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Published: Nov 08, 2023 14 min read

Synchrony is a financial services company known for its store-branded credit cards for large companies such as Walmart, Amazon and Lowe’s. Additionally, Synchrony Bank offers a large variety of consumer savings products, including money market accounts, certificates of deposit (CDs), IRAs and high-yield savings accounts.

We researched Synchrony’s high-yield savings account (HYSA) to provide a comprehensive review of its interest rates, fees, customer service and accessibility. Read on to find out if Synchrony’s HYSA account or other savings products might be a good fit for your personal finance goals.

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Best high-yield savings account for easy access to funds

One of the most attractive features of Synchrony's high-yield savings account is the variety of ways to access your funds. Unlike many other high-yield savings accounts, Synchrony’s HYSA comes with an ATM card to withdraw funds at ATMs. Additionally, you can link your savings account to an external bank account for electronic transfers, schedule wire transfers or request a transfer by phone.

Note that Synchrony imposes limits on some transactions — outgoing electronic transfers, phone transfers, wire transfers and phone or point-of-sale purchases are capped at six per statement cycle. You may be charged a $25 fee if you exceed this limit.

However, withdrawals via ATMs are unlimited, and you can use any Plus or Accel ATM at no charge. If you use an out-of-network ATM, Synchrony won’t charge a fee, but the ATM owner or operator might, and Synchrony reimburses only $5 in ATM fees per statement cycle.

Synchrony high-yield savings accounts pros and cons

Pros
  • ATM card with no limit on the number of ATM withdrawals per cycle
  • Competitive annual percentage yield (APY)
  • No monthly fees or minimum balance requirement
  • No minimum initial deposit required
Cons
  • ATM card is not the same as a debit card and may not be accepted by some businesses
  • Non-ATM withdrawals (e.g. electronic transfer) are limited to six per statement cycle
  • No physical branches

Pros explained

ATM card with no limits on the number of ATM withdrawals per cycle

Virtually all high-yield savings accounts offer withdrawals via electronic transfer, but only some include access to funds via ATMs. Synchrony Bank’s high-yield savings account includes an ATM card that you can use for free at any ATM with a Plus or Accel logo. There is no limit on how many withdrawals you can make per cycle. However, you cannot withdraw more than $1,000 per day.

Note that Synchrony doesn’t charge for using out-of-network ATMs, but you may still incur a fee from the ATM operator — and Synchrony only reimburses up to $5 in ATM fees per cycle.

Competitive annual percentage yield (APY)

Synchrony offers competitive rates on all its savings products — high-yield savings accounts, certificates of deposit (CDs) and money market accounts (MMAs). While these rates can vary, Synchrony consistently offers customers some of the highest rates available on the market.

No monthly fees or minimum balance requirement

Synchrony does not charge a monthly maintenance fee for its high-yield savings account. Additionally, there’s no minimum balance requirement. This means you’re free to withdraw funds as needed without worrying about a possible low-balance penalty or overdrafting your account as a result of a monthly fee.

No minimum initial deposit required

There is no minimum deposit requirement to open a Synchrony high-yield savings account. This is a plus for anyone who’s ready to start saving but can’t commit to a considerable sum just yet.

Cons explained

ATM card is not the same as a debit card and may not be accepted by some businesses

The ATM card included with the Synchrony high-yield savings account is not the same as a debit card, which typically carries a card network logo (e.g. Visa, Mastercard) and works anywhere that card network is accepted. Additionally, a debit card usually has a security code, called a Card Verification Code (CVV), on the back. Synchrony’s high-yield savings account card has neither of these features, so it may not be accepted by some merchants, whether for shopping online or in-person transactions.

Non-ATM withdrawals (e.g. electronic transfer) are limited to six per statement cycle

Synchrony allows only six electronic transfers or withdrawals from its high-yield savings and money market accounts each month. Point-of-sale purchases are included in this limit; the only type of withdrawal that has no limit is withdrawal by ATM card at an ATM.

This withdrawal limit for savings accounts was originally set by the Federal Reserve under Regulation D. However, in 2020, the Fed suspended this regulation, allowing banks to allow unlimited transfers and withdrawals. Some banks have done away with limits, while others have not, and Synchrony is one that still imposes this rule.

No physical branches

Synchrony does not have any physical locations, meaning customers will need to handle all their banking needs online, via mobile app or by phone. This can be a challenge for those more comfortable with in-person service.

Synchrony high-yield savings account offerings

Synchrony Bank offers a variety of savings products ranging from IRA and certificates of deposit (CD) accounts to high-yield savings and money market accounts (MMAs). These accounts come with FDIC insurance up to $250,000 per depositor, but they vary in terms of interest rates, terms, transfer limitations and tax implications. Read on to learn the details of each savings product.

High-yield savings account

Synchrony Bank's high-yield savings account features a competitive annual percentage yield (APY) and no monthly fees or minimum balance requirement. There’s also no initial deposit required to open an account. (Note, however, that accounts left with a $0 balance for more than 60 days may be subject to closure.)

You can fund a Synchrony high-yield savings account via mobile deposit on the Synchrony app, electronic transfers from external bank accounts, wire transfers or transfers coordinated by phone with a Synchrony representative. The account comes with an ATM card, and customers can withdraw up to $1,000 daily fee-free at any ATM with a Plus or Accel logo. Synchrony reimburses up to $5 in out-of-network ATM fees per statement cycle.

Interest earned on a high-yield savings account is compounded daily and is credited to the account monthly on the statement date. While Synchrony currently offers a competitive annual percentage yield, this rate is variable and can change at any time, so it's important to check the rates periodically.

Money Market account

Synchrony's money market account comes with all of the same features and benefits as the high-yield savings account, but customers also get check-writing privileges. Note that this withdrawal method is also subject to Synchrony’s cap of six withdrawals per cycle limit. Additionally, the annual percentage yield on the Money Market account is significantly lower than that of the high-yield savings account.

Certificate of deposit (CD)

Synchrony Bank also offers certificates of deposits (CDs), which earn a fixed interest rate on your deposit (principal) over a specific amount of time. When you purchase a CD, you agree to leave your money in the account for a set period of time. The end of this period, known as the maturity date, is when you will receive your principal plus the interest earned.

However, all Synchrony CD accounts allow customers to withdraw interest earned without penalty. Still, withdrawing the principal before the maturity date will result in a penalty ranging from 90 to 365 days of simple interest at the current rate.

Synchrony offers three different CD options: a standard CD, a bump-up 24-month CD and a no-penalty 11-month CD. The standard CD has terms that range from three months to five years. Interest rates differ depending on the length of term chosen, with the highest rates currently being offered for terms between six and 18 months.

The bump-up 24-month CD offers the ability to “bump up” your interest rate one time during the term, allowing you to benefit from any potential rate increases. The no-penalty 11-month CD allows customers to withdraw their principal without a penalty before the maturity date as early as six days after account funding.

IRA CD

An Individual Retirement Account Certificate of Deposit (IRA CD) is a type of retirement savings account that combines the guaranteed returns of a CD with the tax advantages of an IRA. Synchrony offers its IRA CDs in both traditional and Roth formats with access to the same term lengths offered for the standard CD.

In addition to the early withdrawal penalty associated with CDs, withdrawals from an IRA CD can also be subject to additional penalties and taxes from the IRS.

IRA money market account

Synchrony also offers an IRA money market account with no minimum balance requirement. This account is similar to the IRA CD in that it combines a money market account with the tax advantages of an IRA. While you can access the funds in this account at any time without penalty from Synchrony, you may still be subject to IRS penalties for withdrawing funds from the account prior to the age of 59.5.

Synchrony high-yield savings account pricing

Synchrony offers competitive interest rates on all of its accounts, although the annual percentage yield is especially strong on its high-yield savings account. In addition, there are no monthly maintenance fees or minimum balance requirements for its various savings accounts.

Synchrony high-yield savings account financial stability

Financial analysis firm Fitch gives Synchrony Bank a BBB- financial stability rating with a stable outlook, while Standard & Poor's has provided a BBB rating with a stable outlook. These investment grade ratings indicate that the company is able to meet its financial obligations but may be subject to some risk from adverse economic conditions. Synchrony Bank is also an FDIC-insured institution, meaning your deposits are protected up to $250,000 per depositor.

Synchrony high-yield savings account accessibility

Availability

Synchrony Bank serves U.S. customers in all 50 states, Washington, D.C. and U.S. territories. However, the company has no physical locations, so you can only access your account online or by phone.

Contact information

You can reach Synchrony Bank's customer service team via live chat on the company's website or mobile app. Customer service representatives are also available by phone at 1-866-226-5638, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET and on weekends from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET.

User experience

Synchrony's website and mobile app simplify the management of your high-yield savings account. The intuitive and user-friendly interface allows effortless fund transfers between accounts, provides visibility into check deposits made via the mobile app and lets you check your account balance easily.

Additionally, the company offers detailed product pages displaying current interest rates. Plus, its website features a comprehensive FAQ section, ensuring quick answers to common questions.

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Synchrony high-yield savings account customer satisfaction

Third-party customer reviews for Synchrony Bank are mixed. However, most reviews are for Synchrony's credit card offerings, not its savings products. The few customer complaints related to its savings products mention issues with website login and difficulties with ATM card activation, while positive reviews focus on its competitive rates, easy-to-use website and responsive customer service.

The company isn't accredited by the Better Business Bureau but does hold an A+ rating from the organization. It also demonstrates its dedication to customer service on the platform, with nearly 2,500 customer complaints successfully closed out in the past 12 months.

Synchrony high-yield savings account FAQs

Is interest on Synchrony Bank high-yield savings compounded daily?

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Yes, Synchrony Bank's high-yield savings interest is compounded daily.

When does Synchrony high-yield savings pay interest?

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Synchrony Bank's high-yield online savings account pays interest monthly on the statement cycle date.

How many withdrawals per month can you make on Synchrony's high-yield savings account?

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You can make as many withdrawals as you like using your Synchrony ATM card at ATMs, but you cannot exceed the daily withdrawal limit of $1,000. However, outgoing wire transfers, electronic transfers to external accounts, phone transfers and point-of-sale purchases are limited to six transactions per statement cycle. You may incur a fee of $25 if you exceed this limit.

How we evaluated Synchrony high-yield savings account

We evaluated Synchrony’s online savings products and determined the most important criteria. Our research led us to consider the following as paramount:

  • Interest rates: We evaluated the various Synchrony Bank savings rates and compared them to the best savings account rates from other companies.
  • Accessibility: We looked at ease of access to account funds, online services and customer service support.
  • Fees: We considered fees associated with opening a Synchrony savings account as well as whether there are any monthly or annual fees.
  • Withdrawal methods and limits: We looked into the withdrawal methods available for Synchrony Bank’s high-yield savings accounts, as well as any limits imposed on withdrawals.
  • Customer reviews: We looked at Synchrony Bank high-yield savings account customer reviews and complaints to get an overall feel for customer satisfaction.

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

Whether you're just learning what a high-yield savings account is or already searching for the best high-yield savings accounts, it's important to consider what separates a great product from the rest.

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