY
  • Wells Fargo savings account – 0.01 percent APY
  • Citibank – 0.04 percent APY
  • US Bank – 0.01 percent APY

Compare that with CIT Bank's stellar savings product, the Savings Builder Account that pays 1.80 percent APY.

Whether you’re saving for a new car, a vacation or building up your emergency fund, a savings account is an excellent place to keep money safe and can help you meet financial goals – if you find the best bank for savings accounts.

CIT Bank – Best Bank for Savings Accounts – Earn 1.80% APY

CIT Bank is an FDIC-insured, online-only bank founded in 2009 and currently headquartered in Pasadena, CA. CIT stands for Commercial Investment Trust because it started as a bank that served only businesses but has since expanded to serve retail customers as well.

CIT is 42nd among the largest banks in the United States. June 2017 regulatory filings state the bank has equity of $5.36 billion on $41.18 billion in assets. According to Bankrate, CIT Bank exhibits a superior condition, earning a full 5 stars for safety and soundness.

CIT Bank stands out from the crowd, thanks to a high-interest savings account of 1.80% APY and no monthly fees.

  • Interest rate: 1.80 percent
  • Minimum balance: $100 to open
  • Monthly fee: None
  • Requirement to earn 1.80 percent: Make at least one single deposit of $100 or more every month.
  • FDIC-insured

The CIT Bank Savings Builder Account is available online to U.S. citizens and is one of the top banks for high rates in the nation. This account was designed to help you build up your savings by encouraging you to consistently deposit at least $100 into the account.

When you open this account with $100, you’ll automatically receive the high rate as an introductory offer. In order to continue earning the 1.80% APY you must deposit at least $100 every month. The requirement both encourages you to save more money and rewards you for doing so.

The CIT Bank Savings Builder Account helps build momentum. Once you see the account growing, you have positive reinforcement to continue your saving behavior. Watching your savings grow is enjoyable and you’re more likely to keep it up. Learn more about the Savings Builder Account.

CIT Bank – No-Penalty CD

If you’re worried about locking your money down with a long-term CD, check out CIT's 11-month No-Penalty CD. You can withdraw your funds at any time with no penalty including any interest earned. With an interest rate of 1.75%, it’s a great way to lock in a high rate account without the requirement of a monthly $100 deposit.

With the CIT Bank No-Penalty CD, lock in a guaranteed rate and get access to your funds when you need them.

  • Interest rate: 1.75 percent
  • Minimum balance: $1000 to open
  • Monthly fee: None
  • No penalty to access funds if needed before maturity
  • Daily compounding interest to maximize your earning potential
  • FDIC-insured

Whatever your financial goals, CIT Bank's No-Penalty CD offers a no-strings attached savings vehicle. Protect against job loss, medical issues or home repairs, and be prepared for the unexpected. No-Penalty CD accounts are also good to save for big purchases or a house downpayment.

Earn high interest, grow your money and keep it liquid with CIT's 11-Month No-Penalty CD. Learn more about the No-Penalty CD Account.

CIT Bank – Money Market Account

CIT Bank has a money market account that earns 1.85% APY. Typically, money market accounts are a hybrid between a savings and checking account where you can write checks. However, CIT Bank's money market account is a little different because you don’t have the ability to write paper checks.

CIT Bank uses People Pay to send money. Like Venmo and Zelle, you can use People Pay to send money for free to anyone with a U.S. bank account and either a cell phone number or an email address. You can transfer money directly from the money market account to another account. Funds can also be sent through PayPal. The most you can transfer per transaction with People Pay is $2,000, with a $4,000 daily limit.

CIT Money Market Account earns a 1.85% APY on all balances plus a few more features.

  • Minimum deposit of $100 to open
  • No monthly service fees
  • Daily compounding interest
  • Mobile banking with Bill Pay
  • Deposit checks remotely and make transfers with the CIT Bank mobile app
  • FDIC-insured

Currently, CIT's Money Market's rate is one of the highest money market rates you can find in all 50 states. Learn more about the 11-Month No Penalty CD.

All savings accounts are subject to Reg D

Whether it's CIT Bank or any other United States-based bank, savings accounts have a 6 withdrawal limit per month. Regulation D applies to all depository institutions, big banks or small credit unions. It also applies to all consumers.

The purpose of this regulation is to ensure the financial institution has the appropriate level of reserves and to keep savings accounts from being used in the same manner as checking accounts.

To get around Reg D and access cash from your savings account beyond the 6 withdrawal limitation, use one of the methods not limited by Reg D. That includes using ATMs, withdrawing money in person at a branch or having a check mailed to you.

Drawbacks of CIT Bank

With FDIC insurance and consistently great savings rates, CIT Bank savings products continue to grow in popularity. However, there are a few drawbacks to take into consideration:

No branches. As an online bank, there are no branches to visit, so there’s no way to do your banking in person. Consumers can fund and withdraw money from accounts by electronic transfer with another bank account, wire transfer or mail.

No checking accounts. If you need a bank account to use for daily spending CIT Bank may not work for you. CIT Bank does not currently offer checking accounts.

Customer support could be better. It's no secret customers enjoy CIT Bank's high-interest rates but there have been a few complaints about hold times when contacting customer service. However, slow customer service is no reason to miss out on the stellar high-interest rates afforded to customers.

Despite any small drawback, CIT Bank offers the highest savings rates among American banks. Savers have several options at CIT Bank to make their money grow faster. CIT Bank accounts are FDIC insured, meaning that customers don’t have to worry about losing their funds if the bank were to go out of business.

See how much interest you can earn with our savings calculator.

More ways to save money

Savings Accounts

APY Calculator: Find out how much interest your money can earn

APY Interest Calculator

Initial Investment (Optional):

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Annual Interest Rate (APR%):

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Interest Earned:

CIT Bank Savings Builder - 1.85% APY

High Yield Savings Account that only requires $100 to open an account plus $100 minimum single deposit per month to earn 1.85% APY or maintain a balance of $25k. Considering that the national savings rate earns 0.09% APY this is a good deal to grow your money faster.

UFB Direct Savings - 2.15% APY

UFB High Yield Savings Account will earn you 2.15% APY on balances of $10,000 and greater – more than 20X the national average. This account does not require a minimum deposit to open. Open now with $0

BBVA Money Market - 1.90% APY

Open a Money Market account online today with a $25 deposit. Earn 1.90% APY with an account balance of $10,000 or more. With the BBVA Money Market account, you will have access to an ATM card that allows you to withdraw cash when you need it.

Savings Accounts

What is a Savings Account: How does Interest Work?

When you're new to personal finances, you may be wondering:  Exactly what is a savings account? The simple answer to that question is that a savings account is a place to hold money.

You make deposits into a savings account, it earns interest and you withdraw the money when needed.

Whether you’re saving for a new car, a vacation or building up your emergency fund, having a savings account can help you meet financial goals.

What is a savings account?

A savings account is designed for you to save money. Savings accounts offer a safe and convenient place to stash your cash. Savers have the assurance of their money being safe, unlike saving money around your house. Cash can get stolen or damaged in a fire.

But when the federal government insures your savings, you avoid the risk of losing money if your bank or credit union fails. Banks are covered by FDIC insurance, and credit unions are covered by NCUSIF insurance up to $250,000.

Money you put into a savings account grows over time by accruing interest. The amount of interest that accrues, the service fees and the minimum opening deposit will all very depending on the bank.

How does savings interest work?

When you put money in a savings account, the bank is technically borrowing the money and paying you interest in return. The interest rate determines how much money a bank pays you to keep your funds on deposit.

Another way to put it is that interest is the money you charge the bank for letting them store your money. This value is expressed in a percentage known as interest rate. If you put $25,000 in a savings account that pays a high interest rate of 2.45 percent APY at the end of the year you’re savings account would have earn $612 in interest.

Interest is what you'll earn on your money. Your savings account interest could compound daily, monthly, quarterly or annually.

APY (Annual Percentage Yield) is what you'll get on your money. You can use the APY to determine how much you’ll actually earn in interest each year because the APY relies on two inputs: the interest rate and how often the interest compounds.

Compounding interest. Compounding interest allows you to earn interest on your principal plus interest on your earnings.

Choosing the best bank for savings accounts

Understanding how interest works on a savings account and comparing the APY offered at several banks are important steps in choosing where to open an account.

The best bank for savings accounts will likely be an online bank. You can often get better returns from an online savings account because don’t have to pay for branches and can pass the savings on to consumers.

Find a fee-free savings account when comparing different savings account options. Monthly maintenance fees, ATM fees or transfer fees could offset your interest earnings or even cost you more than you earn, especially if you're earning the average rate on savings accounts.

For the past several years the average interest rate on savings accounts in the U.S. has hovered well below 1 percent.

Other types of Savings Accounts

A savings account is a basic type of bank account that allows you to deposit money, keep it safe, and withdraw funds, all while earning interest.

Certificate of Deposit (CD)

Certificate of Deposit accounts (CDs) are similar to savings account, but they typically pay more interest. Unlike savings accounts, a CD account allows you to save money at a set interest rate, for a specific amount of time. CD accounts can range from 11 months to 5 years but with a CD you don’t have access to the money you’re saving throughout the life of the certificate. If you withdraw early there is a substantial penalty on your earnings, unless you open a No-Penalty CD.

Money Market Account

Money market accounts (MMAs) are also similar to a savings accounts but also come with a checking component. You’re required to maintain a certain amount of money in the account but can also write checks on the account. Another difference from a traditional savings account is that the interest accrued in a money market account will fluctuate based on the financial markets. They are a good option for emergency savings because you have access to your cash, but you still earn interest.

Savings Withdrawals are limited 

You're limited to just six (6) transfers out of a savings account each billing cycle due to Regulation D. If you go over the bank could convert your savings account into checking account or even close your account. Regulation D is the federal government’s way of ensuring that banks have the proper amount of reserves on hand and encouraging people to use savings accounts as they are intended: to save money.

There are ways to get around Reg D by using the ATM, going inside the bank to withdraw money or withdrawing money by telephone if the check is mailed to the depositor.

If you're looking to grow your money more quickly while still keeping your money safe, consider CIT Bank's Savings Builder Account that pays 2.45% APY and only requires $100 to open.

Find the best bank for savings accounts for 2019.

See how much interest you can earn with our savings apy calculator.

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