Your savings bond value can change over time. If you’d like to monitor savings bond value and want to know how to check your savings bond value, it’s relatively simple. Treasury Direct offers a savings bond calculator to check the value of savings bonds by denomination and type. If you’re planning to cash in savings bonds, do so with care.
If you purchased savings bonds in the 1980s to early 1990s, your savings bond’s maturity date was originally 20 years but provided the option of extending the maturity to 30 years. If you bought a savings bond in 1986, the bond’s original maturity date was 2006 with the option to hold the bond to 2016. In 2016, your bond would stop earning interest.
Let’s review some of the basics about how to evaluate savings bond value.
Savings Bond Value: Series EE Savings Bonds
Series EE bonds are purchased at a discount of face value. When the bond matures, the owner receives 100 percent of the face value. If the owner of Series EE bonds decides to extend the maturity date, Series EE bonds continue to earn interest under the extension period terms.
- If your Series EE savings bond was issued on May 2005 or later, interest on the savings bond is added each month. You receive a fixed interest rate and receive compounded interest on a semiannual basis.
- If your Series EE savings bond was issued between May 1997 and April 2005, you receive interest on the savings bond each month. You receive the benefit of semiannual compounding to your bond’s interest rate. The rate you receive is announced by Treasury Direct every May and November (for the six-month earnings period).
- If your Series EE bond was issued prior to May 1997, interest on the bond is added each six months. If you remember the month and year of your Series EE bond issuance, you can use Treasury Direct tables to calculate when interest is added to the savings bond.If you’re planning to cash in your savings bond, the decision to cash it in on the month in which interest is applied to the value is a good decision. For instance, if your Series EE savings bond was issued in February 1990, the interest date of your bond occurs each August 1/February 1. It’s best to cash in the bond after these dates. If you decide to cash in the bond before an interest payment is due, you’ll lose interest. In this example, if you cash in the bond in July and the bond is due to receive an interest payment in a few weeks, you won’t receive a portion of the interest. You’ll forfeit the interest payment.
- If you own very old Series E savings bonds issued between May 1941 and November 1965, these bonds no longer earn interest. Series E bonds no longer receive interest at 40 years from issuance. If you bought Series EE or E bonds issued in December 1965, these bonds stopped earning interest in December 1995.
Savings Bond Value and Series EE Semiannual Accrual Dates
According to Treasury Direct, you need to know the month and year of your Series EE savings bonds to calculate savings bond value:
- If you bought Series EE savings bonds issued prior to March 1993, your interest is paid in March and September.
- If you bought Series EE savings bonds from March 1995 to April 1997, your bonds’ interest earnings are received in March and September (for March issuance) and April and October for April issuance.
- If you bought Series EE savings bonds between March 1995 and April 1995, your bond interest is applied in March and September (for March issuance) and April and October for April issuance.
- Savings bonds issued in January or July during these years earn interest in January and July.
- Savings bonds issued in February or August during these years earn interest in February and August.
- Savings bonds issued in May or November during these years earn interest in May and November.
- Savings bonds issued in June or December during these years earn interest in June and December.
Series EE bonds issued from March 1993 to April 1995 received monthly interest payments during this period. Semiannual interest payments were applied to Series EE bonds after that time.
If you decide to redeem your savings bond, you can cash in the bond at a bank or by mail. You receive an IRS Form 1099-INT to report your interest income for tax purposes.
Saving Bond Value and the Savings Bond Calculator
If you own Series EE bonds, use the savings bond calculator on the Treasury Direct site to calculate your savings bond value: enter face value, issue date, and price at purchase. The savings bond calculator shows the interest earned, current value, interest rate, annual yield, next interest date, and final maturity date.
Once you input your savings bond(s) into Treasury Direct’s savings bond calculator, you can save them to check savings bond value in the future.
Savings Bond Value: Series I Bonds
If you’re wondering how to check your Series I savings bond value, it’s also a relatively simple process. Series I bonds are a lower-risk savings bond product. You’re protected against the impact of rising inflation during the holding period. You can’t buy or sell Series I bonds in a secondary bond market. After purchasing Series I savings bonds, your bonds are registered by individual, estate, trust, corporate, or partnership name.
Inflation indexing occurs semiannually on Series I savings bonds. The inflation adjustment is based on changes in the CPI-U index and the amount of adjustment, if any, is announced in May/November.
- Earnings in Series I savings bonds are the combined total of the fixed interest rate at the time of purchase and the variable semiannual inflation-adjustment amount.
- Series I bonds have a 30-year maturity.
- To determine your Series I savings bond value, use the Treasury Direct calculator as above. Interest on your bond accrues during the life of your bond. You receive interest upon redemption of bonds.
If you’re interested in cashing in Series I savings bonds, you may redeem the bonds any time after a 12 month initial holding period. You forfeit three months of interest at the time you redeem if you’ve owned the bonds for less than five years.