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Published: Aug 31, 2023 11 min read

If you're looking for a savings account that will help you grow your money without charging you pointless monthly fees, a Discover high-yield savings account might be worth looking into. Its lack of fees means you can sit back and watch your savings do what they're supposed to do — grow. In this article, we'll cover the pros and cons, offerings, accessibility, customer reviews, and cost of Discover's savings account.

When you put your extra funds into a savings account, you want to see to it that your money is working for you. This is why a high-yield savings account is such a great option. If you're unsure of what a high-yield savings account is, it can be boiled down to a savings account that allows you to make more money back in interest than a typical savings account (i.e. it has a higher annual percentage yield). Discover offers a great high-yield savings option, called the Online Savings Account, which stands out from the competition due to its lack of fees and account minimums. It also offers a competitive APY, although it's not the highest you'll find.

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Earn 4.25% APY* with a Discover Savings Account 

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Discover high-yield savings accounts pros and cons

Pros
  • No fees
  • No minimum balance requirement
Cons
  • Higher APYs available elsewhere
  • No physical branches available

Pros explained

No fees

A notable aspect of Discover’s high-yield savings account is its lack of monthly maintenance fees. Furthermore, there are no insufficient funds fees or account closure fees. As many banks are known to sneak in these little charges, it can be refreshing to find a high-yield savings option that won't cut into your savings.

No minimum balance requirement

The Discover savings account has no minimum balance requirement, in addition to no minimum opening deposit. Seeing as some financial institutions do require a minimum deposit to open accounts with higher APYs, Discover’s savings account may be a good compromise. Moreover, the lack of a minimum deposit means that you can virtually open the account and start saving at any time.

Cons explained

Higher APYs available elsewhere

While Discover's rates are certainly competitive, there are higher-yield savings account options elsewhere. For example, Evergreen Bank Group, CIT Bank and Popular Direct all offer high-yield savings accounts with APYs above 5%, approximately one percentage point higher than what's offered by Discover.

No physical branches

As Discover offers a purely online product, there are no physical branches you could visit to speak to a banker in person should you have questions or concerns about your account. However, Discover claims that online banking means a lack of overhead, which translates to savings that it can pass on to the customer in the form of competitive rates and no fees. Discover also states that its 24/7 online and phone assistance offers more convenience than a physical bank, but anyone who's dealt with a frustrating call center representative as opposed to an in-person banker with whom they've formed a pleasant relationship knows that this may not always be the case.

Discover high-yield savings account offerings

There are many different types of savings accounts to choose from depending on your financial goals and needs. Discover offers three high-yield savings options, which come with different benefits and drawbacks. Here's what you need to know to decide which one is right for you.

Online savings account

The standard Discover Online Savings Account™ is a great option for those who want a simple savings product that will offer a competitive APY and no associated fees. It's the best option available for customers who will be opening an account with an initial deposit of less than $2,500.

When it comes to accessing your funds, the information on the Discover high-yield savings withdrawal limits is a bit confusing. Discover states that there are no limits on ATM withdrawals, but that certain types of withdrawals, such as international or domestic wire transfers, have a limit of six transactions per month, with the potential for your account to be closed should you frequently exceed that amount. However, Discover states in its fine print that they are not currently enforcing the monthly transaction limit on money market and savings accounts.

While this likely won't be a concern for the average savings customer who plans to deposit their funds and not touch them save for the occasional ATM withdrawal, be sure to talk to a Discover customer service representative if you think that you might frequently need to move money in the form of wire transfers.

Money market account

Think of a money market account as a hybrid between a savings account and a checking account. While it offers the high APY usually reserved for savings accounts, you can also access funds via a debit card or checks. The Discover money market account offers a slightly lower APY than its standard high-yield savings option with the added benefit of a debit card and checks. Furthermore, there are also no monthly maintenance fees and no insufficient funds fees, in addition to no required minimum balance. However, this account does require a minimum opening deposit of $2,500.

Certificate of deposit

A certificate of deposit (CD) is a savings account that will typically provide an extremely competitive APY, with the caveat that you cannot touch your funds for a certain amount of time. With the highest APY of all its savings products, the Discover high-yield CD is a great option for those who want to get the biggest return possible on their savings and who know they will not need to access that money for the foreseeable future. This account requires a minimum opening deposit of $2,500, with no monthly maintenance fees. 24-month and 30-month term lengths are also available, but the APY decreases slightly. Just as any other CD, Discover charges penalties for early withdrawal.

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Discover high-yield savings account pricing

None of the Discover savings offerings have monthly maintenance fees, which means you won't have to pay a monthly cost to use these products. Discover is an appealing option for its overall lack of fees, although bear in mind that the CD accounts do have penalties should you withdraw your funds before the end of the agreed-upon term. Furthermore, both the CD and money market products require a minimum deposit of $2,500 when you open these accounts.

Discover high-yield savings account financial stability

Discover Bank has a BBB rating from Standard & Poor's, a BBB+ rating from Fitch, and a Baa1 rating from Moody's. These ratings all indicate that the institution is stable for the foreseeable future, with a fairly low risk of default. However, these aren't the highest ratings available to an institution, which means that although Discover is projected to remain stable, the risk of default still exists.

Discover high-yield savings account accessibility

It's important that you have easy access to the financial institution where you choose to save your money. Here's what you need to know about accessing the Discover high-yield savings account.

Availability

The Discovery high-yield savings account is available to customers in all 50 states, in addition to all other United States territories, including Puerto Rico.

Contact information

Those who wish to open a new account or ask a general question can contact Discover customer service at 1-800-347-7000. Representatives are available 24/7, 365 days a year. Existing customers can access customer service via online chat by logging into their banking portal with their Discover savings account login.

User experience

The high-yield savings section of the Discover website provides a great experience for new customers and applicants. Aside from the ease of opening an account, the Discover high-yield savings calculator gives you an estimation of how much you could earn in interest depending on how much you deposit and how much time passes. The educational material is informative and easy to digest, which means you'll know what you're signing up for as you complete the Discover high-yield savings application.

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Discover high-yield savings account customer satisfaction

Discover is currently not accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB), where it holds an A+ rating. Customer reviews on the BBB website aren't fantastic, with the company receiving one out of five stars. The majority of poor customer reviews are related to the company's credit products, although many do express frustration in dealing with Discover customer service, which could be relevant to savings account customers.

Discover high-yield savings account FAQ

Is the Discover savings account good?

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Although Discover doesn't offer the highest APYs, its lack of fees and minimum balance requirements make it a pretty good option for a lot of customers. Furthermore, while there were no new account bonuses available at the time of this article's publication, there is occasionally a Discover savings account bonus offered to new customers.

Is Discover savings FDIC insured?

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Yes, Discover savings is FDIC insured, as are its checking and credit products.

Is the Discover savings account compounded daily?

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Discover savings account interest is compounded daily and paid monthly.

How does Discover high-yield savings work?

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When you deposit money into a Discover high-yield savings account, you earn interest on the amount in your account, which means your money will grow without any further action from you. While Discover allows its high-yield savings customers to make ATM withdrawals, the more you leave the money alone, the more it will grow.

How we evaluated Discover high-yield savings account

In evaluating the Discover high-yield savings account, we examined the following factors:

  • Annual percentage yield: We considered the APYs Discover offers versus its competitors’.
  • Fee structure: We looked at the typical fees charged to savings customers at other institutions, versus what Discover charges.
  • Range of offerings: We examined the different savings account offerings, including CDs, money market accounts, and high-yield savings.
  • Ease of use: We researched the accessibility of the Discover high-yield savings account to get an idea of the experience that users could expect.
  • Reviews and Ratings: We looked at Discover's overall credit ratings, in addition to reviews from real customers.

Summary of Money's Discover high-yield savings account review

The best high-yield savings accounts will offer you competitive APYs and fees that are on the lower side. With Discover, you will pay no account-associated fees. As an added bonus, its basic online savings account requires no minimum deposit, which means you can start saving today regardless of your current financial situation. However, you should be aware that Discover doesn't offer the highest APYs available. Also, Discover is online only, which means that this isn't a good option for those who prefer to work with a banker in person. Nonetheless, it is a great option for anyone who's content managing their savings 100% online.