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5-Year CDs End 2012 On Down Note

Money pointing downward.Barring a miraculous increase in the next week, 60-month CD rates will end 2012 with something significantly less than a bang.

The lead rate for this term on our CD Rates Leaderboard is just 1.80% APY — a full fifth of a percentage point south of where it began the year.

Two banks are offering that 1.80% APY, giving the term a little stability.

CIT Bank (www.bankoncit.com), the online consumer bank of CIT Group Inc., which offers financing to small businesses and middle-market companies, requires a $1,000 deposit.

Nationwide Bank (www.nationwide.com), an online bank owned by Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company and its affiliates, requires a $500 minimum deposit.

Two banks offer 1.75% APY:

AmTrust Direct, the online division of Cleveland-based AmTrust Bank (www.amtrustdirect.com), a division of New York Community Bank, requires a $500 minimum deposit.

MyBankingDirect (www.mybankingdirect.com), the online bank of New York Community Bank, requires a $500 minimum deposit.

Two banks pay 1.70% APY:

Barclays (www.banking.barclaysus.com), the online American operation of the big British bank, has no minimum balance requirement.

E-Loan (www.eloan.com), the subsidiary of Banco Popular North America, requires a $10,000 minimum deposit.

And three banks offer 1.65% APY:

Discover Bank (www.discoverbank.com), an online bank owned by the credit card company, requires a $2,500 minimum deposit.

EverBank (www.everbank.com), a predominantly online bank based in Jacksonville, Fla., requires a $1,500 minimum deposit.

Hudson City Savings Bank (www.hcsbonline.com), which has 130 branches in New Jersey, New York and Connecticut, requires a $500 minimum deposit for anyone living in that tri-state area but a $5,000 minimum deposit for everyone else.

These banks qualify for our rankings by imposing no restrictions on who can buy their certificates of deposit, either online or through the mail.

The average annual yield large banks and thrifts are offering for the 60-month term remains a record low 0.91% for the second week.

You can compare these returns with the best CD rates from scores of banks in our extensive database.

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