Editorial Note: Forbes may earn a commission on sales made from partner links on this page, but that doesn't affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.

Opening a money market account can be a great way to increase your savings, as many offer higher interest rates than you may find with a savings account. Money market accounts also may offer a hybrid of the best features of both savings and checking accounts. They are low-risk investments that are perfect for keeping an emergency fund or other extra cash you’d like to have earning consistent returns.

Even in a low interest rate environment, it’s important to have liquid savings. Here’s a closer look at 10 top money market accounts you may want to consider as a home for your savings.

SHOW MORE

Best Money Market Accounts

Shown below are the criteria by which Forbes Advisor ranked these 10 Best Money Market Accounts. Click on the individual View Details button for each featured account to learn more about why we picked it, the pros and cons, and to access individual bank reviews.

APYs and account details are accurate as of September 20, 2020, and will be updated monthly.


Northern Bank Direct

Northern Bank Direct

Northern Bank Direct

Northern Bank Direct

Annual Percentage Yield

0.75%

Minimum Deposit Requirement

$5,000

Monthly Maintenance Fee

$0

Minimum Balance Required to Avoid Fee

N/A

View Details
Why We Picked It

Another high-earning money market account is at Northern Bank Direct, the online division of New England-based Northern Bank. A $5,000 initial deposit is required to open a money market account, but it has no minimum balance requirement or monthly maintenance fees.

Balances under $250,000 earn the highest APY. Similar to most money market accounts, transfers and withdrawals are limited to six a month, with a $20 charge per transaction over the limit. A Northern Bank Direct money market account comes with a debit card and no fees at participating ATMs.

Read our full Northern Bank Direct review.

Details
Northern Bank Direct charges $20 per transaction over the allowable limit of six per statement cycle. Balances between $5,000 and $249,999.99 earn the listed APY, while balances over that amount earn at a lower rate.

Pros
  • One of the highest APYs available
  • No monthly fees
  • Comes with a complimentary debit card
Cons
  • Steep initial deposit requirement
  • High excessive transaction fee

TIAA Bank

TIAA Bank

TIAA Bank

TIAA Bank

Annual Percentage Yield

0.75% (1st Year)

Minimum Deposit Requirement

$500

Monthly Maintenance Fee

$0

Minimum Balance Required to Avoid Fee

N/A

View Details
Why We Picked It

TIAA Bank offers a higher fixed APY rate for the first year on its money market account. The first-year rate is locked in for the whole year and is eligible for any balance up to $250,000. After that, money market accounts have tiered rates based on account balances.

Money market accounts are viewable through TIAA’s mobile app, with mobile check deposit available. Another benefit is that TIAA’s money market accounts are IRA eligible.

Read our full TIAA Bank review.

Details
After the first year, the APY varies, depending on account balance, from 0.50% to 0.60%. TIAA Bank offers its Yield Pledge promise: to assess competitors’ rates, on a weekly basis, and to make adjustments to ensure TIAA’s money market account is among the top 5% of Competitive Accounts.

Pros
  • No monthly fees
  • Mobile access
Cons
  • Rate is lower after the first year
  • Minimum opening deposit

Sallie Mae Bank

Sallie Mae Bank

Sallie Mae Bank

Sallie Mae Bank

Annual Percentage Yield

0.70%

Minimum Deposit Requirement

N/A

Monthly Maintenance Fee

$0

Minimum Balance Required to Avoid Fee

N/A

View Details
Why We Picked It

You may be familiar with Sallie Mae Bank because of its student loans, but it also offers banking solutions, including money market accounts. Its money market accounts feature high APY earning potential, along with check-writing privileges, no minimum balance and no monthly maintenance fees. The MMAs do not come with a debit card, though.

Sallie Mae money market account transfers are unlimited, but customers are limited to six withdrawals per month. Customers can add funds to their money market account by mobile deposit, direct deposit, ACH transfers and mailed checks. Withdrawals occur through transfers to linked accounts.

Read our full Sallie Mae Bank review.

Details
Interest on Sallie Mae money market accounts is compounded daily and paid monthly.

Pros
  • No monthly fee
  • No minimum opening deposit
  • All balances earn APY
  • Check-writing privileges
Cons
  • No debit card
  • Low-rated mobile apps

First Internet Bank of Indiana

First Internet Bank of Indiana

First Internet Bank of Indiana

First Internet Bank of Indiana

Annual Percentage Yield

0.70%

Minimum Deposit Requirement

$100

Monthly Maintenance Fee

$5

Minimum Balance Required to Avoid Fee

$4,000

View Details
Why We Picked It

Along with high APY earning, money market accounts from First Internet Bank of Indiana come with several complimentary benefits like:

  • Debit card
  • Incoming wire transfers
  • Incoming ACH transfers
  • Unlimited deposits

First Internet Bank of Indiana offers some of the best money market rates around. There is a $5 monthly maintenance fee, but you can avoid this by keeping a balance of at least $4,000. Customers can open an account for just $100, much lower than required by many banks.

Read our full First Internet Bank of Indiana review.

Details
Money Market Accounts through First Internet Bank of Indiana do not come with check-writing privileges.

Pros
  • Low initial deposit requirement
  • All balances earn APY
  • Up to $10 in rebates on out-of-network ATM fees
Cons
  • Monthly fee for balances under $4,000
  • No check-writing privileges

CIT Bank

CIT Bank

CIT Bank

Learn More

On CIT Bank's Secure Website

CIT Bank

Annual Percentage Yield

0.60%

Minimum Deposit Requirement

$100

Monthly Maintenance Fee

$0

Minimum Balance Required to Avoid Fee

N/A

View Details
Why We Picked It

CIT Bank is an online bank with popular savings account options as well as money market accounts. Its money market account offers high APY with a rather low initial deposit requirement of $100. Any balance big or small earns interest with CIT Bank. There are also no monthly maintenance fees charged on money market accounts. Transactions are limited to six transfers or withdrawals per statement period, with a $10 charge for each transaction over the limit.

Read our full CIT Bank review.

Details
Interest on CIT Bank’s money market accounts is compounded daily and paid monthly.

Pros
  • Low minimum deposit
  • No monthly fees
  • Mobile check deposit
Cons
  • Steep overdraft fees
  • No debit card or check-writing privileges

VirtualBank

VirtualBank

VirtualBank

VirtualBank

Annual Percentage Yield

0.60%

Minimum Deposit Requirement

$100

Monthly Maintenance Fee

$5

Minimum Balance Required to Avoid Fee

$100

View Details
Why We Picked It

Besides requiring a low initial deposit of $100 to open an account, VirtualBank‘s eMoney Market account earns high-yield interest on all balances. There is a $5 monthly maintenance fee, but to waive, it only requires a $100 average daily balance. A money market account with the online bank also comes with online and mobile banking access, including mobile check deposits.

Read our full VirtualBank review.

Details
While the VirtualBank eMoney Market Special account pays a higher APY of 0.80%, it can only be opened with new money, not funds from existing VirtualBank accounts. Since VIrtualBank is a division of First Horizon Bank, First Horizon funds are not eligible for this promotion.

Pros
  • No monthly fees
  • Low initial deposit requirement
Cons
  • No debit cards or check-writing privileges

ableBanking

ableBanking

ableBanking

ableBanking

Annual Percentage Yield

0.60%

Minimum Deposit Requirement

$250

Monthly Maintenance Fee

$0

Minimum Balance Required to Avoid Fee

N/A

View Details
Why We Picked It

Another online bank with excellent money market rates is ableBanking, a division of Northeast Bank. Opening an account requires a $250 opening deposit. Customers can deposit money in their money market accounts by:

  • Transfering from another Able Bank account or an external bank account
  • Direct deposit
  • Wire transfer
  • Mailing a check

ableBanking money market accounts are limited to six withdrawals per month. Excess withdrawals face a $10 fee per transaction. There are no monthly maintenance fees, though.

Read our full ableBanking review.

Details
ableBanking Money Market Accounts do not come with debit cards or check-writing privileges.

Pros
  • Low initial deposit requirement
  • No monthly fees
  • Mobile access
Cons
  • No debit card or check-writing privileges

TotalDirectBank

Total<em>Direct</em>Bank

TotalDirectBank

TotalDirectBank

Annual Percentage Yield

0.60%

with $2,500 minimum balance

Minimum Deposit Requirement

$2,500

Monthly Maintenance Fee

$0

Minimum Balance Required to Avoid Fee

N/A

View Details
Why We Picked It

Money market accounts from TotalDirectBank earn one of the best rates among the options. Opening an account does require an initial deposit of $2,500 and a minimum balance of $2,500 to earn interest. Deposits to a money market account are unlimited, but withdrawals and transfers are limited to six per month. TotalDirectBank is a division of City National Bank of Florida.

Read our full TotalDirectBank review.

Details
TotalDirectBank accounts aren’t available to those living in Florida or Puerto Rico. The maximum allowed in all TotalDirectBank accounts total is $500,000 per client.

Pros
  • No maintenance fees
  • All balances over $2,500 earn high-yield interest
Cons
  • Transfers by external account only
  • Steep initial deposit requirement
  • Not available everywhere in the U.S.

BMO Harris Bank

BMO Harris Bank

BMO Harris Bank

BMO Harris Bank

Annual Percentage Yield

0.60%

with $5,000 minimum balance

Minimum Deposit Requirement

$5,000

Monthly Maintenance Fee

$0

Minimum Balance Required to Avoid Fee

N/A

View Details
Why We Picked It

BMO Harris Bank offers Platinum Money Market Accounts with high earning potential and no monthly maintenance fees. Customers will need an initial deposit of $5,000 to open an account. There’s no minimum balance requirement to avoid fees, but you’ll need to keep a balance of $5,000 or more to earn the APY.

BMO Harris does have local bank branches. Many withdrawal and transfer options, like in-person, ATM, by messenger, and requests by mail or phone, are unlimited. All other withdrawals and transactions are limited to six transactions per month.

Read our full BMO Harris Bank review. Different rates apply to money market accounts opened in seven states where BMO Harris operates branches: Arizona, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri and Wisconsin.

Details
For balances of $1,000,000 or more, the applicable APY is 0.40%, rather than 0.60%. BMO local bank branches are limited to just eight states: Illinois, Indiana, Arizona, Missouri, Minnesota, Kansas, Florida and Wisconsin. Customers are subject to a $50 charge for closing a money market account in the first 90 days.

Pros
  • One of highest APYs currently available
  • No monthly fees
  • No minimum balance requirement
Cons
  • Steep initial deposit requirement

Quontic Bank

Quontic

Annual Percentage Yield

0.45% to 0.55%

Minimum Deposit Requirement

$100

Monthly Maintenance Fee

$0

Minimum Balance Required to Avoid Fee

N/A

View Details
Why We Picked It

Quontic offers tiered interest earning, with all balances still earning at a competitive rate. You can open an account for just $100. There also are no monthly fees with Quontic money market accounts. Another perk is that its money market account comes with a complimentary debit card and access to 90,000+ fee-free ATMs across the country. Customers can access funds online or through its mobile app.

Read our full Quontic Bank review.

Details
Account balances below $5,000 earn 0.45% APY. Balances from $5,000 to $149,999.99 earn 0.50%. Top APY of 0.55% requires a minimum account balance of $150,000.

Pros
  • No monthly fees
  • Low initial deposit requirement
  • Large fee-free ATM network
Cons
  • Requires large balance to earn the highest APY

How to Choose a Money Market Account

A money market account (MMA) is a type of deposit account—offered by traditional banks, credit unions and online banks—that includes some features typically associated with checking accounts. The real draw for money market accounts, though, is that they often offer higher interest rates than traditional savings accounts. However, they also generally require a higher minimum deposit and may have higher balance requirements.

In considering the best money market account for your needs, weigh the pros and cons. In addition to the APY offered, confirm whether the account you’re considering includes check-writing privileges and a debit card, and whether the bank limits the number of transactions each month.


Methodology

Forbes Advisor analyzed top money market account offers (from banks specifically, not credit unions) to identify leaders across a range of categories. The characteristics taken into consideration while evaluating these money market accounts included the current APY paid, minimum deposit and balance requirements, fees and other account parameters.

Even with the ongoing volatility in savings deposit APYs, these 10 money market accounts consistently have been among the highest-paying accounts for some time, although their relative positions within this 10 Best listing have varied and likely will continue to do so.


Frequently Asked Questions

Are online banks the best choice for money market accounts?

Because they have lower overhead costs, many online banks offer higher rates than traditional banks. When researching money market accounts, pay attention not only to the annual percentage yield (APY), but also to the minimum deposit requirements, minimum balance requirements and any associated fees.

What’s the difference between a money market account and a savings account?

When comparing a money market account vs. savings account, you’ll find that a money market account is a type of savings vehicle that typically comes with higher APY rates and some checking account features like check-writing privileges and a debit card.

 

Money market accounts usually require a higher initial deposit and may also have minimum balance requirements to earn the APY.

What’s the difference between a money market account and a money market fund?

Money market accounts are interest-bearing savings accounts through financial institutions, while money market mutual funds are low-risk investment funds available through brokers. A money market account is FDIC insured, but a money market mutual fund is not. Learn more about their differences.

Are money market accounts insured?

Yes, so long as they are at a bank or financial institution that is insured either by the FDIC or the NCUA. All of the banks on our list are FDIC insured up to $250,000 per depositor, for each account ownership category, in the event of bank failure.

Are money market rates fixed?

No, money market accounts come with variable rates that can change at any time. If you’re seeking to lock in an interest rate on a savings vehicle, you may want to consider a certificate of deposit (CD), which offers a fixed rate for a specific period of time.


Next Up in Banking

Forbes adheres to strict editorial integrity standards. To the best of our knowledge, all content is accurate as of the date posted, though offers contained herein may no longer be available. The opinions expressed are the author’s alone and have not been provided, approved, or otherwise endorsed by our partners.