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An In-Depth Review of Discover’s Banking Products

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

Discover Bank Online Savings Account

A completely fee-free online savings account, with no minimum balance requirements and a competitive annual percentage yield (APY).

APY

Minimum Deposit to Open

1.50%

$0

There is no minimum balance required to open a Discover Bank Online Savings Account, nor any monthly maintenance fees. While account holders do not have the ability to withdraw money from their savings account via an ATM, they are able to access and manage their account online and via a mobile app. That lets users deposit and transfer money to and from Discover Bank and third-party bank accounts.

This account doesn’t come with any fees. Even if you exceed Federal Reserve’s Regulation D, which mandates certain types of telephone and electronic withdrawals, including transfers from savings accounts up to 6 per statement cycle, Discover Bank will not charge an excessive withdrawal fee.

If you exceed six specific transactions more than once, however, your account may be closed. Discover Bank will only do this if you exceed the limit “more than on an occasional basis.” Be sure to read the Deposit Account Agreement for specifics about this limit.

You can earn a respectable APY with this account, compounded daily and deposited into your savings account every month. As soon as you deposit any money in your account, you’ll begin earning interest.

This is a solid savings account product. It stands out for its competitive APY, zero fees, and having no minimum balance requirement to earn the APY or minimum opening deposit. There are no eligibility requirements to open the account, which can be done online or by phone.

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How Discover Bank’s Online Savings Account compares

Compared with the best online savings accounts in our listing, Discover Bank’s Online Savings Account offers a pretty decent rate, but not the best. With a little research, you can find better interest rates out there at other institutions that also don’t charge fees or have minimum balance requirements.

Discover Bank CDs

A minimum deposit of $2,500 gives you competitive CD rates among online banks, but higher rates can be found.

Term

APY

Minimum Deposit to Open

3 months

0.35%

$2,500

6 months

0.65%

$2,500

9 months

0.70%

$2,500

12 months

1.75%

$2,500

18 months

1.75%

$2,500

24 months

1.75%

$2,500

30 months

1.75%

$2,500

3 years

1.80%

$2,500

4 years

1.80%

$2,500

5 years

1.80%

$2,500

7 years

1.80%

$2,500

10 years

1.80%

$2,500

Discover Bank offers CDs with terms ranging from 3 months to 10 years. Interest is compounded daily and is deposited each month. All of its current CDs require an initial opening deposit of $2,500.

Interest is compounded daily and deposited into the account every month. As with most CD rates, the longer the term of the CD, the higher the rate you will receive. To lock in the highest possible rate for your CD, make sure you fund your account within ten days of applying.

There are early withdrawal penalties for taking your money out before the end of the term. The penalty amount varies, depending on how far you are into your CD’s term.

Term

Less than 1 year

1 year to 4 years

4 years to 5 yrs

5 years to 7 years

7 years or greater

Penalty

3 months’ simple interest

6 months’ simple interest

9 months’ simple interest

18 months’ simple interest

24 months’ simple interest

You do have the option to withdraw any interest earned on your CD and transfer it to another Discover Bank account without penalty. This interest amount can also be left in your CD to compound throughout its life.

Account holders receive notice of CD maturity 30 days before the end of the term. Once a term has ended, account holders have a nine-day grace period to make a change to their CD before incurring penalties. If no action is taken, the CD will automatically renew at the same rate and term.

You can open a Discover Bank CD online or by phone. The only eligibility requirement is the $2,500 minimum deposit, which can be paid via phone, check or an online transfer from your bank. Discover Bank provides the option of opening your CD in the form of a trust, guardian, estate or custodial account. In order to do so, you must call customer service.

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How Discover Bank’s CD rates compare

Overall, Discover Bank CD rates are competitive. They certainly beat out most of the major banks seen in our roundup of the best CDs when it comes to APY. However, if you do some digging, there are better rates out there for CDs, both in terms of minimum deposit and interest rate earned. Discover Bank’s minimum deposit of $2,500 is the biggest downside to this product. Investors without large amounts of capital will find this restrictive.

Discover Bank CashBack Debit checking account

An online checking account with no monthly fees and pays decent cashback rewards.

Discover Bank’s CashBack Debit account is appealing because it doesn’t carry any fees — that means no monthly maintenance fee, no minimum balance requirements and no fees for check ordering or debit card replacement.

It offers free online and mobile banking features, such as bill pay, wire transfers and account management.

One of the account’s main selling points is the cashback reward, which pays 1.00% on debit card transactions, up to $3,000 of purchases each month. This 1% return is not an APY — it’s a straight-up cashback reward. There are no qualifications to earn the cashback rewards — when you spend with your debit card, you’re earning rewards. They can be redeemed as a credit to your checking account or transferred to a Discover Bank CashBack Bonus card account. Terms apply.

Discover Bank has partnered with AllPoint® and MoneyPass® to offer more than 60,000 in-network ATM locations. While Discover Bank does not charge ATM fees for going out of network, it does not reimburse fees charged by third-party ATMs.

How to get Discover Bank’s CashBack Debit checking account

You can open a Discover Bank CashBack Debit checking account online or by phone. There are no minimum deposit requirements, and the bank doesn’t require account holders to keep a minimum balance. Once you open your account, you’ll receive your debit card within 10 business days. Discover Bank offers free checks for account holders, although you must request them.

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How Discover Bank’s checking account compares

Discover Bank’s CashBack Debit checking account stacks up against other banks when it comes to offering a no-fee checking account. While it does boast a large ATM network, in part due to partnerships, it does not reimburse out-of-network ATM fees.

There are better rewards programs according to DepositAccounts list, as well as accounts that don’t require you to spend money to make money. If you spend a significant amount of money via your debit card every month, this rewards program might make sense. If not, there are other banks that offer better APYs on checking accounts for less effort on your end.

Discover Bank Money Market Account

Good withdrawal options, but with a high minimum balance requirement and interest rates that don’t stack up.

APY

Minimum Balance to Earn APY

Minimum Deposit to Open

1.35%

Less than $100,000

$2,500

1.40%

Greater than $100,000

$2,500

Opening a Discover Bank Money Market Account requires a minimum initial deposit of $2,500. There are a few account features worth noting, starting with the withdrawal options. Unlike in the bank’s online savings account, account holders of the money market account will receive checks and a free debit card. Your debit card can be used to withdraw money via ATMs and at stores.

Discover Bank does not charge ATM fees, but if you use an out-of-network ATM and incur a fee, the bank will not reimburse it. It’s important to note that your money market account is subject to the same Federal Reserve regulation, which mandates certain types of telephone and electronic withdrawals, including transfers from savings accounts up to 6 per statement cycle. If you exceed the six withdrawals, you’ll be charged a $15 fee per item from Discover Bank, and Discover Bank may simply close your account. However, this doesn’t apply to withdrawals from ATMs or via official check that is mailed to you. This account also gives you the ability to sign up for online bill pay and overdraft protection.

How to get a Discover Bank Money Market account

The only eligibility requirements to open a Discover Bank Money Market Account is an initial minimum deposit of $2,500. You can open an account either online or by calling one of its banking specialists. To fund your account, you have the option of an online transfer, direct deposit or check, which can be mailed or deposited via Discover Bank’s Mobile Check Deposit app.

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How Discover Bank’s Money Market Account compares

Discover Bank Money Market accounts do not stack up to the other competing offerings listed on our round-up of the best money market accounts. Discover Bank’s competitive account features, like a large ATM network, free checks and a debit card, are nice but its rates do not compete.

Discover Bank IRA CD rates

Competitive rates with a higher-than-average minimum deposit for both traditional IRAs and Roth IRAs.

Term

APY

Minimum Deposit to Open & Earn APY

3 months

0.35%

$2,500

6 months

0.65%

$2,500

9 months

0.70%

$2,500

12 months

1.75%

$2,500

18 months

1.75%

$2,500

24 months

1.75%

$2,500

30 months

1.75%

$2,500

3 years

1.80%

$2,500

4 years

1.80%

$2,500

5 years

1.80%

$2,500

7 years

1.80%

$2,500

10 years

1.80%

$2,500

As in other Discover Bank CD products, the minimum deposit to open an IRA CD is $2,500. This is also the minimum balance required to earn APYs. Discover Bank offers both traditional IRA and Roth IRA CD options, with interest rates that vary depending on the CD term you choose. Terms can go from 3 months to up to 10 years. Early withdrawal penalties remain the same for both IRA and non-IRA CDs.

An IRA CD is a worthwhile investment if you don’t touch your savings and want to earn a higher APY than what’s being offered for your savings account. IRA CDs make the most sense if you’re looking for a long-term investment. While they don’t pay exceptionally high returns, they can be a good investment vehicle in your portfolio if you have extra capital.

How to get an IRA CD with Discover Bank

Opening a Discover Bank IRA CD account can be done by phone or online, and requires an initial minimum deposit of $2,500. Funding your account can be done by phone, via check or via a bank-to-bank transfer from an existing IRA. The bank also allows account holders to initiate a direct or indirect rollover from an existing IRA.

To learn more about Discover Bank IRA CDs or to open your account, visit this link.

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Member FDIC

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How Discover Bank’s IRA CDs compare

Compared with other options in our listing of the best IRA CDs, Discover Bank’s rates fall somewhere in the middle. The minimum deposit required is higher than on other offerings out there and the rates are competitive, but not high enough to be the best on the market.

Overall review of Discover Bank’s deposit products

Discover Bank has created a suite of banking products that can actively compete in today’s market. Its online and mobile banking has all the necessary features to access and manage your account, and it boasts a large ATM network that limits ATM fees.

Compared with the traditional big banks, Discover Bank has them beat when it comes to rates and offerings. However, if you take the entire market into consideration, these banking products fall somewhere in the middle.

Since all of the reviewed products above do not charge monthly maintenance fees and do pay some form of interest or cash back, you wouldn’t be wrong in opening an account. However, if you’re looking for the best of the best, perhaps you should consider other options.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

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Review of Limelight Bank’s CD Rates

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

Limelight Bank’s CD rates

Limelight Bank’s CD rates are competitive, come with no monthly fees, and have a slightly higher than average minimum deposit requirement.

Term

APY

6 months

1.45%

12 months

1.65%

18 months

1.65%

  • Minimum opening deposit: $1,000
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $1,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: 90 days interest on the amount withdrawn

Limelight Bank’s CDs would be a good option for anyone looking to put their savings to work via a short-term CD. While its minimum deposit and minimum balance requirements are a bit higher than other offers, its rates stand out as competitive and the accounts come with no monthly fees. You can also deposit up to $500,000 on your CD. Interest on your CD will compound daily and be deposited to your account every month.

How to get Limelight Bank’s CDs

Opening a CD with Limelight Bank is relatively simple and can be done online or by phone. You’ll need to be 18 years or older and provide your social security number, government-issued ID, and information on how you’ll be funding your CD account, including your bank routing and account numbers. Funds can take 2-3 business days to post to your account once you initiate your money transfer.

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on Limelight Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Limelight Bank’s CD rates compare

Limelight Bank’s 6 month CD is by far its most competitive offering. It stands out as one of the best rates for a 6 month CD across the board. The bank’s 12 month and 18 month CD options are also competitive; however, you may be able to find comparable rates with a smaller minimum deposit at an online bank or smaller financial institution.

To see how Limelight Bank’s rates compare and to find the best CD for your needs, please visit our recently updated Best CD Rates blog.

Overall review of Limelight Bank’s CDs

Limelight Bank stands out as a unique financial institution with good rates and a strong commitment to the environment. Overall, it offers some highly competitive rates. Its shorter-term CDs (6 month and 12 month) will give you the best bang for your buck. The biggest drawback of Limelight Bank’s CDs is its $1,000 minimum deposit; however, compared to what larger financial institutions are offering, this is still a great option.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

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Sallie Mae Bank Reviews: Money Market, Savings and CD Rates

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

Sallie Mae Money Market Account

A competitive interest rate with no fees or minimum balance requirement.

APY

Minimum Deposit to Earn APY

1.50%

None

  • Minimum opening deposit: None
  • Monthly maintenance fees: None
  • ATM fee: No ATM access
  • Overdraft fee: $19 insufficient funds fee

There is no minimum balance or deposit required to open this account, which is a real advantage given its competitive rate or annual percentage yield (APY). Since Sallie Mae Bank operates entirely online and account holders don’t get an ATM card, this account would be best suited for people who don’t plan on touching their money very often. Sallie Mae offers online and mobile banking with electronic deposits for daily account management.

Federal Reserve’s Regulation D mandates certain types of telephone and electronic withdrawals, including transfers from savings accounts up to 6 per statement cycle. Exceeding this limit results in a $10 fee per transaction from the bank. Transfers into and between Sallie Mae accounts are free, but a $20 fee is charged on transfer to another bank. Sallie Mae does not initiate international wire transfers.

How to get the Sallie Mae Bank Money Market Account

You can apply for a Sallie Mae Money Market Account online. You’ll be prompted to enter and verify your information. In some cases, you may need to verify your identity by submitting your driver’s license. Note that if an account sits dormant with a balance of less than $100 for 12 months, Sallie Mae may close it.

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How Sallie Mae’s Money Market Account compares

Sallie Mae’s Money Market Account is competitive compared to other offerings on our round-up of the best money market accounts. The rate isn’t the highest, but few money market accounts offer as high a rate without requiring a minimum deposit or minimum balance. Those facets alone make this account extremely approachable.

Sallie Mae Bank’s savings account options

High-Yield Savings Account

A competitive interest rate, with no fees or minimum balance requirements on this savings account.

APY

Minimum Deposit to Earn APY

1.40%

None

  • Minimum opening deposit: None
  • Monthly maintenance fees: None
  • ATM fee: No ATM access
  • Overdraft fee: $19 insufficient funds fee

Sallie Mae’s High-Yield Savings Account stands out by offering a competitive rate without any monthly fees or balance requirements. While there are better savings rates available, this account would work well for anyone looking for a hands-off way to earn a decent yield.

Sallie Mae’s High-Yield Savings Account does not come with a debit or ATM card, making the account less accessible to those who want to use their money frequently. Federal Regulation D (this regulation applies to all savings accounts) mandates certain types of telephone and electronic withdrawals, including transfers from savings accounts up to 6 per statement cycle. One important thing to note is that this account can only be funded via Automated Clearing House (ACH) transfer or check. Sallie Mae does not accept cash or money order deposits.

How to get the Sallie Mae Bank High-Yield Savings Account

To open an account, you’ll need to visit Sallie Mae’s website, fill out an application form and provide some personal information like name and date of birth. In some cases, you may have to verify your identity further by submitting documents like your driver’s license. Once approved, you can fund your account via ACH transfer, check or an existing Sallie Mae account. New accounts are subject to a five-day hold on amounts less than or equal to $5,000, with an additional five days for any amount over that.

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SmartyPig Account

Free savings account helps you set and achieve savings goals, pays a decent interest rate and has no minimum balance requirement.

APY

Minimum Deposit to Earn APY

1.55%

None

  • Minimum opening deposit: None
  • Monthly maintenance fees: None
  • ATM fee: No ATM access
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

Sallie Mae Bank’s SmartyPig account is meant to help you save for specific goals and would be a good fit for those who want to organize their savings goals, all while earning an impressive rate and not paying fees. The account is advertised as having multiple APY tiers based on the savings account balance; however, as of writing, all tiers offered the same rate.

With a SmartyPig account, you have a primary account, which holds all deposits. From there, you have the ability to set up multiple savings goals under the primary account. Each goal goes into a sub-account, letting you track the progress you’ve made towards your goal. Account holders have the ability to set up automatic deposits into the account. It does not come with a debit or ATM card and is subject to the Regulation D which mandates certain types of telephone and electronic withdrawals, including transfers from savings accounts up to 6 per statement cycle.

How to get the Sallie Mae Bank SmartyPig Account

To open a SmartyPig account, you must be 18 years old. Once you complete the application process (which requires some basic personal information), you can fund your account. Funds will be on hold for five days from the date of deposit.

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How Sallie Mae’s savings accounts compare

Sallie Mae offers a variety of interest-bearing savings accounts. While none of them currently offer the best rate in the market compared to those on our list of the best online savings accounts, they all offer competitive rates and have noteworthy features that emphasize the importance of creating smart savings habits.

None of Sallie Mae’s savings accounts have extra fees or requirements for minimum balances or minimum deposits, helping to put them on par with some of the best offerings currently on the market. However, one important factor to take into consideration is that none of Sallie Mae Bank’s savings accounts offer ATM access.

Sallie Mae Bank’s CD Rates

Earn competitive rates on a certificate of deposit with a higher-than-average minimum deposit.

Term

APY

Minimum Balance to Earn APY

6 months

1.30%

$2,500

9 months

1.30%

$2,500

11 months

1.30%

$2,500

12 months

1.35%

$2,500

13 months

1.35%

$2,500

15 months

1.35%

$2,500

18 months

1.35%

$2,500

24 months

1.40%

$2,500

30 months

1.40%

$2,500

36 months

1.35%

$2,500

60 months

1.35%

$2,500

  • Minimum opening deposit: $2,500
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $2,500
  • Early withdrawal penalties, which depend on the original term of the CD, are:
    • Less than 12 months: 90 days of interest
    • More than 12 months: 180 days of interest

The rates on Sallie Mae Bank’s CDs are competitive, but they fall short when it comes to minimum deposits. There are other accounts with APYs on par with or higher than Sallie Mae’s that do not require a minimum deposit or balance to maintain an account.

This account automatically renews when your CD matures. Upon maturity, account holders have a 10-day grace period to withdraw funds from the account before it renews. Withdrawing interest earned on your CD can be done at any point throughout a CD’s term without penalty.

How to get Sallie Mae Bank’s CDs

To open a CD with Sallie Mae Bank, you’ll need to apply for an account online. You’ll have to enter some personal information, and in some cases, take extra steps to verify your identity. Currently, the only way to put money in an account is through ACH transfer or by check.

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How Sallie Mae’s CD rates compare

While you can find slightly higher APYs on our listings, Sallie Mae still offers solid CD rates. The biggest downside is the $2,500 minimum balance and deposit requirement.

 

Overall review of Sallie Mae’s banking products

Sallie Mae’s account offerings are competitive. However, its online and mobile banking has all the features you’d need to save and manage your money on a day-to-day basis. None of the above accounts come with a debit or ATM card. While limited account accessibility may be a big downside to some, this could be looked at as a positive if you’re prone to dipping into your savings frequently.What makes Sallie Mae products stand out is their emphasis on the importance of creating smart savings habits. The fact that all of their accounts don’t charge any monthly fees and earn some form of interest means you won’t do yourself a disservice by opening an account.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.