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Greetings, Thoughtleader, and welcome. You asked:

Can someone explain how money market accounts work?
Advertised interest rates can range from 2% to 5%.
Must be more to it than the amount deposited.

Money market funds invest in short-term paper that matures in less than a year, and usually in 90 days or less. Of the 1364 money market funds in existence as of 8/31, the greatest year to date return was 4.97%, he lowest 0.13%, and the median return 2.71%. The ones with a higher return obtain it in a couple of ways, and that's by investing in riskier instruments (i.e., higher potential for default) and/or by temporarily waiving all or part of the usual management fee to pump up the short-term return.

That may not be a complete explanation of how these beasts work, but it's the best I can do.

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