The spread between rates on fixed annuities and one-year certificates of deposit sold by banks narrowed to 84 basis points in mid-February, according to a consultant who tracks the data.

The decline, from a 94-basis-point spread in mid-January, reflects growing competition for savings dollars, said Kenneth Kehrer, principal of Kenneth Kehrer Associates, Princeton, N.J. He noted that a year ago, the spread was closer to 200 basis points. (A basis point is one one-hundredth of a percent.)

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