American Express National Bank has competitive APYs on CDs and high-yield savings accounts, but their checking is only available to cardholders



You probably know about American Express because of their credit cards, but did you know that they have a banking division—American Express National Bank—that offers bank accounts with competitive annual percentage yields (APYs)? 

Founded in 1850, American Express is a financial services company headquartered in New York City. Their banking division is an online-only bank headquartered in Utah, with no physical branch locations. In addition to everyday bank accounts, the bank offers consumer and commercial banking products like personal loans to business checking accounts. All of the bank’s deposit accounts are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).

American Express National Bank offerings 

American Express National Bank offers three deposit accounts: checking, savings, and certificates of deposit (CDs). They offer deposit accounts for retirement savings, including IRA CDs and IRA high-yield savings accounts.

Checking and savings accounts 

Rewards Checking Account

Checking accounts with American Express National Bank are only available to existing Amex credit cardholders. You’ll need to have had your American Express credit card for at least three months to qualify for the checking account. 

While many banks offer low to no interest on checking accounts, the American Express National Bank checking account offers a solid 1.00% APY with no monthly maintenance fees or minimum opening deposit requirements.

All rates and fees are current as of August 21, 2023, and are subject to change. 

  • APY: 1.00%
  • Minimum opening deposit requirement: $0
  • Maintenance fees: $0
  • Overdraft fee: $0
  • ATM foreign transaction fee: 2.7%
  • Replacement debit cards: $0
  • Check supplies: Costs vary based on items ordered
  • Cashier’s checks: $0
  • ACH transfers to and from your account: $0

After you sign up for the checking account, you can fund your account via online transfer, direct deposit, or mobile check deposit but not cash deposit. The checking account also comes with a Rewards debit card and check-writing privileges. 

You can use the Rewards debit card to withdraw cash from ATMs and for purchases online and in-store. You’ll earn one Membership Rewards point for every $2 worth of eligible debit card purchases. Membership Rewards can be redeemed for flights, gift cards, a statement credit, and more. If you’re already an Amex cardholder, using the debit card in conjunction with the credit card could help you accrue points faster.

If you want to withdraw cash, Amex has a network of 37,000 MoneyPass® ATMs nationwide that you can access for free. However, if you opt to use an ATM not within their network, you could be charged by the ATM provider, as Amex doesn’t offer ATM reimbursement fees.

High-yield savings account 

American Express National Bank’s high-yield savings account has a generous APY and a lack of fees and minimums. 

All rates and fees are current as of August 21, 2023, and are subject to change. 

  • APY: 4.25%
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Maintenance fees: $0
  • Compounding frequency: Interest is calculated daily and credited to your account monthly

You can open this savings account online with no minimum deposit. This account is an excellent option if you’re just starting to build your savings. Since the high-yield savings account isn’t for everyday spending, you won’t receive checks or a debit card. 

When you want to access your money, you’ll have to do so via electronic transfer. American Express National Bank currently doesn’t impose monthly withdrawal limits on its high-yield savings account, so you can withdraw money as frequently as needed.

American Express National Bank savings rate compared to current top rates*.

Certificates of deposit (CDs)

American Express National Bank has CDs with term lengths ranging from 12 months to 60 months. Their rates are competitive on their one-year and 24-month terms, but other terms offer lackluster rates. 

Term Length  APY
12 months 4.75%
18 months 1.00%
24 months 4.25%
36 months 1.15%
48 months 1.20%
60 months 3.00%
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Compounding frequency: Interest is calculated daily and credited to your account monthly
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Varies by term length
    • Less than 12 months: 90 days’ interest
    • 12 months to less than 48 months: 270 days’ interest
    • 48 months to less than 60 months: 365 days’ interest
    • 60 months and more: 540 days’ interest

Amex also offers the option to withdraw interest from your CD before maturity, but you’ll earn less interest overall if you tap funds early.

IRA Certificates of deposit & IRA high-yield savings accounts

Amrican Express National Bank has IRA CDs and high-yield savings accounts for customers who want to take a more conservative approach to investing for retirement—both with no minimum deposit. 

All accounts classified as IRAs are subject to annual contribution limits established by the IRS. 

IRA CD terms

Term Length  APY
12 months 4.75%
18 months 1.00%
24 months 4.25%
36 months 1.15%
48 months 1.20%
60 months 3.00%
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Compounding frequency: Interest is calculated daily and credited to your account quarterly
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Varies depending on term length, and IRAs are subject to IRS taxes and penalties too
    • Less than 12 months: 90 days’ interest
    • 12 months to less than 48 months: 270 days’ interest
    • 48 months to less than 60 months: 365 days’ interest
    • 60 months and more: 540 days’ interest

IRA high-yield savings accounts

  • APY: 4.25%
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Maintenance fees: $0
  • Compounding frequency: Interest is calculated daily and credited to your account quarterly

Other services American Express National Bank offers 

  • Personal loans. Only available to Amex cardholders, loans range from $3,500 to $40,000 and interest rates vary. There are no application or origination fees or pre-payment penalties, but there are late payment fees. 
  • Business checking account. This account is available to business owners and offers a 1.30% APY on balances up to $500,000. There are no monthly maintenance fees.

American Express National Bank platform and customer support 

You can access your American Express account either online or via the app, which is available in the Google Play Store and Apple App Store. You can make mobile check deposits, digitally transfer money, and check your account balance through the website or app. 

Customer service for consumer savings and checking accounts is available 24/7 via phone call. For personal loans, help is available Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST.

Pros and cons of American Express National Bank

If you want a high APY on your savings accounts or already have an Amex credit card, banking with American Express National Bank could help you earn more on your savings. 

Opening a checking account requires an Amex card, so if you use Amex for your banking and credit card needs, you could get more benefits—you’ll score a 1% APY on your checking account and earn Membership Rewards points on eligible debit card purchases.

If you don’t have an Amex card, you can still sign-up for their high-yield savings account and CDs and enjoy competitive interest rates.

Pros

  • No minimum opening deposits. Open your account with any amount.
  • No fees. Lack of fees on checking and savings accounts keeps more cash in your pocket. 
  • Competitive APYs. Rates on savings accounts, checking accounts, and CDs far exceed national averages. 

Cons

  • No physical branch locations. If you prefer a local branch, you’ll want to explore other banks.
  • Cardholder requirements for checking. With a checking account only open to Amex cardholders, many might not qualify.

Frequently asked questions

Does American Express have a bank?

Yes, American Express has a banking division known as the American Express National Bank.

Is American Express Bank worth it?

It depends on what you need from a bank. American Express National Bank offers above-average APYs, low fees, and a few different bank accounts. However, it doesn’t have physical locations, and you must have an Amex credit card to be eligible for their checking account.

How safe is American Express Bank?

American Express National Bank is FDIC-insured, so deposit accounts are insured up to $250,000 per depositor, per ownership category. 



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