CIT Bank Review: High-Yield Savings Accounts, Money Markets, and CDs

CIT Bank is an online bank offering competitive high yield savings, money market, and CDs. This review analyzes current rates and the best ways to use them.

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CIT Bank offers a variety of online banking services, including high yield savings accounts, money market accounts, CDs, and more. Learn whether CIT Bank is right for you in this review.

Interest rates are on the rise but all is not lost. Sure, the days of refinancing your mortgage for 3% may be over for now, but rising interest rates also offer some opportunities – like the chance to earn more interest on your deposit accounts.

Enter CIT Bank.

CIT Bank is a publicly-traded, FDIC insured financial institution offering high-yield savings accounts, money market accounts, and other online banking services throughout the United States. Even throughout the pandemic, their interest rates stayed extremely competitive while other popular bank chains lagged. They are a tried and true favorite of ours, and a bank we have personally used to hold our own money.

Currently, our favorite CIT Bank product is their Savings Connect account. This account combines the benefits of a high-yield online savings account with an eChecking account. It also offers a top tier rate of 4.05% APY when you make a total of $200 in deposits each month.

The CIT Bank Money Market and Savings Builder accounts are also solid options. The Savings Builder Account currently offers a rate of up to 1.00% APY. The Money Market Account offers an even better rate of 1.55% APY. CD rates have also seen a resurgence, with CIT’s 11-Month No-Penalty CD rate coming in at a very nice 4.10% APY.

If you want to earn more interest on your savings, CIT Bank can help. Let’s take a closer look at their offerings so you can find the right fit!

CIT Bank at a Glance

  • Traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: CIT)
  • Internet banking available throughout U.S.
  • Subsidiary of First-Citizens Bank & Trust Company

CIT Bank Products

  • Savings Connect Account – Up to 4.05% APY
  • 11-Month No-Penalty CD – 4.10% APY
  • Money Market Account – 1.55% APY
  • Savings Builder Account – Up to 1.00% APY
  • Interest bearing eChecking account
  • Multiple CD Options
  • Small business and home loans available

CIT Bank: Pros and Cons

CIT Bank: Things We LikeCIT Bank: Things We Don’t Like
Savings Connect conveniently combines savings and checking account while earning one of the best rates on the marketNo physical branch locations
Money Market and Savings Builder accounts offer solid top tier ratesNo ATM access to Savings Builder or MMA through ATM (although, it’s easy to transfer online)
No monthly fees $1,000 minimum to open term CDs is a bit high
Flexible CD options and very competitive rates
Small minimum deposit requirements for Savings Builder and MMA
FDIC Insured

Who Is CIT Bank?

CIT Bank logo

Although CIT Bank may not be familiar to you, they’ve definitely been around the block. Founded in 2000, CIT Bank was recently acquired by First-Citizens Bank & Trust Company and operates under the First Citizens BancShares umbrella of companies.

CIT Bank trades publicly on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: CIT) and operates online banking services throughout the United States. As a member of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), eligible accounts held at CIT Bank offer the same FDIC protection offered at other Member FDIC banks.

CIT Bank Review: Personal Banking Products

This CIT Bank review focuses primarily on the company’s online personal banking options, specifically the different savings vehicles they offer. If you are interested, the company can also meet other banking needs – including home loans, small business, loans, and more – but we will not cover those options here.

Let’s take a closer look at CIT Bank’s personal banking products, including their high yield savings account, money market account, eChecking account, and CD rates.

Savings Connect Account

The CIT Bank Savings Connect account is our favorite of CIT’s personal banking products. This account combines the earning power of an online savings account with the flexibility of an eChecking account. It also comes with a super competitive top tier rate of 4.05% APY.

To earn the top tier rate, simply make a total of $200 in deposits every month – $100 into your savings account and $100 into your eChecking. The account also comes with an ATM card so you can access your money easily. CIT Bank does not charge any ATM fees of their own, plus they’ll give you $30 in credit each month toward ATM fees at other banks.

Opening a new Savings Connect account requires a deposit of just $100 for each account – the savings and the eChecking. The accounts must be opened at the same time, and the owner of the accounts must match. There are no monthly maintenance fees and the account is FDIC insured.

Money Market Account

CIT Bank also has one of the most competitive money market accounts you will find online.

This account offers a rate of 1.55% APY and only requires a $100 deposit to open. There are no opening or monthly service fees, and interest compounds daily so you can make the most on your money. It is also insured by the FDIC up to the standard $250,000.

Like most money market accounts, you are limited in the number of monthly transactions you can make. In this case, you’re allowed to make up to six transfers or withdrawals during a statement cycle. So, while you wouldn’t want to use this account to pay your monthly bills, CIT Bank’s money market account is an excellent spot to keep your emergency fund or travel savings.

Savings Builder Account

The Savings Builder Account from CIT Bank is still one of our favorite savings accounts on the market.

The top tier rate easily makes it one of the best high-yield savings accounts available. It is also considerably higher than you’ll find at many large “chain” competitors.

With two tiers of interest rates, this account actually encourages you to save. By making a deposit of just $100 a month, you’ll earn an interest rate of 1.00% APY. That’s a stupid simple bar to cross and an excellent goal to shoot for if you’re struggling to save. You’re also eligible to earn the top rate if you keep a balance above $25,000, regardless of your monthly deposits.

Although the Savings Connect Account provides a higher APY and has more or less replaced it, this is still a solid spot to set money aside for any type of short-term savings goal – like a travel fund, emergency fund, new car fund, etc. Not only does it earn a great rate, it also keeps your money separate from your other cash so you don’t accidentally spend it somewhere else.

CIT Bank Certificates of Deposit (CDs)

Over the last several years, rates on CDs have suffered across the board. With interest rates once again on the rise, considering a CD finally makes sense again.

CIT Bank offers a handful of CDs, each with their own pros and cons. The uber flexible No-Penalty CD is my favorite of the bunch. This 11-month CD allows you to withdraw your original deposit – plus interest – before the maturation date without facing any early withdrawal penalties. As far as I can tell, the only stipulation is that you cannot withdraw your funds within 7 days of funding. After that, you’re golden.

Even better, the No-Penalty CD offers one of the highest interest rates of the bunch – an impressive 4.10% APY. That is a great rate for CD of this length, especially with so much flexibility and in this volatile market. The No-Penalty CD requires a minimum opening deposit of $1,000 and comes with zero account opening or maintenance fees.

Traditional Term CDs, ranging from 6 months to 5 years in length, are also available. Our current favorites are the 13 and 18-Month CDs. (Although these CDs currently offer higher rates, the flexibility of the No-Penalty CD still makes it our top choice.) Like the No-Penalty CD, all Term CDs come without any account opening or maintenance fees and require a minimum opening deposit of $1,000.

CIT Bank also offers a Jumbo CD for large deposits. There is a required minimum deposit of $100,000, so these aren’t going to be available to everybody.

Like their savings accounts, all CIT Bank CDs are FDIC-insured, and interest is compounded daily.

To help you compare, I’ve listed the current rates of CIT Bank CDs in the table below.

ProductRates*TermMinimum Opening DepositDescription
Term CDsUp to 4.75% APY*Up to 5 Years$1,000Low minimum balance, various term lengths
No-Penalty CDUp to 4.10% APY*11 Months$1,000No penalties on early withdrawals (7 days after funding)
Jumbo CDsUp to 0.50% APY*Up to 5 Years$100,000For large deposits
*Current as of 01/09/2023

CIT Bank eChecking

For years, one of the CIT Bank’s most glaring weak spots was that they didn’t offer an online checking account. Now they do, and it even earns a little bit of interest.

With the CIT Bank eChecking account, you’ll enjoy “mostly” free checking while still earning interest. Balances under $25,000 earn 0.10% APY while balances above $25,000 earn 0.25% APY.

The account also comes with its own debit card and can be used with mobile pay options like Zelle, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, and Bill Pay. They do not charge ATM fees, and you’ll be reimbursed for up to $30 a month on ATM fees charged by other banks.

CIT Bank’s eChecking account doesn’t offer a huge interest rate, but — if you’re looking for an interest bearing checking account — this might serve. If you’re looking for an account to pay your bills and stash your savings, consider using the Savings Connect Account instead.

>> Get Started with the CIT Bank eChecking Account

Benefits of Using CIT Bank

  • Top Tier Savings Connect Rates — As we’ve discussed, the Savings Connect account offers an excellent top tier rate of up to 4.05% APY. This is well above the national average and considerably better than rates at some of CIT Bank’s more well-known national competitors. The offer is good even for small balances. Simply make deposits totaling just $200 a month to earn the rate.
  • Savings Builder and Money Market Accounts — The Savings Builder and Money Market accounts are also something to consider. At 1.55% APY for the MMA and a top rate of 1.00% APY for the Savings Builder, these are also two solid spots to stash your long-term savings.
  • Low Minimum Deposit Requirements — At CIT Bank, you can open a money market or high yield savings account with as little as $100.
  • No Fees — Online Banking with CIT Bank is almost completely free. There are no account opening or management fees and just a $1 minimum balance requirement on the high yield savings accounts. (Penalties may apply for withdrawing funds early on certain CD products.)
  • Flexible CD Options — Interest rates on the 13 and 18-month Term CDs are extremely competitive, plus CIT Bank offers a very flexible No-Penalty CD that is definitely worth a look.
  • FDIC Insured — All eligible deposit accounts with CIT Bank are FDIC insured to the usual $250,000.

Where CIT Bank Falls Short

While I believe their Savings Connect, Savings Builder and Money Market accounts are some of the best you’ll find, there are still a few things to be desired.

I’m still not a huge fan of the CD rates at CIT Bank. Outside of the three CD options we’ve mentioned (No-Penalty CD, 13-Month Term CD, and 18-Month Term CD), the CD rates are pretty paltry. Most are considerably lower than those offered by the Savings Connect, Savings Builder, and Money Market accounts. The $1,000 minimum deposit is also quite steep, especially considering the mediocre rates. Since the savings accounts and MMAs provide far greater access to your money, I’d opt for one of these over the majority of CIT Bank’s CDs at this time.

Additionally, not having physical branch locations may turn off some potential customers. No ATM access for the Savings Builder and money market accounts could also be a pain for some, even though transferring money online is extremely easy. You can also opt for the new Savings Connect account which offers an ATM card and up to $30 a month in reimbursement for ATM fees at other banks.

How to Use a CIT Savings Account or MMA

Wondering why you might want to open the a CIT Bank Savings Connect, Savings Builder, or Money Market Account? Here are a few ideas on how to use it:

  • Travel Fund / Savings Goals — Keeping a separate savings account to meet specific savings goals — like travel, a new car, etc. — is always a good idea. A special account keeps this money separate from your general funds, helping you avoid spending it on items it was never meant for.
  • Emergency Fund — An emergency fund is one of the main pillars of financial health. A fully-furnished emergency fund should hold at least 3 to 6 months’ worth of expenses to be used in case of a financial crisis. Like saving for a goal, a high-yield savings account is a great way to keep your e-fund safe and separate from your general accounts.
  • Savings Protection — Spreading your money around to a few different banks is never a bad idea. This is especially true if you keep more than $250,000 in savings. By keeping accounts at multiple banks, more of your money is insured by the FDIC in the event that one (or multiple) banks go under.

Is CIT Bank Right for You?

Online banking is more popular than ever. If we learned one thing during the pandemic, i’s clear that consumers are moving more and more toward banking online rather than visiting brick and mortar branch locations. That’s a huge shift from even just a few years ago, but it goes to show you that times have changed.

When interest rates plummeted at traditional banks during the Great Recession and again during the coronavirus pandemic, rates at online banks remained relatively strong. Now that rates are again on the rise, the best savings and CD rates can (usually) still be found at online banks like CIT Bank.

If you need a place to store your emergency fund while still earning a decent interest rate, CIT Bank is a good option. Likewise, stashing your cash with CIT Bank is a good idea for things like a travel fund or other savings goals.

With a top tier rate of 4.05% APY on their Savings Connect account, 1.00% APY on their Savings Builder account, and 1.55% APY for money market accounts, CIT Bank is highly competitive with other online savings products. So, if you’re looking for a place where you can make a little bit of money off of your savings, CIT Bank may be it.

How to Open a CIT Bank Account

Opening an account at CIT Bank is super simple and takes roughly 10 minutes. Be sure to have your driver’s license and Social Security number handy. Here’s how to get started:

  1. Open a Savings Connect account, Savings Builder account, money market accounteChecking account, or a new CD here.
  2. Complete the application.
  3. Fund your new account.

To fund your account, you’ll also need to provide information for the financial institution from which you are transferring the funds. You can fund your new account in one of three ways:

  1. Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) – free of charge
  2. Personal Check – free of charge
  3. Wire Transfer – free of charge

CIT Bank FAQs

Is CIT Bank FDIC insured?

Yes. Each deposit account at CIT Bank is insured by the FDIC to the typical $250,000 per depositor.

What services and account options does CIT Bank offer?

CIT Bank offers a whole host of personal and business banking options to meet customers needs – including savings accounts, CDs, money market accounts, echecking, mortgages, and more.

Are there any fees to open an account with CIT Bank?

CIT Bank does not charge account opening fees or monthly service fees on savings, money market, or CD accounts.

How can I access my CIT Bank deposits?

CIT Bank Savings Connect and eChecking accounts come with an ATM card you can use to access your funds. They do not charge any ATM fees, although you’ll receive up to $30 a month in credit toward ATM fees from other banks.

To access money in your Savings Builder or money market accounts, you can request an electronic funds transfer (ACH) or paper check free of charge. Wire transfers are also available for a small fee. Keep in mind that certain accounts may be limited to the number of transactions you can make per month. Additionally, early withdrawal from CD accounts may result in fees.

CIT Bank Review: The Bottom Line

Overall, I think CIT Bank is an excellent choice for online banking customers.

The CIT Bank Savings Connect account is currently our favorite product. Combining the power of an online savings account with the flexibility of eChecking, this account offers a very comptetitive top tier rate of 4.05% APY when you make deposits totaling $200 each month.

CIT Bank’s Money Market Account is another great spot for storing your emergency fund or travel fund. Again, the account offers a rate of 1.55% APY and requires just $100 to open. Sure, transactions are limited, but – when used for long-term savings – that really shouldn’t matter.

If you’re considering CDs, the 11-Month No-Penalty CD deserves a look. This super flexible CD allows you to earn a very nice 4.10% APY, plus you can withdraw your principal and interest prior to the maturation date without getting whacked with a penalty. The 13 and 18-Month Term CDs offer even higher rates but less flexibility.

If you’ve made it this far, thanks so much for reading our complete CIT Bank review! Please leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

Earn More on Your Savings – Get up to 4.05% APY when you open a new Savings Connect account at CIT Bank. That’s easily one of the best rates available in the current environment. Follow the link to get started.

CIT Bank Review
  • Savings Connect Account
  • Money Market Account
  • Savings Builder Account
  • CD rates
  • eChecking Account
  • Fees
  • Mobile App
  • Ease of Use
  • Customer Service
  • Range of Product Offerings
  • Interest Rates
Overall
4.1

CIT Bank Review Summary

The CIT Bank Savings Connect account is simply our favorite savings account on the market right now. Boasting an impressive top tier rate that is easy to obtain, this savings account is hard to beat. It’s also the perfect place to store your emergency fund, travel fund, and other specialty savings goals.

CIT Bank’s Savings Builder and Money Market Accounts are also solid spots for savings. Again, the account offers an impressive rate and has a low minimum to open. The 11-Month No-Penalty CD also offers a great rate with very flexible terms.

With no monthly fees and extremely competitive top-tier rates, CIT Bank is easily one of the best online banks for personal banking.

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5 Comments

  1. I’ve been seeing CIT bank everywhere lately. Pretty good sign up bonus you don’t see those too often for savings accounts. Glad to see interest rates on savings accounts slowly start to creep up.

    It’s also amazing how much better interest rates on online savings are compared to the big banks. Bank of America has been trying to get me to sign up for their savings account…with .02% interest! Thank goodness for online banking options.

    1. So true! Online banking is about the only spot where it’s actually worth parking your money in a savings account.

  2. What are the options for withdrawing money from the HYSA?

  3. Just signed up for my CIT account for our Emergency Fund through your link. I think we are going to like this a lot. Thanks!

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