bank rates

New Leaders Boost Best 3-Year CD Rate

We’re starting to see some signs of life in 36-month CDs, similar to what we’ve spotted in 24-month CDs.

Gulf Coast Bank & Trust Company and Sallie Mae Bank raised their 36-month yields to 1.60% APY this morning – Gulf Coast from 1.50% and Sallie Mae from 1.45%.

They now share the top nationally available return for 3-year CDs among the banks on our CD Rates Leaderboard.

Previous leader EverBank continues to pay 1.54% APY.

After falling to 1.50% APY in mid-January, the top yield on 3-year CDs remained there until mid-June.

Since then we’ve seen a series of lead changes driven by EverBank, First Internet Bank of Indiana and Silvergate Bank.

But the moves were more jockeying than substance, as each increase raised the lead by just one or two hundredths of a percentage point.

Today’s increase to 1.60% APY feels more meaningful. Although Gulf Coast modifies its rate sheet with some frequency, Sallie Mae’s previous 3-year rate went unchanged for 14 months.

Based in New Orleans and operating 18 branches throughout Louisiana, Gulf Coast requires a $2,000 minimum deposit for its online CDs.

Sallie Mae Bank, the online banking division of the student lending giant, requires a $2,500 minimum deposit.

Sallie Mae also raised its 12-month yield to 1.25% APY today, bringing it into a shared lead with CIT Bank and Synchrony Bank.

Unfortunately, we’re still not back to the 1.70% APY savers could earn on 3-year certificates of deposit at the start of the year. But maybe that will be the next step.

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