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CD Rates Rise Again at Northrop Grumman FCU (Easy Membership)

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Northrop Grumman Federal Credit Union
Northrop Grumman Federal Credit Union (NGFCU) once again bumped up their certificate rates. They have gone up quite a bit since my last NGFCU post. The best rate for a minimum deposit of $40K is 5.87% APY for a 60-month term (up from 5.76%). The one year certificate yield was bumped to 5.54% APY (up from 5.44%). Similar rates are also available for IRA's. Below is the list of APY's for both the $2.5K minimum and $40K minimum deposits. Note, rates have been changing weekly on Tuesdays.

CD Term APY APY
$2.5K min $40K min
6 month 5.22% 5.48%
12 month 5.27% 5.54%
24 month 5.37% 5.63%
30 month 5.39% 5.65%
36 month 5.41% 5.67%
48 month 5.51% 5.78%
60 month 5.61% 5.87%

The certificate details are available here. There is a 90 days of interest penalty for CDs with terms of 12 months or less. The penalty is 182 days of interest for CD terms over 12 months. There's one nice policy related to these penalties in that the penalty will only be applied to the money withdrawn if the CD balance after the withdrawal remains above the minimum balance. Otherwise, the penalty is on the entire balance and the CD will be closed.

Eligibility

In addition to employees of Northrop Grumman, the credit union's field of membership includes members of the Southern California Historical Aircraft Foundation.

Membership Application

The membership application can be done online (both membership into the aircraft foundation and into the credit union). The link to the online application is at the top left of the home page (Picture with the words "Take Ownership Join Online Now!"). I noticed the following in that application:
Members of the Southern California Historical Aircraft Foundation (SCHAF). If you are not currently a member of SCHAF and you wish to join through SCHAF membership, you will receive a one-year membership in SCHAF concurrent with your lifetime Credit Union membership.

I phoned their call center today (800-633-2848), and I was told that you could join both the SCHAF and credit union online, but you would be charged a total fee of $10. And you'll still need a minimum $5 deposit for the savings account. From the online documentation, it appears only $3 is required. If you've gone through the online application, please leave a comment about the fee that was charged.

A few other things the customer service rep mentioned about the membership application include: The online application allows initial funding by ACH transfer, credit card or by check. They don't do a hard credit pull, just ChexSystem (However, a reader has claimed a credit check via Equifax). At the end of the application, you should receive an account number if everything goes okay. You can use this plus the last four digits of your SSN to register for their online banking. After the online application, they'll mail you the welcome package that will include forms for you to sign and mail back along with a copy of your driver's license.

Opening a Certificate

Regarding purchasing a certificate, the CSR said that this cannot be done online, but it can be done by phone. The funds for the certificate should first be available in your NGFCU savings or checking account. The certificate will start on the day you open it by phone. They'll mail you the documentation and a form to sign and mail back to complete the certificate purchase process.

So if you have an online savings account (like at GMAC Bank or HSBC Direct), you should be able push funds into the savings account using the bank's online ACH transfer system. Once the funds are available in the savings account, you should then be able to call and open the certificate. I did something similar when I funded a CD at Navy FCU (see post).

Other Potential Fees

A full list of their fees is available here. Members who maintain a quarterly average daily balance or have a total balance in all shares at the end of each quarter of at least $100, or have an outstanding balance on a loan on the same account number during that quarter will be in good standing. Accounts that fall below this minimum requirement will be assessed an account maintenance fee of $6.00 per quarter.

General NGFCU information

NGFCU has branches in several cities in California and a few cities in Illinois, Maryland, Virginia, Louisiana and Florida.

The credit union is federally insured by the NCUA (Charter # 24292). It has $592.6 million in assets and 49,339 members.

Thanks to the reader who mentioned the rate updates in the comments.

  Tags: California, CD rates, IRA rates, Northrop Grumman Federal Credit Union

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Comments
5 Comments.
Comment #1 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I appreciate all of your efforts on tracking down the most current CD rates. However, how about including the credit ratings from
bankrate.com for each bank, credit union and online bank? I prefer banking with a safe and sound financial institution. After all, the difference between 5.50% and 5.00% APY monthly interest on an account of $100,000 is only about $40 depending on how the daily interest is compounded. I must mention that many banks fall into
the "I wouldn't bank there" rating for me. Of course, if you have the money to lose, that is another matter.

1
Comment #2 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
To the poster above:

As long as your total deposits in the bank are under the FDIC limits (100k for a single person), the rating is not very important. In the unlikely event that the bank/CU goes bust, you will not lose anything.

1
Comment #3 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Just be sure that you keep copies every month of the statement. I have had two CUs go under and get merged into a stronger CU while I was a member. In one case the records weren't perfectly transfered over.

1
Comment #4 by Bank Deal Lover (anonymous) posted on
Bank Deal Lover
Thanks for taking the time to make all this great information available and in one place!

1
Comment #5 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Bank rating not very important? FDIC insured, of course. However, a representative of US Bank said the "FDIC insurance is a joke." FDIC also has a website where you can look up "negative" and "watch list" financial institutions. I believe the credit worthiness of a bank/credit union to be extremely important. Just ask any mortgage holder from Countrywide, Fremont,
The Lending Tree, AmeriQuest, and 36 other subprime lenders who have sold off residential loans at a loss; asked for the money back from borrowers; borrowers who can't refinance and are losing their homes; and investors who can't get their money back.

1