A:

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) is an independent agency of the U.S. government that protects you against loss of deposit if your bank is FDIC insured. Banks are not mandated to be FDIC insured, but being insured has become a point of competition among banking institutions. In other words, a bank that is not FDIC insured cannot compete effectively in an industry where consumers have come to expect their money to be protected. To see if your bank is FDIC insured, you can go to the FDIC Bank Find page.

The FDIC does not insure all accounts held at an insured bank. The types of bank accounts insured by the FDIC include negotiable order of withdrawal (NOW), money market, checking, IRA, savings, and certificate of deposit (CD) accounts. These accounts are insured for up to $250,000 per account. Financial instruments such as stocks, bonds and money market funds, U.S. Treasury securities (T-bills), safe deposit boxes, annuities, and insurance products are not insured by the FDIC.

To learn more, read our related article Are Your Bank Deposits Insured?

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