The Best Interest Rates for March 2017

Finding the best interest rates is a lot easier today than it was even a few years ago. Here at Dough Roller we track rates on everything from checking and savings accounts to mortgages to CDs. It occurred to me, however, that there was no one single page on the site where you could find the top rate for each type of account. So we created this page, updated monthly, to track the highest (or lowest) rates available.

Deal of the Day: Earn 1.00% APY on an FDIC-insured savings account at Barclays.

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We focus on those financial institutions that have low fees, great rates, and are typically available anywhere in the U.S. You can find local banks and credit unions that offer comparable rates, but their availability is limited geographically.

With that said, here are the best interest rates we’ve found for March 2017:

Best Bank Account Rates

Best Interest Rates Pin 2Savings Accounts: The top savings account rate goes to Synchrony Bank with an APY at 1.05%. Two other banks of note are Capital One and Ally, which both pay 1.00% APY. These rates are also unchanged from last month.  Ally is where I currently keep our emergency fund.

Here’s a comparison table that is updated daily with current competitive rates:

Best CD Rates: The rates on certificates of deposit vary based on the term. The longer the term, the higher the rate. Keep in mind that penalties may apply if you close the CD before the end of the term. For a 12-month CD, the best rate we could find is at Synchrony Bank, which offers 1.25% APY with a minimum balance of $2,000. The rates, of course, go up for longer-term certificates of deposit.

Checking Accounts: Most checking accounts do not pay interest. For online banks, however, you’ll find plenty of options where you can earn some interest on your funds. There are two things to keep in mind. First, many banks offer higher interest rates only if you keep a lot of money in your checking account. Second, the rates are lower than a savings account or CD.

Some top paying checking accounts that we like include FNBO Direct, which currently pays 0.65% APY. For those with at least $15,000 in checking, you can earn 0.60% APY from Ally Bank. I list Ally second because most people don’t keep that much cash in checking, but it’s an option for those who do. These rates are unchanged from previous months. And for those looking for bonus offers, Chase is offering bonuses of up to $300 for new checking accounts.

Bonus: I also keep a running list of popular checking account promotions you can check out.

Best Mortgage Rates

Mortgages: Listing the “best” mortgage rate is really impossible. Rates change throughout the day, vary by state, and are highly dependent on a number of factors including your credit score, debt-to-income ratio, and down payment. That being said, the average rate for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage moved down this month up to 4.10% according to Freddie Mac (down from 4.19% last month). The average rate on a 15-year fixed mortgage nudged down to 3.32% (down from 3.40% a month ago).

You can find competitive mortgage and refinance rates at LendingTree.

Best Credit Card Interest Rates

Credit Cards: The longest 0% introductory period stands at 21 months on both purchases and balance transfers. You can find a current list of the best 0% credit card offers here.

If you find better rates on any of the above financial products, please let us know in the comments below.

Note that the above rates were as of March 2, 2017. Rates are subject to change, so please confirm the rates directly with the financial institution.

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Topics: Banking

34 Responses to “The Best Interest Rates for March 2017”

  1. Brian Collins

    Good info. Thank you.

    One other thing that I would find very helpful, if it exists, would be a list of credit cards that offer 0% interest and 0% balance transfer fee for any period of time…even just 6 to 9 months would be helpful.

  2. Thanks for collecting all this information! Interest rates are one of the important things to factor in when determining where to keep your money. I would put it out there that interest rates are not the only factor to consider, but having as much information as possible about these rates is great!

  3. Hi Rob, For people in Michigan, Lake Michigan Credit Union pays 3% on a checking account up to $15,000 You must set up a direct deposit and due 10 transitions a month with your debit card. So for me it is worth using your debit card for 10 small transitions to get the 3% and I use it more for a savings account.

  4. One thing I noticed when I (recently) took out a HELOC, was that a local credit union offered the lowest overall plan because there were no closing/origination fees. They even waived the appraisal fee. The rate was .25% higher than an online rate I found, but by doing the math (mine is a short term), using the local guys turned out to be the best deal.

  5. Hello everyone. I’m looking into transferring several credit card accounts into an overall better credit card and/or cards. 0% transfer rates and obviously low APR’s would be ideal. If anything comes to mind, please share. I’ll continue to research and Rob… I’m so happy that I stumbled on to Dough Roller!!!

  6. Times have changed on the percentages earned in savings accounts. Its not the best choice these days to grow money. But, its better than checking accounts! You definitely need to know what’s happening in order to make the best choice for your goals.

  7. I am not a saver in this form anymore because of the scarily low interest rates, I like my money active for me.
    Great news on the mortgage rates for anyone wanting to make their money work for them in that manner. I’d rather over pay on my mortgage than place extra money in savings at the moment.

  8. After researching customer service reviews for the top online banks for savings accounts, I am hesitant about opening an account with an unfamiliar bank (to me).

    I am thinking about opening up an account with American Express even though their rates are a bit lower. I have been an AMEX credit card holder since 1989 and have always received great customer service.

    Do you think there is much difference among the online banks regarding customer service?

  9. CommonSense

    This article, like many, is incomplete.

    The top savings account rate with no fees/minimums is MySavingsDirect (from Emigrant Direct Bank) with a whooping 1.04% APR (1.05% APY if you dare).

  10. Quick question which may be a silly one: I recently opened a Capital One 360 savings account. Will the interest rate on that account or really any of the savings accounts listed about change as rates increase? Or do you have to open a new savings account to have the new rates?

    Thanks so much!!

  11. ComonSense

    Don’t fall for any of this. Many banks list a high APY (which is NOT the Annual Percentage Rate (APR)) at the beginning of each month to make it into article like this. Soon after they drop dramatically.

    Besides, APY does not do you any good, the APR is what counts. There are several banks out there who give you 1% true APR, and that for over 1 year, a professional would never mess around with what we call fake advertising APY’s.

    • Rob Berger

      Actually, I’ve been tracking rates for years now, and the banks listed don’t play games with their interest rates. The rates you see have been in place for some time. And the APY is what counts. It factors in compounding.

  12. Bill Talmadge

    It would be extremely useful if you could provide banks that have minimum premature penalties on 5 year cd’s. Ally used to have a penalty of 2 months on a 5 year cd, before they raised it. I took advantage at that time. Consider that it paid 2.4 percent. If you kept it a year, the interest rate would be 10/12 of 2.4 percent. That is 2 percent. A very good deal for a one year cd..

  13. Rick Pekar

    Actually Lake Michigan credit union does not require you to be a MI resident. If you check around there are plenty of CU and Small banks that offer high interest rate checking accounts that often exceed the 1% savings rates you have quoted.

    • Rob Berger

      Rick, right you are. Just make sure you understand the limitations. They limit the amount you can save, require direct deposit, require a certain number of debit transactions each month. This doesn’t make them bad deals. It’s just important to know the requirements before opening an account.

  14. Do you know the name of a lender that will give me a decent rate on a small investment property to refinance? The rates I have been getting are very high and closing costs range from $3800 to $5800!! Any information is greatly appreciated.!

  15. Bill Talmadge

    Just out this last week, too late for your survey. A 11 month no-penalty CD from Ally for 1.25 percent. Since this is equivalent to a straight savings account, go for the no-penalty CD.

  16. Christopher Allen Dowling

    Capital one is offering $200 to open a new money market account 1% interest, may be targeted, and offers 1.25% interest savings.

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