How To Buy I Bonds in April 2024

The April I bond composite rate is 5.27% (US Treasury) which is 2.63% earned over 6 months.

Breaking News: The May 2024 I Bond inflation rate will be 2.96%!*

Read on to decide if you’d like to continue buying I Bonds, or if you’d rather cash them out.

Also consider if and when you may want to swap out your existing I Bonds for new I Bonds at a higher fixed rate.

April 2024 I Bond Fixed Rate is 1.30%!

If you liked having I Bonds and matching inflation then you might love having I Bonds that beat inflation over the next 30 years. To consider whether you’re better off swapping to the new 1.30% fixed rate I Bonds view this video:

How to Swap into the new 1.3% I Bond Fixed Rate

The April 2024 I Bond Inflation Rate is 3.94%

The current April 2024 I Bond inflation rate is 3.94%. Any I Bonds that renew during November 2023 – April 2024 will get that inflation rate added to the fixed rate.

The next I Bond inflation rate will be 2.96%. When your I Bond renews during May 2024 – October 2024 your new inflation rate will be 2.96%.

How is the I Bond composite rate determined?

The composite rate is a combination of the fixed rate and the semiannual inflation rate.

The fixed rate for I Bonds issued in April 2024 is 1.30%

The semi-annual inflation rate is 3.94%.

When you combine the two rates, and the additional inflation adjustment added to the fixed rate itself, you get the composite rate of 5.27%. Here is the exact math on the I Bond composite rate: [1.3% + (2 x 1.97%) + (1.3% x 1.97%)] = 5.27%.

How long do I get the current I Bond interest rate for?

This fixed rate stays with those I Bonds throughout the 30 years that they earn interest.

The current semiannual inflation rate of 3.94% will reset every 6 months following the purchase, or renewal, of your I bond.

How was the new I Bond inflation rate determined?

We are keeping a close eye on the latest CPI-U numbers, which you will see below determine the inflation rates for I bonds. The latest CPI numbers were released on April 10, 2024.

The April 2024 I Bond inflation rate is set at 3.94%!

The next May 2024 – October 2024 inflation rate will be 2.96%

CPI-U Data used to create I Bond Inflation Rate

September 2023 CPI-U:307.789
March 2024 CPI-U:312.332
May ’24 – October Inflation Rate: 2.96%
*New I Bond Inflation Rate = [(312.332/307.789)^(12/6)]-1 = 2.96%

What is the May 2024 I Bond rate prediction?

While there is no formula for the fixed interest rate, there is a published formula for the next inflation rate. As you view the CPI-U announcements each month you can project a trend.

Here’s the official projection for the May 2024 I Bond inflation rate, now that we have all 6 months of CPI data:

May I Bond Inflation Rate Projection

May 2024 I Bond Rate Projection

And now it seems the fixed rate is even more important than the inflation rate when determining if you should buy new I Bonds or not. Here is our latest thoughts on whether the fixed rate is going up or down in May.

May I Bond Fixed Rate Projection

Should I buy I Bonds Now or in May?

If you are buying I Bonds you need to consider whether its best to buy now, or after the rate changes. If you buy now then you know what at least the first six months interest would be, and you know what your fixed rate would be for up to the next 30 years.

Many I Bond experts suggest splitting up your I Bond purchases, just in case one time frame is better than the other. It’s like you would be dollar cost averaging your I Bond purchases!

The two factors of now vs. later are the inflation rate and the fixed rate. You now know the next inflation rate from the April 10 CPI release. You won’t know for sure the fixed rate until May 1 – and if you don’t like it then you can’t go back in time to buy the old fixed rate.

Here is a video walking through your decision on whether you might want to buy I Bonds now or later:

How does the current I Bond rate compare to historical rates?

When we compare the 6-month I Bond rates against 12-month Treasuries at the time we see that the 6-month I bond rate is an average of 1% lower.

At an initial rate of 5.27%, buying an I bond in April gets roughly 0.2% more compared to the 5.05% 12-month Treasury Bill rate (April 10, 2024).

Unlike 2021 and 2022, I Bond rates are more in line with other similar interest rate products.

One big difference between a Treasury Bill and the I Bond is that you can get out of Treasury Bills before 12 months AND you don’t have to give up the prior 3 months’ interest if you cash out in the first 5 years. You could be subject to changes in the price of the Treasury Bill if you don’t hold it to maturity, however.

What to should I consider when buying I Bonds in April 2024?

You are required to hold I bonds for 12 months, yet you generally only know the rate you’ll get over the next 6 months.

There are 2 rates you need to keep in mind:

  • The current rate for April 2024 purchases is 5.27%
  • Your renewal rate, which is based on the next inflation rate of 2.96%

If you buy an I Bond in April 2024 you will get 5.27% for 6 months, then 4.28% for the next 6 months for a combined 1 year rate of 4.83%.

The April 2024 12-month I Bond rate of 4.83% is similar to CDs and Treasury Bills that are roughly 5% interest over the same time frame. Also consider the 3-month recent interest penalty if you cash out in the first 5 years.

What if you’re considering cashing out your I bonds?

If you’re considering cashing out your I Bonds make sure you find the best time that gets you the most interest at my blog on When to Cash Out Your I Bonds.

Ultimate Guide to Selling I Bonds

What do I need to know about I Bonds?

An I bond is a U.S. Government Savings bond that carries a fixed interest rate, plus an additional inflation adjuster, so that you get an inflation-adjusted real rate of return. In a world of inflation worries and few inflation-adjusted investments, the I Bond is a great place to look for savers.

What are the details with an I Bond?

  • You have to hold them for 12 months minimum. You can’t cash out before then.
  • If you cash out between the end of year one and the end of year five, you lose your prior three months interest as a penalty.
  • You can only buy $10,000 per person, per year, and you have to do it at
  • I bonds are a great place for part of your emergency fund money

Bonus: Listen to our podcast with savings bond expert David Enna from on I bonds: US Series I Savings Bonds Simplified

Why are I Bonds so interesting right now?

I Bonds were somewhat unknown until they started offering eye-popping yields, based on the inflation rate, in May 2021 with the 3.54% rate.

Then, in November 2021 I bond rates doubled to 7.12% and then 9.62% in May 2022! The last super-high inflation rate was 6.48% in November 2022, which also came with a 0.4% fixed rate.

Now, for purchases in April 2024 the rate is 5.27%.

More importantly, the fixed rate is 1.30%. The fixed rate hasn’t been this high since October 2007.

I Bonds got famous for the high inflation rates in 2021 & 2022 – they may become popular again for new purchases based on the 16-year high fixed rates for November 2023 – April 2024.

How do I Bonds work?

When the US Government announces the 6-month inflation rate, you’ll be earning double that amount for half the year. Most interest rates are quoted in annual terms, but I bonds are quoted in semi-annual 6-month terms.

To calculate the annualized rate and to compare it to other rates just double the 6-month inflation rate, add in the fixed rate and then add the fixed rate inflation adjustment by multiplying the two together and adding that in.

That last factor is quite small, so feel free to ignore it to get a rough sense of the current rate. To see the math on each factor go to Treasury Direct I Bonds Interest Rates.

The current composite rate of 5.27% is only earned for the first 6 months of your I Bond. Your April 2024 I Bonds purchase will turn your $100 into $102.63 just 6 months later. This is a 5.27% annualized rate.

When do I get the next interest rate with I Bonds?

Six months after your purchase you’ll get the new six-month inflation rate, still get the same fixed rate from the start of your I Bond, and your money will grow by your new composite rate.

Your interest will be added every six months to the principal of your I Bond, and you’ll get the next 6 months interest applied to that new principal amount. This is called semiannual compounding.

You are required to hold I bonds for 12 months, and you only know what the next 6 months will bring for interest, but what’s the worst that could happen?

What’s the worst-case scenario when I buy an I Bond?

The worst-case scenario for purchases in April 2024 is you earn 5.27% interest for the 6 months after you buy your I bond, followed by 4.28%.

If you cash out exactly 12 months from now you would lose 3 month’s interest as a penalty and only clear 3.73% on your I Bond purchase.

This compares to close to 5% on 12 month Treasury Bills and CDs, however, 12 months from now you don’t know what those Treasury Bills and CDs would be renewing at.

You would know, with your I Bond, that if you purchase in April 2024 you will get at least 1.3% above inflation. That fixed rate, giving you a return above inflation, is the big value in I Bonds right now.

While your current 12-month guaranteed rate doesn’t compare to other 12-month investments, you are guaranteed, that every 6 months your renewal rates will be 1.30% above inflation for the 30 year life of your I Bond.

What are the interest rates on investments that are similar to I Bonds?

(based on and Federal Reserve Data from April 10, 2024)

Unlike most of 2021 and 2022, I Bond rates are now more in line with other similar time frame savings options.

What should I do if I’ve already maxed out I Bonds purchases for 2024?

Wondering what to do if you’ve already maxed out your I Bonds purchases for 2024? You may want to look into the gift box method for buying more than $10,000 in I Bonds.

If you don’t want any more I Bonds, consider short-term Treasury Bills!

For guidance on buying Treasury Bonds and Treasury Bills check out our blog: Get More Interest From Buying Treasury Bonds and Bills (T-Bills) Through Treasury Direct.

How to Get Strategic with Your I Bonds Purchase

There are no partial months in I Bond world! When you are buying I Bonds it serves you best to buy towards the end of the month, and to sell towards the beginning of the month.

David Enna, author of suggests being even more strategic, “You can buy an I Bond near the last day of the month and get credit for a full month’s interest, so you can effectively cut the one-year holding period to 11 months and a day, but realistically, you may want to extend the holding period to 14-15 months.”

If you lose the prior three months of interest by cashing in early and are unhappy with the new 6-month rate, you would want to hold on for the full higher interest period in months six to twelve and wait for another full three months of lower interest before cashing in after month fifteen.”

How to Take Action On Your Interest Rate Money

When saving your money over a 12-month time frame I Bonds are just one of many investments to consider. Zvi Bodie likes to call I bonds “America’s Best Kept Investing Secret.”

Consider your I bonds purchase not just for the short run, but also over the long run as part of a healthy emergency fund savings balance. To buy your I Bonds, go to

Bonus: Listen to the podcast with David Enna from for more in depth analysis on I bonds: US Series I Savings Bonds Simplified

Bonus: For guidance on buying Treasury Bonds and Treasury Bills check out our blog: Get More Interest From Buying Treasury Bonds and Bills (T-Bills) Through Treasury Direct.

More I Bonds Resources

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This material is provided for informational purposes only and is not solely intended to be relied upon as a forecast, research or investment advice, and is not a recommendation, offer or solicitation to buy or sell any securities or to adopt any investment strategy. The views and strategies described may not be suitable for all investors. 

They also do not include all fees or expenses that may be incurred by investing in specific products. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Investments will fluctuate and when redeemed may be worth more or less than when originally invested. You cannot invest directly in an index. The opinions expressed are subject to change as subsequent conditions vary. Advisory services offered through Thrivent Advisor Network, LLC. 


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