This may be the last week you can get a 5.00% APY 36-month CD at Pentagon Federal Credit Union. According to an email I received from PenFed, money must be on deposit by 10/31/2008 to lock in this rate. In addition to the 3-year term, the other certificates terms with a 5% APY include 4, 5 and 7 years. The minimum deposit is $1,000, and these are also available in an IRA.
For more details about PenFed's CDs and joining PenFed, please refer to this PenFed review post. PenFed makes it easy for anyone to join and open accounts online. If you don't qualify based on military, employer or family, you can become eligible by joining the National Military Family Association (NMFA). Please refer to How to Join Overview Page for details. Joining NMFA and Penfed can be done at the same time all online. The yearly membership for NMFA is $20, but your membership in the association does not need to be maintained to continue as a Penfed member
In addition to high CD rates, PenFed has several other competitive banking products including a cash back Visa credit card with 5% cash back for gas purchases and auto loans with very low rates (see post).
PenFed's financial rating for soundness at Bankrate.com has improved since last year. It's now 4 stars (sound) based on 6/30/08 data (up from 3 stars last year). PenFed's rating at BauerFinancial remains at 5 stars (superior) based on 6/30/08 data.
PenFed is one of the largest credit unions in the US with $12.2 billion in assets and 825,527 members. It's federally insured by the NCUA (Charter # 227).
Other CD Specials
I first posted on this 5% CD special on October 1st. Remember to check my weekly CD rate summary for all of the recent CD rates. I also include some of the best national and local deals in my Deals & News of the Day post (link at the top of the front page).