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What’s a Cash Market Account?


An illustrated chart compares money market accounts versus five alternative accounts.

To save cash, there are numerous account sorts to select from, every with its benefits and disadvantages. 

Right here’s a more in-depth take a look at how cash market accounts evaluate to different widespread sorts of financial savings accounts, like conventional financial savings and checking accounts, certificates of deposit (CDs), and cash market funds. 

Cash market account vs. saving accounts

Cash market accounts and conventional financial savings accounts are widespread sorts of deposit accounts banks and credit score unions provide. One of many key variations between them comes right down to rates of interest. 

MMAs typically provide barely increased rates of interest than conventional financial savings accounts (though this varies relying on the present state of the financial system since MMA rates of interest rise and fall with inflation). Nevertheless, additionally they are inclined to require increased a minimal steadiness. In distinction, conventional financial savings accounts typically have decrease minimal steadiness necessities, if any. 

Some MMAs can also cost month-to-month charges in case your steadiness falls beneath the minimal requirement. If you happen to’re hoping to earn extra in curiosity with out paying the upper minimal steadiness of an MMA, you may take into account a high-yield financial savings account as a substitute. HYSA’s are one other nice method to earn way more in curiosity than conventional financial savings accounts for a a lot decrease minimal steadiness.

Cash market account vs. checking accounts

Whereas most cash market accounts include check-writing privileges (and generally even a debit card) like an everyday checking account, they aren’t designed so that you can use for day-to-day spending. MMAs usually limit the variety of transactions you may make per 30 days, whereas checking accounts typically provide limitless transactions. 

Whereas the federal mandate limiting MMA withdrawals to 6 per 30 days was lifted in 2020, many banks nonetheless impose this restrict. 1 That is the place the principle distinction between MMAs and checking accounts lies. Whereas checking accounts are designed for on a regular basis spending, MMAs goal to be financial savings accounts with restricted entry to your funds.

Cash market account vs. CDs

A certificates of deposit (CD) is a financial savings account that pays a hard and fast rate of interest over a set time period, with a penalty for withdrawing the funds earlier than the time period ends.

CDs are long-term financial savings autos with set phrases and penalties for early withdrawals. This implies cash in a CD is much less liquid (that’s, much less available) than cash in an MMA.

CDs additionally usually require a better minimal deposit than MMAs, however in alternate for that increased deposit, you could possibly earn a better rate of interest. CDs additionally provide a hard and fast charge of return for the time period, whereas MMAs typically have variable charges that may change over time. 

Chime tip: If you happen to’re on the lookout for a long-term financial savings possibility and don’t want quick entry to your funds, a CD could also be a wise selection. Nevertheless, take into account an MMA if you need a extra versatile financial savings possibility with a aggressive rate of interest.

Cash market account vs. cash market mutual funds

Cash market accounts and cash market mutual funds (MMFs) are two totally different monetary merchandise that always get confused with one another. Not like MMAs, cash market funds aren’t provided at banks and credit score unions. As a substitute, they’re provided by mutual fund firms and funding brokerage corporations. 

Whereas an MMA is a federally insured interest-bearing account, cash market funds are mutual funds that spend money on short-term debt securities. Not like MMAs, they aren’t FDIC-insured and will not be deposit accounts however funding autos that let you earn a return in your money.

MMFs are barely higher-risk investments as a result of they aren’t FDIC-insured and topic to fluctuations available in the market. Whereas nonetheless thought-about a comparatively secure funding, they carry some danger since returns aren’t assured.



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