MADISON, Wis. (4/13/11)--When it comes to offering higher interest rates, credit union interest checking accounts regularly outdo other types of accounts--including those of banks--Mike Schenk, vice president of research and statistics at the Credit Union National Association, told Bankrate
Tuesday. The article was also picked up by Fox Business
and Yahoo! Finance
websites. “On average, there’s about a 15-basis-point advantage with credit unions,” Schenk said. He expects the advantage to increase when the economy improves, he added. “Credit unions are not for profit,” Schenk said. “They’re owned by their member depositors, so any profits go back to those members.” Interest checking accounts that earn more than the industry average typically have conditions attached, such as requirements for a minimum number of debit transactions per month or direct deposit, Schenk told Bankrate
listed five general ways consumers can qualify for credit union checking:
* Regularly use a debit card--Many credit unions require members to use their checking account debit card a minimum number of times per month; * Accept electronic statements--Credit unions may require their interest checking account holders to sign up for electronic monthly statements instead of receiving paper statements by snail mail; * Sign up for direct deposit--Another common requirement for high-interest checking depositors is to sign up for direct deposit on their accounts; * Deposit up to the maximum amount--Many credit unions put a cap on the amount of money in a checking account that can earn the highest yields on interest checking. This cap is usually about $25,000; * Don’t forget membership--All the interest-checking perks a credit union offers are available only to its members.
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