Fixed Deposit Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Getting Started

+ What is a fixed deposit (FD)?

A fixed deposit, also called a certificate of deposit or CD, is a savings product that offers fixed interest rates if you save for a fixed period, usually 1 to 5 years, with restrictions and penalties if you break the deposit before the maturity date.

+ Is a fixed deposit right for me?

If you are saving for a goal 1 to 5 years away and you don’t need access to your money before then a fixed deposit may be right for you. In fact, with fixed deposits the longer you save the more compound interest you earn.

+ How do I open a fixed deposit?

It’s pretty easy. You’ll need two forms of ID. You have to complete a simple form and make a minimum deposit of $10,000 to Development Finance after agreeing to the term of the deposit and the interest rate offered. DFL will then issue an official document to you certifying the terms of your deposit. Our finance department also reports the dollar value of your deposit to the Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago.

+ How is interest calculated and paid?

DFL offers interest rates between 3% and 3.75%, compounded annually, for terms of 1 to 5 years.

+ Is a fixed deposit safe?

Fixed deposits are considered one of the safest investments you can make for two reasons. First, unlike money market mutual funds, the interest rate on a fixed deposit is guaranteed up front. Second, any money you set aside in a fixed deposit up to TT$125,000 is fully covered by deposit insurance from the Deposit Insurance Corporation of Trinidad and Tobago.

+ Any penalties for breaking my FD?

Yes, your fixed deposit or certificate of deposit will be voided if you withdraw your money before the maturity date. When this happens a much lower interest rate, known as the ‘break rate’, will be applied to your original investment.

+ Are there fees for opening my FD?

No, there are no fees associated with opening or maintaining a fixed deposit.

+ What's the minimum to open a FD?

We start at $10,000 for both TT- and US-dollar accounts.

+ Are fixed deposits taxed?

No, fixed deposits are not taxed.

+ Any FDs longer than 5 years?

No, the maximum term is 5 years but you are free to renew your deposit for as long as you need to.

+ What will I earn on $150K after 5 years?

First, check out DFL’s interest rates on this page. Then, using the compound interest calculator here you will earn interest income of $30,315 after 5 years on a principal of $150,000.

+ Do you pay interest monthly?

No, interest is compounded and paid annually.

More answers

+ How can I calculate interest?

Easy, click here and use the compound interest calculator to see how your fixed deposit can grow over time.

+ What happens if DFL collapses?

Look at you being all negative…(just kidding). On a serious note, our latest financials suggest we’re well above the market in terms of capital-to-assets and capital adequacy ratios, financial-speak for we’re financially strong. But if something were to happen any money you have in a fixed deposit is fully covered by deposit insurance from the Deposit Insurance Corporation of Trinidad and Tobago up to TT$125,000.

+ How can I compare rates?

We made some calls and got the latest rates. You can see how we stack up by clicking here.

+ Are fixed deposits DIC insured?

Yes, but up to a point. Your money enjoys the protection of deposit insurance from the Deposit Insurance Corporation of Trinidad and Tobago up to TT$125,000.

+ Can I open a joint account?

Sure you can but both parties will need to complete and sign application forms and provide ID.

+ What agencies regulate fixed FDs?

DFL is regulated by both the Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago and the Trinidad and Tobago Securities & Exchange Commission. All fixed deposit certificates issued by DFL are filed with the Central Bank.

+ Can I add to my existing FD?

No, the total amount invested is fixed as are the term of the deposit and the interest rate it will earn.

+ Can I extend the fixed deposit term?

No, the term is fixed and can only be changed when your fixed deposit matures.

+ Can multiple accounts be insured?

Yes, you can have multiple single or joint fixed deposits covered by deposit insurance. Structured in the right way this can result in up to TT$500,000 being fully covered. Please contact us to discuss.

+ Where is DFL located?

We’re at 10 Cipriani Boulevard, Port-of-Spain.

+ Do you have an office in Tobago?

We just have one office at 10 Cipriani Boulevard, Port-of-Spain but you can do a lot online including opening a fixed deposit.

+ I need info on deposit insurance.

Please visit the DIC’s website here.