A year ago, I wrote about the 1-2 year Jumbo Investment Certificate and Investment Certificate offered by Tennessee-based Eastman Credit Union (ECU). At that time, the 1.10% APY and 1.05% APY were rate leaders in Tennessee and Virginia. While the rates have each been lowered by 40 bps in the past year, the Jumbo Investment Certificate ($100k minimum) and Investment Certificate ($1k minimum) still offer competitive rates.
The Certificate and Jumbo Certificate are also offered as IRA Investment Certificates (Traditional, Roth, and CESA), earning the same APYs and with the same deposit requirements.
According to ECU’s Truth-in-Savings disclosure, the Early Withdrawal Penalty read as follows:
For Investment Certificates with terms of 180 days to 729 days,
the penalty will equal 90 days’ dividends on the amount withdrawn.
The fine print on the Investment Certificate Rates page states,
Dividends are paid monthly on all accounts. Dividends earned on all accounts may be transferred to another account at ECU. You may elect to receive a check only for dividends earned on investment certificates.
Headquartered in Kingsport, Tennessee, Eastman Credit Union’s field of membership is primarily residency-based in three different states – Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia.
Residency: Individuals who live, work, worship, attend school, or operate a business in the Tennessee counties of Carter,* Elizabethton, Greene, Hancock, Hawkins, Sevier, Sullivan, or Washington; the Virginia counties of Dickenson, Lee, Norton, Russell,* Scott, Washington, or Wise*; or the Texas counties of Gregg or Harrison, are eligible to join.
*ECU’s FOM includes only portions of Wise and Russell Counties (VA) and Carter County (TN).
SEGs: Individuals who are employed by ECU’s 48 Sponsor Companies and 32 Approved Contractors (including Eastman Chemical Company) qualify for membership.
Employment: Individuals who work regularly in the healthcare industry in Carter, Hamblen, Johnson or Unicoi Counties in Tennessee; or Buchanan, Russell, Smyth, Tazewell, or Wise Counties in Virginia, are also eligible for membership.
Relationship: Family members of ECU membership-eligible individuals also qualify for membership. In other words, if your mother is eligible to join, you can apply for membership, whether your mother is an ECU member or not.
Joining Eastman Credit Union and/or opening an Investment Certificate can be done online, or at any of the 21 Tennessee branches located in Blountville, Bristol, Gray, Greenville (2), Johnson City (4), Jonesborough, Kingsport (8), Mount Carmel, Piney Flats, and Rogersville. There are also two branches in Longview, Texas, and five branches in southwest Virginia – Abingdon (2), Bristol, Duffield, and Gate City. All branch locations have re-opened to walk-in traffic.
To maintain proper social distancing, the number of members allowed inside our branches at any given time will be limited and monitored at the front entrance. You may be asked to wait outside until someone exits the building. Please note, our public restrooms have been temporarily closed.
Opening a Primary Share Account with a $5 minimum balance establishes a new ECU membership.
Credit Union Overview
Eastman Credit Union has an overall health grade of "A+" at DepositAccounts.com, with a Texas Ratio of 0.48% (excellent) based on March 31, 2021 data. In the past year, ECU has increased its total non-brokered deposits by $1.17 billion, an excellent annual growth rate of 25.32%. Please refer to our financial overview of Eastman Credit Union (NCUA Charter # 68095) for more details.
Eastman Credit Union was founded in 1934 by employees of the Eastman Chemical Company, which has been based in Kingsport (TN) since 1920. With more than 267,000 members and assets in excess of $6.6 billion, ECU is currently the largest credit union in Tennessee and the 40th largest credit union in the country. In January, ECU awarded $15 million to its members through its Extraordinary Dividends program. In the past 23 years, ECU has paid its members more than $147 million in year-end bonuses.
How the Investment Certificates Compare
When compared to the 1-year CDs tracked by DepositAccounts.com that are available residents in the Tennessee-Virginia Tri-Cities area, Eastman Credit Union’s 1-2 Year Jumbo Investment Certificate and 1-2 Year Invest Certificate APYs currently rank third and fourth respectively, regardless of minimum deposit requirements.
The above information rates are accurate as of 6/3/2021.
To look for the best CD rates, both nationwide and state specific, please refer to our CD Rates Table.