Florida-based GTE Financial has raised the rate on its 12-month Add-On IRA Special to 3.30% APY. The minimum opening deposit is $500, with no stated balance cap. There’s also a Jumbo version of the 12-month IRA Special, requiring a $100k minimum deposit, but it earns the same 3.30% APY. Although not stated on the landing page, the Add-On IRA Special requires new money to open.
Additional deposits of $100 or more are allowed throughout the term, but the add-on feature sounds better than it actually is:
All Promo Traditional IRA Certificates allow for add-on deposits after opening, but are limited by personal tax contribution limits of $5,500 if you are under age 50 and $6,500 if you are over age 50.
Monthly dividend are allowed without penalty and,
You can withdraw up to 10% of the principal plus dividends one time per year (20% of the current balance if over 59 1/2 years old) with no early withdrawal penalty on IRA certificates.
If the 12-month Add-On IRA Special is closed early, the Early Withdrawal Penalty would be "up to 90 days of earned dividends."
While the IRA Special can be funded through an ACH transfer or wire transfer, there is a $5k limit when funding online. Deposits of over $5k can be made at a GTE Financial location or a CO-OP Shared Branching location.
60-Month Jumbo Promo Share Certificate
In March, I wrote about GTE’s 60-month Add-On Share Certificate (3.04% APY) and 60-month Add-On Jumbo Share Certificate (3.30% APY). Those rates are still in effect.
A long-term add-on CD is a great hedge against falling rates, or as one DA reader called it, “cheap rate insurance.” Let’s say you open a 60-month Promotional Share Certificate with the minimum $500 deposit. If a recession occurs within the year and rates fall back to near zero, you can continue to make additional deposits and be guaranteed a 3.04% APY for another four years or so. Should rates continue to rise, the $500 investment won’t lose too much ground: the difference between a $500 5-year CD earning 5% and one earning 3% is only about $50 over five years.
Headquartered in Tampa, Florida, GTE Financial’s field of membership (FOM) provides a way for almost any U.S. citizen or resident alien to join.
Easy membership: Joining GTE Financial’s non-profit educational financial club, CU Savers, qualifies for credit union membership. According to the online application, “It's usually $10 to join CU Savers, but it's on us.”
Residency: Individuals who live, work, worship, or attend school in the following Tampa Zip Codes are eligible to join - 33602, 33603, 33604, 33605, 33606, 33607, 33609, 33610, 33619.
Employment: Employees of a Community Partner (SEG) qualify for membership. Individuals who have an immediate family member who works for a Community Partner are also membership eligible.
Relationship: Immediate family members (spouse, child, parent, sibling, stepparent, stepchild, grandparent, or grandchild) of a current Credit Union member is eligible for membership.
Joining GTE Financial and/or opening an Add-On IRA Special can be done online, or at any of 24 Florida branches located in Brandon, Clearwater, Crystal River, Hudson, Lakeland (2), Lutz, New Port Richey, Ocala, Plant City, Riverview, Sarasota, Seffner, Seminole, St. Petersburg (2), Tampa (7), and Temple Terrace. You can also call GTE Financial at 813.871.2690 or 888.871.2690 to apply for membership and an IRA Add-On Special.
When you join GTE Financial, you will need to fund your primary savings account.
$5 will be automatically transferred from your primary savings to a Member Owner Share.
Credit Union Overview
GTE Financial, has an overall health grade of "B+" at DepositAccounts.com, with a Texas Ratio of 9.72% (excellent), based on March 31, 2019 data. GTE Financial has an average capitalization level (8.56%), the result of holding $2.12 billion in assets with $181.68 million in equity. Please refer to our financial overview of GTE Financial (NCUA Charter # 196) for more details.
GTE Financial’s predecessor, Peninsula Telephone Employees Federal Credit Union (PTEFCU) was established in 1901. While GT&E purchased Peninsula Telephone Company in 1935, the PTEFCU name remained in place until 1958, when it was changed to GTE Federal Credit Union. In the 1990s, GTE Financial was the first Florida credit union (and the second in the country) to implement a successful debit card program. The Credit Union rebranded in 2012 and is currently Florida’s seventh largest credit union, with more than 235,000 members and assets in excess of $2.1 billion.
How the Add-On IRA Special Compares
When compared to 142 nationally available similar length-of-term IRAs, which require a similar minimum deposit, GTE Financial’s 12-month Add-On IRA Special APY currently ranks first.
To find the best IRA rates, either nationwide or state-specific, please refer to our IRA Rates Table page.
How the Jumbo Add-On Share Certificate Compares
If a comparison is made to nationally available similar length-of-term CD APYs, GTE Financial’s 60-month Jumbo Add-On Share Certificate Special APY currently shares the top spot with The Federal Savings Bank’s 5-year Promo CD, regardless of minimum deposit requirements. When I wrote about GTE Financial’s 60-month Share Certificate Special in March, the APY only rated sixth.
A comparison to standard CD APYs can’t accurately measure the intrinsic value of unlimited additional deposits, and at the moment, nationally available add-on CDs are rare. Mountain America Credit Union (MACU) used to offer competitive rates on its Growth Certificates (which are capped at $100k), but rates dropped several months ago.
The above rates are accurate as of 7/19/2019.
To find the best CD rates, either nationwide or state-specific, please refer to our CD Rates Table page.