As I was preparing yesterday’s Keesler Federal Credit Union (KFCU) High Interest Money Market Account Plus blog post, I realized I hadn’t written about KFCU’s Jumbo CDs ($100k minimum) in quite some time. While the Jumbo CDs with terms between 1- and 5-year offer competitive rates that have held for the past six months, the two that stand out to my eye are the 3-year Bump Rate and the 5-year. Non-Jumbo CDs are also offered, with rates a uniform 10 bps lower and requiring a $1k minimum opening deposit.
The rate increase option for the 3-year Bump Rate CD is described in Truth-in-Savings Disclosure as follows:
At any time during the term of the certificate you may, at your discretion, “bump” or increase the rate paid on your certificate to the then current rate being paid on three-year variable rate certificates. This new rate will remain in effect for the remaining term of your certificate. This feature is available only once per three-year term.
The Jumbo and non-Jumbo CDs are also available as Jumbo and non-Jumbo IRA CDs (Traditional, Roth), earning the same APYs with the same deposit requirements.
As stated in the Truth-in-Savings Disclosure, the Early Withdrawal Penalty reads as follows:
A. If the withdrawal does not reduce the certificate funds below the required minimum balance for this type of certificate, the member shall forfeit at the certificate rate an amount equal to the lesser of:
1. All dividends for 90 days from the amount withdrawn for certificates with a term of 1 year or less; or all dividends for 180 days on the amount withdrawn for certificates greater than 1 year; or
2. All dividends on the amount withdrawn since date of issuance or renewal.
B. If the amount withdrawn reduces the certificate funds below the required minimum balance for this type of certificate, the entire certificate will be canceled and the member shall forfeit at the certificate rate* an amount equal to the lesser of:
1. All dividends for 90 days on the entire amount of the certificate if the certificate is for a term of 1 year or less; or all dividends for 180 days on the entire amount of the certificate if the certificate is for a term of 1 year or more; or
2. All dividends on the entire certificate since the date of issuance or renewal.
* The term “certificate rate” also includes the “bump rate”, if applicable, when calculating the early withdrawal penalty.
Funding and Accessing Maturing Funds
Funds must be available in your KFCU account when a CD is opened. Depositing funds into the account can be completed through ACH transfer, wire transfer, or by mailing a check. KFCU also participates in the CO-OP Shared Branch network.
In a Live Chat, CSR stated,
Once the account is approved and open and we provide you with your account and routing number, you will have the option of transferring from another bank, mailing a check or going to one of our shared branches, which are credit unions that can service our Keesler members and accept deposits.
When a CD matures, there is a 10-day grace period before it automatically renews. Maturing funds can be distributed by ACH, wire ($20 fee), cashier’s check, or deposited into your KFCU savings account.
Unlimited beneficiaries, receiving equal shares, can be named. While Social Security numbers are not required, KFCU would “like to have as much information as you can provide” about any beneficiary.
Headquartered in Biloxi, Mississippi, Keesler Federal Credit Union’s field of membership (FOM) has changed four times in the past 2 ½ years. The easy membership requirement (EMR) through the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) is now available only to residents of Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi.
In August 2018, KFCU added a 7-month Share Certificate Special earning 5.00% APY. With so many out-of-area inquiries about that great rate, KFCU decided to expand its FOM, making almost all U.S. citizens and resident aliens eligible for membership. Sometime during late spring 2019, KCU placed geographic limitations on the ACS CAN option, effectively wiping out the nationwide availability. When I wrote about KFCU’s Step Certificates in January 2020, the FOM once again included all U.S. citizens or resident aliens, regardless of residency status. By early May 2020, the limited EMR was in effect yet again and has remained unchanged.
Limited Easy Membership – The fourth option on the Eligibility page of KFCU’s online membership application is “I am a member of the following association.” The first association listed is ACS CAN, a “nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate of the American Cancer Society.”
It’s not clear on the online application if it’s necessary to join ASC CAN first and then apply to KFCU, or if it’s possible to join both simultaneously. In a Live Chat, CSR stated,
You can go ahead and select the ACSCAN and submit your application. Once we
receive it, we will send you the [ACSCAN] form that will need to be filled out for that.
Residency – Individuals who live, work, worship, or attend school in the Mississippi counties of Forrest, Hancock, Harrison, or Pearl River, or select census tracts in the counties of Hinds or Jackson are eligible to join. Also qualifying for membership are those who live, work, worship, or attend school in select census tracts in St. Tammany or Orleans Parishes, Louisiana, or Mobile County, Alabama.
Employment – Employee and/or members of more than 500 SEGs are eligible for membership.
Military Relationship – Active or retired military who can use the services at Keesler Air Force Base or at Royal Air Force Bases in the UK qualify for membership.
Family Relationship – Immediate family members (spouse, parent, grandparent, sibling, child, grandchild, significant other) of a current KFCU member are welcome to apply.
The “Join the Family” page also states,
If you’re not sure you’re eligible, contact us and we’ll help you with additional options for qualifying for membership.
Joining Keesler Federal Credit Union can be done online, or at any of the 26 Mississippi, six Louisiana, or two Alabama branch locations.
All branches are open regular business hours. We strongly encourage members who must visit a branch for all non-teller line or drive-thru business to use our Appointment Scheduling System. This will reserve your spot and reduce wait times.
As stated on the HIMMA landing page, opening an HIMMA can be done at any of the above-mentioned branch locations or by phone (888-533-7537).
A minimum deposit of $5.00 in a Primary Share account is required to establish membership.
In addition to participating in the CO-OP Shared Branch network, KFCU also offers its members access to the CO-OP ATM network.
Credit Union Overview
Keesler Federal Credit Union has an overall health grade of "A+" at DepositAccounts.com, with a Texas Ratio of 1.20% (excellent) based on September 30, 2020 data. In the past year, KFCU has increased its total non-brokered deposits by $621.28 million, an excellent annual growth rate of 27.73%. Please refer to our financial overview of Keesler Federal Credit Union (NCUA Charter # 5561) for more details.
Chartered in 1947, Keesler Federal Credit Union was established by ten civil services employees at Keesler Field, the predecessor of Keesler AFB. At the end of the first year of operations, KFCU had approximately 270 members and $7k in assets. In its 74th year of operation, KFCU is the largest credit union in Mississippi, with nearly 265,000 members and assets in excess of $3.5 billion.
How the CDs Compare
Given the multi-state FOM, a comparison to nationally available CDs is appropriate. When compared to the similar length-of-term CDs tracked by DepositAccounts.com that are available nationwide, Keesler Federal Credit Union’s 5-year Jumbo CD APY currently ranks first, regardless of minimum deposit requirements.
When compared to the similar length-of-term CDs tracked by DepositAccounts.com that are available nationwide, Keesler Federal Credit Union’s 3-year Bump Rate Jumbo CD APY currently ranks first, regardless of minimum deposit requirements.
The above information and rates are accurate as of 2/20/2021.
To look for the best CD rates, both nationwide and state specific, please refer to our CD Rates Table page.