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Compare the best 6-month CD rates

Explore the best rates available today for your short-term investment.

The 15 best 6-month CD rates

Sort the best 6-month CDs by interest rates and minimum deposits. Check the Compare box next to your favorites to see how they stack up against each other.

Name Product 6-month APY Minimum deposit to open
Quontic Bank CD
Lock in a high rate. Minimum of $500 required to open. Open your account in 3 minutes or less
CIT Bank Term CDs
Choose from a range of terms with no maintenance fees and $1,000 minimum to open.
Pen Air FCU CDs
Limelight Bank CD
First Internet Bank CDs

Compare up to 4 providers

Quick summary of the best 6-month CD rates

The best six-month CD rates offer a short-term investment, as they allow you to lock away your money in exchange for more interest than a standard savings account. We researched over 80 accounts to find the highest rates available today. Then, we narrowed down our list by choosing accounts with nationwide availability, easy online applications and low opening deposits.

  • Quontic Bank CD: 1.26%
  • CIT Bank Term CDs: 0.3%
  • Discover CDs: 0.75%
  • Pen Air FCU CDs: 0.3%
  • Limelight Bank CD: 1.25%
  • First Internet Bank CDs: 0.7%
  • Consumers Credit Union CDs: 0.4%
  • Ally High Yield CDs: 0.25%
  • Synchrony Bank CDs: 0.75%
  • Capital One 360 CD: 0.6%
  • Axos Bank CDs: 0.2%
  • Marcus by Goldman Sachs High-yield CDs:
  • Vio Bank High Yield Online CDs: 0.15%
  • Barclays Online CDs: 0.1%
  • TD Bank Rate Bump CDs: 0.05%

What’s changed in 2021?

We removed Citi from our list because its APY dropped. We replaced it with Consumers Credit Union, which earns 0.4%. We also removed Radius Bank after it was acquired by LendingClub.

How do I choose the best 6-month CD?

Main points to keep in mind when deciding on a 6-month CD include:

  • The interest rate. Make sure the interest rate you’re getting for a 6-month CD is higher than what you’d earn on a standard savings account.
  • How interest is paid. With short-term deposits, the interest earned on your balance isn’t deposited until your CD reaches maturity. If you’re looking for monthly interest payments, consider a CD term of a year or longer.
  • Minimum investment. Some banks require a different minimum deposit for short-term CDs than for long-term CDs. Make sure you can comfortably meet the minimum deposit amount.
  • Early withdrawal penalties. Penalty fees vary by bank. When shopping around, take note of how much you’ll be penalized if you need to withdraw funds from your 6-month CD before it matures.

Compare the best 3-month CD rates

Alternative 6-month CDs

Looking for a few more options? These 6-month CDs have low opening deposits, but they didn’t make our best list because they’re not quite as accessible. Depending on your needs, they may be just what you’re looking for.

6-month APYMinimum deposit to open
Communitywide Federal Credit Union CD1%$1,000
ableBanking CD0.05%$1,000
Nationwide by Axos Bank CD0.2%$500

What are the pros and cons of a 6-month CD?

Six-month CDs provide steady way to grow your cash, helping you to work out exactly how much you’ll earn when the term matures. But they’re not without their drawbacks.

The benefits

  • Quicker access to funds. A six-month CD is one of the shortest terms available, so you can take advantage of a locked in interest rate without having to wait years to use your money.
  • Cheaper early withdrawal penalties. With a six-month CD, you may lose out on 60 to 90 days’ interest if you need to pull your money early — compared to 180 to 365 days’ interest for longer terms.

The drawbacks

  • APY may be lower than other terms. Typically the longer you lock your money away, the more interest you’ll earn. Since 6-month CDs are some of the shortest terms available, you likely won’t earn as much interest.
  • Not as widely available as longer terms. Some banks don’t offer CDs with terms less than 12 months, so your options may be more limited.

How does a 6-month CD work?

When you open a six-month CD, you agree to tuck away your savings for half a year. CDs can offer stronger interest rates than standard savings accounts as a reward for leaving it alone. You’ll pay hefty penalties for accessing your CD early, even for emergencies.

Interest payments for 6-month CDs

Most six-month certificates of deposit pay your interest when the term matures that is, after the six months end. With select CDs, you could see interest paid monthly, but that’s more common with terms of a year or longer.

When you set up your CD, you select a bank account you’d like your interest payments deposited into. Some CDs allow interest paid into any US bank account, while others require an account within the same financial institution.

Some CDs compound interest, which means the interest is paid directly into the CD account, effectively helping you to earn interest on interest.

Bottom line

A 6-month CD can be a useful short-term investment. Finding one with the best interest rate ensures your money is working hard for you. If you’re thinking a six-month CD isn’t for you, compare other terms until you find one that meets your needs.

Picture: Shutterstock

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