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Best 3-Year CD Rates

These are the banks and credit unions with the best 3-year CD rates and terms

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Three-year CDs are an easy way to earn some serious interest on a lump sum of cash that you won’t need to touch for a while. They’re in the middle of the range of CD terms (most banks offer terms from about three months to five years) and as such, they can be an important component of a CD ladder. 

We review more than 150 banks and credit unions to find the best rates available nationwide for 3-year CDs. We track annual percentage yields and re-evaluate the list every weekday. All accounts are available to the public and are insured by either the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. or the National Credit Union Administration. 

For this list, we considered products that lock in deposits for 30 to 41 months. Our rankings are based primarily on the best APY. In the case of a tie, we then look at the CD with the shortest term, then with the lowest minimum deposit required to earn the APY. From there, we compare the penalties for early withdrawal. These factors allow us to ultimately decide which banks earn their spots in our rankings.

Here are the top 3-year CD rates as of Sept. 30, 2022. Unless otherwise noted, all require you to leave your money on deposit for 36 months.

Best 3-Year CD Rates

Bank or Credit Union APY Minimum Deposit Early Withdrawal Penalty
American Heritage Credit Union (30 months) 4.05% $500 6 months of interest
Quorum Federal Credit Union (30 months) 4.00% $1,000 12 months of interest
Bread Savings 4.00% $1,500 6 months of interest
Rising Bank 3.85% $1,000 6 months of interest
Merrick Bank 3.75% $25,000 6 months of interest
American Heritage Credit Union 3.65% $500 12 months of interest
Connexus Credit Union 3.61% $5,000 6 months of interest
PenFed Credit Union 3.60% $1,000 12 months of interest if closed within first year; 30% of interest if closed after first year
Merchants Bank of Indiana 3.56% $1,000 6 months of interest
My eBanc 3.51% $5,000 9 months of interest

American Heritage Credit Union

While its headquarters are in Philadelphia, American Heritage has 5,300 shared branches, and anyone can join. Just become a member of the credit union’s own Kids-N-Hope Foundation (the credit union will make a donation for you), and you’ll be eligible. Plus, it’s nice knowing that the charity has raised more than $1.5 million for area children’s hospitals. You’ll also need to open a savings account with a $15 minimum deposit.

Members can open a variety of accounts including checking, savings, credit cards, loans, and more. There are many short-term certificates available, as well as terms that go as long as five years.

Quorum Federal Credit Union

Quorum Federal Credit Union began in Chicago in 1934 as Kraft Employees Credit Union. In 2005, it took the name Quorum Federal Credit Union and expanded membership to additional employee groups, and in 2014, it launched its online banking services.

It has one service center at its headquarters in Purchase, NY, and another in Deerfield, Illinois. Additionally, customers have access to more than 85,000 ATMs nationwide and an online banking app.

Membership is available to employees of KraftHeinz, Mastercard, Philip Morris, and dozens of others. Those not employed by one of the partner groups still can join by becoming a member of the American Consumer Council.

Bread Savings

Bread Savings is part of Bread Financial, an FDIC-insured institution formerly known as Alliance Data Systems. Bread Savings offers savings accounts and CDs, while Bread Financial also offers lending options under the name Bread Loans in addition to multiple credit cards.

Bread has no brick-and-mortar locations, but customers can manage their accounts online or via a mobile app for Android and Apple devices.

Rising Bank

Rising Bank is the online banking division of Midwest BankCentre, based in St. Louis. Its history dates back to 1906 when Midwest was known as Lemay Ferry Bank. In 2000, it changed its name to Midwest Bank Centre, and Rising Bank was launched in 2018. Rising Bank specializes in checking and savings accounts and CDs of varying terms. Checking and savings accounts require $1,000 to open and aim to offer interest rates competitive with other online banks.

Merrick Bank

Merrick Bank has been around since 1997 and specializes primarily as a major issuer of Visa credit cards. The bank also provides personal loans and loans for boats and other recreational vehicles.

As far as CDs go, terms range from six months to two years.

Connexus Credit Union

Connexus Credit Union serves members nationwide through online banking and as a member of the CO-OP shared network. CO-OP and MoneyPass ATMs also are surcharge-free for members. The credit union is based in Wisconsin and has branches there as well as in Minnesota, Ohio, and New Hampshire.

Membership is available to residents of several communities in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Ohio, and to anyone affiliated with one of multiple organizations, employers, or schools, including the Connexus Association, which anyone can join for $5.

PenFed Credit Union

Membership at PenFed Credit Union is available to anyone nationwide, including those in Guam and Puerto Rico. It also serves customers in Okinawa, Japan.

The credit union was formed in 1935 and has grown to more than 2 million members and more than $25 billion in assets. The credit union offers a full array of consumer banking options, including, checking, savings, credit cards, mortgages, auto loans, and more.

All banking can be done through its app or via online banking.

Merchants Bank of Indiana

Founded in 1923 as Greensfork Township State Bank, Merchants Bank has six locations in central and eastern Indiana. It acquired Symphony Bank in 2009 and took its current name a few months later. The bank is a subsidiary of Merchants Bancorp, headquartered in Carmel, Indiana, which also includes Merchants Capital Corp., Farmers-Merchants Bank of Illinois, and Merchants Capital Servicing LLC.

In addition to CDs, Merchants Bank offers an array of personal and business banking products. It offers home loans through its Merchants Mortgage division. Those who don’t live near one of its branches can open and manage accounts online or via an app available for Android and Apple devices.

My eBanc

My eBanc is an online-only division of BAC Florida Bank. Based in Coral Gables, Florida, BAC Florida Bank was established in the U.S. in 1973 as Popular Bank of Hialeah. It changed its name in 1979 to Popular Bank of Florida, then changed it again in 1998 to BAC Florida Bank. My eBanc was established as a digital division in 2013.

My eBanc refers to its CDs as time deposits and also offers checking, savings, and money market accounts, all of which can be opened and managed online and through its mobile app. Accounts are available to any U.S. citizen 18 years of age or older.

What Is a 3-Year CD?

A certificate of deposit (CD), offered by banks and credit unions, provides a fixed interest rate (typically higher than other account types) in return for the account holder agreeing to leave the deposit for a set amount of time. Because the rate is fixed, the account holder knows exactly how much the CD will earn when it matures. For a 3-year CD, the account holder agrees not to touch the deposit for 30-41 months, depending on the bank or credit union. At the end of the term, the full interest will be added to the deposit amount. The customer then has the option to withdraw the full amount or renew or change the CD.

Who Is a 3-Year CD Best For?

A 3-year CD is appropriate for someone who wants to earn more interest than a typical savings account would offer.

A common reason to consider a 3-year CD is to save for some sort of life milestone that is set to take place a few years in the future. Perhaps your daughter’s Sweet 16 or a big wedding anniversary trip to Europe is on the horizon. The idea is that it’s an investment for the not-so-near future. Opening a CD helps safeguard your money, and lets you collect some interest while you wait for it to mature.

Typically, the longer the term, the higher the rate you’ll receive. A 3-year CD also can be used as part of a CD ladder. With a CD ladder, you buy CDs of varying lengths to mitigate the risks of locking all your money into one long-term CD.

You have to be OK with locking up your money for three years. That’s because there usually are early withdrawal penalties, and if you have to give back earnings to pay those penalties, it will have been a wasted opportunity.

What’s the Difference Between Interest Rate and Annual Percentage Yield (APY)?

The interest rate is what the bank actually pays you for your money. The APY is what you actually receive, on an annualized basis, after fees and compounding interest are factored in. If you’ve wondered why the advertised interest rates on CDs often are lower than their APYs, it’s because of compounding interest—the bank is paying interest on the interest it has already paid you!

What Are the Alternatives to a 3-Year CD?

If you’re looking for a savings option, a 3-year CD is just one of them. When choosing the best approach for you, the key is to think about your current financial situation, your goals, and your saving/spending habits. Beyond a 3-year CD, there are some other options to consider.

If you know you want to go the CD route, you may decide to go with a shorter or longer term, depending on your needs. Shorter-term CDs allow you access to your money sooner but probably will have a lower APY. Longer terms likely will earn more but will separate you from your money for a bigger stretch of time.

If you’d rather not tie up your money, you might consider an online savings account. Some APYs are close to what you’d earn from a 3-year CD. The difference is that savings account rates fluctuate. If opening a CD will help ensure that you won’t end up spending your savings, then that route might make the most sense for you.

If you prefer instant account access, we have partnered with the following banks to bring you the high-yield savings and money market account offers displayed in the table.

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