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Updated High-Yield Savings and Checking Rates

This article was written by in Banking. 16 comments.

I took a moment today to update the list of high-yield savings and checking account interest rates. While the rates are in decline, with the best annual yields around 3%, it will still beat the 0.2% to 0.4% many brick-and-mortar banks are offering on their savings accounts.

An email from Justin, a reader, reminded me that it was time for an update. He notified me that Emigrant Direct’s rate decreased to 2.75% recently.

Updated February 6, 2012 and originally published April 12, 2008. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.

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About the author

Luke Landes is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about Luke Landes and follow him on Twitter. View all articles by .

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Ken Clark

Check out Bank of Little Rock… Their Ultimate Checking was paying 6%, now paying 5%.


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avatar Luke Landes

Bank of Little Rock offers a high rate for its checking on the first $25k deposited, but it requires 10 debit card transactions every month as well as one direct deposit/draft each month. Otherwise the rate is only 1.01% as of today.

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avatar Jim

The party is over on the Emigrant Direct Savings account and Mastercard program.

As the Fed has cut interest rates, so too has Emigrant Direct (2.75% as of 4/19.2008). What is worse, they just pulled the rug out of their cash back program on the Mastercard side.

It used to be that you could earn 1.4% cash back on all purchases as long as you maintained a $10,000 balance in your Emigrant Direct savings account. However, that will all end on 5/15/2008.

Emigrant Direct is now issuing a new card called the World Elite. The new cash back program is now capped at 1.5% back on the first $10,000 in purchases or in other words $150 maximum cash back.

We used to charge EVERYTHING to our Emigrant Direct Platinum card. We earned over $500 in cash back last year, so this comes as quite a disappointment.

In fact, with the lousy interest rate in the Emigrant Direct Savings account and now coupled with the horrible cash back program of their Mastercard program, it may be time to shut down my accounts and move elsewhere.

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avatar tS

Emigrant Direct World Elite Note from Letter:

You will earn a rebate of 1.50% on the first $10,000 of Net Purchases posted to your credit card account in the year starting from your original account anniversary month regardless of the balance in the american Dream Savings Account. The rebate amount on the Net Purchases posted to your credit card account above $10,000 will be applied according to the terms and conditions of the existing rewards program.

(And they can “convert” you back to regular if you don’t spend $35k a year)

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avatar Jim


I called Barclays (the Bank administering the card) using the card member services number on the back of the new card and they said there is no cash back after the first $10,000.

It would be nice if EmigrantDirect would clarify the real deal, but I’m pretty sure when you ask the credit card company and they tell you it’s capped at $150, it’s capped at $150. What would be the logic in just getting a new credit card/reward program out of the blue from Emigrant if it was not to cut their program?

Who needs the concierge service – champagne in a hot air balloon ride over the African desert picture they paint on their new marketing material. I’d just like the cash back (back).

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avatar Jim

I called Barclays again and talked to another account specialist and this time they said “Yes” it is 1.5% on the first 10,000 and 1.4% on anything over that…

Who knows…I’ve requested a copy of the Terms and Conditions for this new World Elite Card. I’d like something in writing…

Sorry for the confusion if this isn’t the case.

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