Best Jumbo CD Rates for April 2020

Our guide to the highest jumbo CD rates available to anyone in the U.S.

For savers who want to sock away $50,000 or more in a virtually risk-free investment, jumbo certificates of deposit offer a return that is both safe and predictable, if modest. To help you earn as much as you can, we've done the research for you on the best nationally available jumbo CDs, culled from more than 50 banks and credit unions that offer jumbo certificates nationwide.

To be included in our jumbo ranking, a CD's minimum deposit requirement must be at least $50,000, though the majority of the top-paying jumbo certificates require $100,000.

APYs are changing rapidly amid widespread uncertainty about the economy and financial markets. Investopedia is monitoring rates and will update them accordingly.

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Best Current Jumbo CD Rates:

  • Best 6-month jumbo: Air Force Federal Credit Union1.50% APY
  • Best 1-year jumbo: Premier America Credit Union1.70% APY
  • Best 2-year jumbo: Hughes Federal Credit Union2.12% APY
  • Best 3-year jumbo: Hughes Federal Credit Union2.22% APY
  • Best 5-year jumbo: Premier America Credit Union2.30% APY

But CD shoppers beware, as certificates with "jumbo" in their name aren't always your most lucrative option. Take for example these competing regular CDs, which pay as much as or more than those marketed as jumbos:

  • Best 6-month non-jumbo: Marcus by Goldman Sachs (7 months, $500 minimum) – 1.70% APY
  • Best 1-year non-jumbo: Live Oak Bank ($2,500 minimum) – 1.90% APY
  • Best 2-year non-jumbo: Hughes Federal Credit Union ($1,000 minimum) – 1.92% APY
  • Best 3-year non-jumbo: Premier America Credit Union ($25,000 minimum) – 2.05% APY
  • Best 5-year non-jumbo: Premier America Credit Union ($1,000 minimum) – 2.30% APY

Details on the top-paying jumbo certificates are outlined below, complete with information on minimum deposits, early withdrawal penalties, and, where applicable, how you can join the credit union.

To comparison shop among regular CDs, next visit our full rankings of today's best non-jumbo rates across multiple CD terms.

Air Force Federal Credit Union - 1.50% APY

  • Term (months): 6
  • Minimum deposit: $100,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Half of the interest that would have been earned until maturity
  • Membership: Anyone can join Air Force Federal by donating $25 to the Airman Heritage Foundation and keeping at least $5 in a savings account.

Premier America Credit Union – 1.70% APY

  • Term (months): 12
  • Minimum deposit: $100,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Six months of interest
  • Membership: Anyone can join Premier America Credit Union by agreeing to a free membership in the Thousand Oaks Alliance for the Arts and keeping $5 or more in a member savings account.

Hughes Federal Credit Union - 2.12% APY

  • Term (months): 29
  • Minimum deposit: $99,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Six months of interest ($50 minimum)
  • Membership: Anyone can join Hughes Federal by donating $10 to one of four local library nonprofits affiliated with the credit union and keeping $50 or more in a savings account.

Hughes Federal Credit Union - 2.22% APY

  • Term (months): 36
  • Minimum deposit: $99,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Six months of interest ($50 minimum)
  • Membership: Anyone can join Hughes Federal by donating $10 to one of four local library nonprofits affiliated with the credit union and keeping $50 or more in a savings account.

Premier America Credit Union - 2.30% APY

  • Term (months): 60
  • Minimum deposit: $100,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Six months of interest
  • Membership: Anyone can join Premier America Credit Union by agreeing to a free membership in the Thousand Oaks Alliance for the Arts and keeping $5 or more in a member savings account.

What Is a Jumbo CD?

A certificate of deposit is a product offered by banks and credit unions to attract lump-sum consumer funds that stay on deposit, without withdrawals, for an agreed upon time period, or term. In exchange, institutions are willing to pay consumers a higher rate of return on those funds than if they were held in a more liquid savings or money market account.

A jumbo CD, in turn, is simply a certificate account that requires a much higher initial deposit. Traditionally, the term "jumbo" has referred to CDs requiring an investment of at least $100,000. But since no banking rules or regulations stipulate what an institution can call a jumbo CD, banks and credit unions apply the term liberally according to their deposit and marketing strategy. As such, the marketplace includes jumbo CDs, or sometimes "mini jumbos," requiring just $25,000 or $50,000.

Key Takeaways

  • Jumbo CDs are simply a variety of conventional certificates of deposit, requiring a higher initial deposit to open. Characteristics such as having a fixed maturity term and rate, and charging a penalty for early withdrawals, are the same for jumbo and regular certificates.
  • The term "jumbo" should be thought of as a marketing term and not assumed to guarantee that the rate will be higher than what you can earn from a standard CD. Finding the best CD rate for a large deposit will involve shopping both regular and jumbo products.
  • As with standard certificates, some of the top jumbo CDs are offered by credit unions. Though membership is required to bank with a credit union, the ones we include in our rankings offer an easy membership path to anyone in the country.

What's the Difference Between Regular, Jumbo, and IRA CDs?

Aside from higher deposit requirements, jumbo CDs function in the same way as regular CDs. The depositor chooses a CD term based on how long they are willing to commit their funds and decides how much to deposit. The bank or credit union then provides an agreement documenting how much interest they will pay on the CD, what the compounding period will be, and what the penalty policy is for any withdrawals made prior to the CD's maturity date.

An important factor for CD shoppers to consider is that almost any CD can function as a jumbo CD whether or not that terminology appears in the certificate's name. For instance, a regular CD with a minimum deposit requirement of only $1,000 doesn't prevent the consumer from making a large deposit into that CD. That's because most CDs either don't have a maximum deposit cap or the maximum is set at a high $250,000, or even $1 million.

The main difference to consider, therefore, between most conventional and jumbo CDs is the rate you can earn. Though institutions are in theory willing to pay higher interest on larger deposits than smaller ones, in practice the premium earned for depositing $100,000 into a CD vs. just $1,000 is often quite marginal. For that reason, CD shoppers are wise to research the top current rates for both jumbo and regular CDs to determine which institution's product will provide the highest return for their deposit amount.

Always carefully review a certificate of deposit's terms as provided by the bank or credit union before providing your final signature of acceptance and funding the account. In particular, be sure you've reviewed and are comfortable with the stated early withdrawal policy.

As for IRA CDs, these are certificates that behave in all the same ways as regular or jumbo CDs except that they are tax-sheltered according to the IRS' rules for IRA accounts. They are simply another type of retirement account or vehicle, and they are often used for funds a saver wants invested more conservatively than a securities investment offers and with a focus on capital preservation, since CD balances generally do not lose principal.

As tax-favored retirement products, IRA CDs involve an additional penalty policy for any withdrawals made before retirement age, along the same lines as an early withdrawal from any other kind of IRA account.

You'll find that some banks and credit unions lump their regular and IRA CDs together in the same product menu, while others will have a separate menu—and possibly rates—for their IRA-eligible CD accounts.

How Do Regular, Jumbo, and Super Jumbo CD Rates Compare?

A look at the FDIC's weekly average rates for different CD terms, calculated across all 4,000+ FDIC banks, shows that, on average, jumbo CDs pay more than standard CDs. However, the margin is small. For instance, the average 1-year standard CD currently pays 0.32% APY, while the FDIC average for 1-year jumbo CDs with a $100,000 minimum is just two basis points higher at 0.34% APY.

If comparing a regular CD and a jumbo CD at the same institution, the jumbo certificate rate will usually be higher, if only by a small amount. However, what matters most to the savvy CD shopper is how much the best regular CD pays vs. the best jumbo CD, regardless of institution. And this is where standard CDs have an advantage.

The number of banks and credit unions that offer regular CDs on a nationwide basis runs above 200. In contrast, only about 50 institutions market nationally available jumbo CDs. So the standard CD marketplace—and competition—is about four times the size of the jumbo market.

In addition, the best CD rates in the country are often special promotions and limited-time CD offers. For instance, a bank may offer one or two CD terms as specials, with an elevated rate compared to its regular array of certificates. In contrast, it is rare to encounter a jumbo CD special.

As a result, a CD shopper will often find they can do as well, or even better, with a top-paying standard CD vs. a jumbo certificate—as evidenced by our bulleted comparison above.

Super jumbo CDs are even less common than jumbo CDs, with only a few major institutions offering a product by that name. The biggest player with a super jumbo CD on their product menu is USAA Bank, which offers regular CDs with a minimum of $1,000, jumbo CDs at $95,000, and super jumbo certificates at $175,000. Currently, however, the rates across these tiers are curiously the same except for minor APY differences in a few terms.

There are, however, jumbo CDs with larger minimums than $95,000 or $100,000, even if the institutions that offer them don't call them super jumbos. The most common tier above $100,000 is a minimum deposit of $250,000.

How Safe Are Jumbo CDs?

Generally speaking, an investment in a jumbo CD is just as safe as a deposit made in a conventional CD or any other account at the bank. That's because FDIC insurance (and NCUA insurance for credit unions) doesn't distinguish on the types of deposit products it covers. Its limits are strictly defined by a dollar threshold, which is $250,00 of coverage from both the FDIC and NCUA.

Note, however, that the $250,000 limit applies per person and per institution. So coverage can be increased significantly by spreading deposits across accounts held by more than one person (e.g., two spouses) or at more than one institution.

In any case, it's important to be aware of any situation where you might approach the $250,000 threshold. If you open two $100,000 CDs at one bank, for instance, but also have another $100,000 in checking and money market accounts at that same institution, $50,000 of your deposits would be unprotected by the FDIC should the bank fail. Whether the funds are in regular or jumbo CDs will have no bearing.

Are Jumbo CDs Negotiable?

Whether or not a CD is negotiable is typically a function of how the CD was acquired, rather than whether it is standard or jumbo in size. Certificates opened directly with a bank or credit union are held in the depositor's name and are rarely negotiable. They can be liquidated only according to the bank's policy on early withdrawals and the associated penalty.

Alternatively, CDs can be opened through brokerage firms, and these certificates, called brokered CDs, are bought and sold on a secondary market. Instead of going to a bank to open one of these certificates, you do so via your account at a brokerage house (e.g., Vanguard, Fidelity, etc.), and multiple CDs from more than one institution can be held in a single brokerage account, making the process of tracking and managing more than one certificate much simpler.

The trade-off for this convenience is two-fold. First, the rates of return on brokered CDs are usually less competitive than direct bank CDs. Second, if you want to withdraw your funds from a brokered CD, you cannot simply liquidate it and pay the bank a penalty. Instead, you must put the CD up for sale on the secondary market operated by the brokerage, and the price you receive (which depends on the current rate environment) is far from predictable.