AgFed Credit Union's 30-Month No Penalty CD Returns


UPDATE 7/10/2018: This offer is no longer available.

Deal Summary: 30-month No-Penalty Share Certificate, 2.40% APY, one penalty-free withdrawal during the term, $1k minimum deposit, new money.

Availability: Easy membership requirement.

AgFed Credit Union (AgFed) is again offering its 30-month No Penalty Share Certificate, with an improved 2.40% APY. This new APY is 55 bps higher than was offered in September. As before, this is a limited-time offer that requires new money. The minimum opening deposit is $1k, with no stated balance cap.

Note: When AgFed states “limited-time offer,” they mean it: the No Penalty Share Certificate was only available for about a week the last time it was offered.

The 30-month No Penalty Share Certificate offers a one-time withdrawal (partial or complete) without incurring a penalty. According to Truth-in-Savings disclosure:

One withdrawal may be made during the original term of the certificate with no penalty imposed. Subsequent early withdrawals may be subject to a penalty as outlined in the Early Withdrawal Penalties disclosure.

If subsequent withdrawals are made, the following applies:

If the certificate term is greater than 11 months but less than 60 months, the member shall forfeit an amount equal to the lesser of:
(A) All dividends for 180 days on the amount withdrawn, or
(B) All dividends on the amount withdrawn since the date of issuance or renewal.

In a September 2017 Forum post, DA reader, TheBombingRange, provided some important information about the No Penalty Share Certificate. Based on his comments, I confirmed the following with CSR this morning:

  • There is no limit on the number of No Penalty Share Certificates a member may open, although each opening requires a separate application.
  • Making a withdrawal requires either a written request (by snail mail or through AgFed’s online messaging system) or a phone call to the Credit Union. If you live in the DC area, you can submit a request at any of AgFed’s branch locations.
  • Accrued interest can be transferred to an AgFed checking or savings account, or sent to an external bank account.


Headquartered in Washington, D.C., AgFed Credit Union’s field of membership (FOM) is wide, allowing almost anyone in the U.S. with a valid Social Security number to join:

Easy Membership: Members of The Friends of the National Zoo or The Friends of the National Arboretum (one-time $20 donation) are eligible for membership. Joining either association and applying for AgFed membership can be done simultaneously, using the Credit Union’s online application.

Residency: Individuals who live, work, worship, or attend school in the District of Columbia also qualify for membership.

Employment/Affiliation: Any current or retired employee or member of more than 65 Select Employee Groups and organizations are eligible to join.

Family Relationship: Any person related by blood, adoption, or marriage to a member (except relatives of members who have been expelled from the Credit Union) are membership eligible.

Joining AgFed and opening a No Penalty Share Certificate can be done online, by phone (800.368.3552), or at any of six full-service branches located in Washington, D.C. (3), Alexandria (VA), Riverdale and Beltsville (MD).

Credit Union Overview

AgFed Credit Union has an overall health grade of "A" at, with a Texas Ratio of 2.62% (excellent) based on March 31, 2018 data. In the past year, AgFed has increased its total non-brokered deposits by $36.16 million, an excellent annual growth rate of 14.25%. Please refer to our financial overview of AgFed Credit Union (NCUA Charter # 16400) for more details.

Originally established as the Agriculture Federal Credit Union in 1934 by United States Department of Agriculture, AgFed Credit Union currently has more than 26,000 members and assets in excess of $325 million. In October 2017, AgFed acquired the Maryland-based NARC Federal Credit Union.

How the No Penalty Share Certificate Compares

It’s obvious that the 2.40% APY isn’t anything to get excited about: the APY is 61 bps lower than the current top nationally available 30-month term rate and 60 bps lower than the current top nationally available 36-month term rate. The no-penalty feature, which makes it more like a Savings or Money Market account, is what makes the No Penalty Share Certificate competitive. When compared to nationally available liquid accounts with no balance limitations, the 2.40% APY holds up very well.

Interest RateAccount NameCredit Union/Bank
2.40% APY30-Month No Penalty Share Certificate ($1k min)AgFed Credit Union
2.01% APYeMoney Market (no min)Virtual Bank
1.90% APYAgility Savings (no min)CIBC USA

No Penalty CDs are a rarity. Only two internet banks (Ally and CIT Bank) currently offer a No Penalty CD and those have term lengths of only 11 months. With a no-penalty feature, a longer term is advantageous: if rates should drop, you can keep the CD open, while still having the flexibility to make a withdrawal at any time.

Interest RateCD Length of TermCredit Union/Bank
2.40% APY30-Month No Penalty Share Certificate ($1k min)AgFed Credit Union
1.85% APYNo-Penalty 11-Month CD ($1k min)CIT Bank
1.80% APYNo-Penalty 11-Month CD ($25k min)Ally Bank

The above rates are accurate as of 6/28/2017.

Related Pages: Washington CD rates, 5-year CD rates, nationwide deals

TheBombingRange   |     |   Comment #1
Thanks for the shoutout Ken! As much legwork as I put into looking at this deal back in September, I'm not sure if I'm going to take it. Just opened up the 2.26% Money Market at Northern Bank Direct, and right now it seems like total liquidity is my friend, which this AgFed CD can't provide as easily. For 14 bp, I'm just not sure it's worth the $20 fee for the membership and my time.
decades   |     |   Comment #2
I received an email from them on this . It says receive dividends quarterly . Does this mean if I closed the cd midway in a quarter I would lose out on the interest up to that point ?
Hoody   |     |   Comment #3
@2 This was something I had questions about myself sinc I only had CD's that deposited the interest on a monthly basis back into my MM.

The way I understood the quarterly thing, was yes, they only deposit the accumulated interest every quarter, but the interest builds up for that quarter even though you don't see it.

So if you close the CD prior to a full quarter, like say 60 days, you'd have that 60 days interest coming.
SYC   |     |   Comment #4
Recently closed out my no-penalty 1.85% IRA CD with AgFed mid-month. Received full interest until the date of withdrawal.  Not only that, AgFed sent out the direct transfer check on the next day.
pwj7050   |     |   Comment #5
You won’t lose the accrued interest. I just closed my no penalty CD’s that I opened last September and they paid the accrued interest. However, in order to open the new no penalty CD’s I had to move the money out of AGFED by pulling the money out through another account at another bank and then have the money sent back into Agfed from that other bank. A pain in the **** to say the least.
SYC   |     |   Comment #13
pwj7050, Per my secured message to AgFed after the close yesterday, CSR just closed my 1.85% no-penalty CD and immediately opened the current no-penalty CD with 2.4%. All done without a hassle. IMO, their customer service and response time to requests are awesome.
Anonymous32   |     |   Comment #6
Does anyone know if they require.a credit check? And if they do, with which agency? Hard or soft inquiry?
Anon   |     |   Comment #7
It's very easy to close an AgFed no-penalty CD. Just a call to customer service and the principal and accrued interest can be put in your share savings account the same day. No hassle.

I'm keeping my 2.26% APY Northern Bank Direct account, but moving money from my 1.90% APY PurePoint account and my 2.05% NorthPointe Bank account over to Agfed.
Mak   |     |   Comment #9
I could not see 2.26% APY at Northern Bank Direct but it is rather 1`.51%?
TheBombingRange   |     |   Comment #10
It was a promo rate last week, guaranteed for 1 year. For new customers it's now 1.51% with no rate guarantee.
CarlBig   |     |   Comment #8
If i open a new account and deposit what is the Max one time withdraw i can do with not penalty
Anon   |     |   Comment #11
You can withdraw the entire principal plus accrued interest and close the CD. That is the maximum withdrawal without penalty.
interested   |     |   Comment #12
It seems you have to open the special no penalty certificate the old fashion way and call or visit a branch. Didn't see an option online to add the certificate to an existing membership acct.
matthewgast   |     |   Comment #15
It isn't available on-line, but my experience is that the call to open is only a couple of minutes long. (I assume they don't want to update the web system for a deal that's around for ~1 week.) The CSR I talked with this morning enforced the new money restriction, and unlike @SYC didn't let me convert existing CDs to the new rate.
The Mighty Sven
The Mighty Sven   |     |   Comment #14
Working from memory here, so please do not flame me too severely if I'm off base. I believe there is a short period of time during which you may not close your new CD. Five days sticks in my mind, but am uncertain. In any event, it is not long.

Only mentioning this because things seem to be moving so fast for us rate chasers. Feels as if there is a new, higher, rate for liquid money every few days. If I'm right regarding the short term account freeze I would not expect this to change any minds about opening such a great account. Just wanted you to be aware of the possibility. Only God knows how high new rates for liquid money might climb after July first.
111   |     |   Comment #16
As I recall, it's actually based on a Federal requirement and not that of a particular financial institution. And it is 7 calendar days (which of course would equal 5 business days, at least most of the time.) Since it is a Federal requirement, I think it my apply to all CDs, No-Penalty or not.

But - my memory may be faulty as well.
NewAccountQuestion   |     |   Comment #17
I am going through the online application process of opening a new CD account (and new account with AgFed). However, when it comes time to fund the CD, I do not see the option for the 30 month 2.4% CD. Any suggestions on what I need to do. Thanks.
TheBombingRange   |     |   Comment #18
This promo isn't available to open online, call them to start the process.
NewAccountQuestion   |     |   Comment #20
Thanks. Looks like I'll have to restart the process.
decades   |     |   Comment #19
fastest way ... go to their website.....dont log in ... click join .. open 2nd share acct or any of the other choices ..instantly fund using bank and touting number from where you have the money now ... call them and they will convert it to the promo cd
NewAccountQuestion   |     |   Comment #21
Thanks. I started the application with the CD and I am being "forced" to fund a CD account. I'll just call them up and figure out the process. Appreciate your suggestion!
Interested   |     |   Comment #22
Didn't see the no-penalty certificate promo on AgFCU website this morning.
111   |     |   Comment #23
I don't see it either. Ken's writeup did say, referring to AgFed's similar 1.85% offer last fall - "Note: When AgFed states “limited-time offer,” they mean it: the No Penalty Share Certificate was only available for about a week the last time it was offered."

If in fact it did end yesterday (Thursday 7/5/18), that's a Thursday-to-Thursday timeframe for this offer, BUT with a holiday stuck in there. So, less than 1 week - 4 business days.

I finalized mine 7/9/18. Perhaps Agfed didn't need as much funding this time?
111   |     |   Comment #24
Duh!! Meant to say, finalized 7/2/18.
The Mighty Sven
The Mighty Sven   |     |   Comment #25
I opened one of these CDs before 9:00 am this morning (7/6) using funds which had arrived at AgFed during the overnight via ACH. However, am not now seeing the deal any longer on their rate page. This deal appears dead. RIP It was a great deal. I thought the deal would last longer and I was so wrong.
AgFed Credit Union 30-Month No Penalty CD Returns

UPDATE 9/20/17: The 30-Month No Penalty CD has ended and is no longer available effective 9/20/17.

Deal Summary: No-Penalty 30-month Certificate, 1.85% APY, one penalty-free withdrawal during the term, $1k minimum deposit, new money.

Availability: Easy membership requirement.

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