MERCO Credit Union (MERCO) recently unveiled its Flex-Term Share Certificates that “offer greater flexibility and accessibility because you can choose your own Certificate term” with a predetermined maturity date. The 5.00% APY applies to any term chosen, from 6 months to 60 months. With today's inverted yield curve, 5% on short-terms CDs is nothing special, while 5% on long-term CDs is noteworthy.
|5.00%||$500||-||MERCO Credit Union||6 Month - 5 Year Flex-Term Share Certificate|
|5.00%||$1k||-||MERCO Credit Union||6 Month - 5 Year Flex-Term IRA (Traditional, Roth, CESA)|
The Flex-Term Share Certificates are also available as IRA Flex-Term Share Certificates (Traditional, Roth, CESA) earning the same 5.00% APY but requiring a $1k minimum opening deposit.
As stated on the landing page,
- Choose any term from 6 months to 60 months
- Lock in a rate of 5.00% APY for the full term
- Deposit as little as $500 for regular Certificate
- Deposit as little as $1,000 for IRA Certificate
- Does NOT have to be NEW money
Thanks to DA reader, Carpline, for the recent Forum post about the Flex-Term Share Certificates
Headquartered in Merced, California, MERCO Credit Union’s field of membership (FOM) is community-based, with U.S. citizens and resident aliens (with a valid Social Security number) who live, work, worship, or attend school in the Central California counties of Madera, Mariposa, Merced, or Stanislaus eligible for membership.
Family members of an existing MERCO member who live in California also qualify for membership.
Joining MERCO and/or opening a Flex-Term Share Certificate can be done at any of three full-service California branches in Atwater, Mariposa, and Merced (2). While MERCO does have an online banking platform, it is dedicated to account management and bill pay services; there is no online application for either new memberships or account opening.
A one-time $5 membership fee and a minimum $5 deposit in a savings account establishes a MERCO membership.
Funding and Other Particulars
The following information is from a conversation with CSR.
- Funding – ACH, wire ($10 fee), check, or internal transfer.
- Ownership – Individual, joint, or trust.
- Early Withdrawal Penalty – 180 days of interest on amount withdrawn for 5-year term; partial withdrawals are permitted, but the principal is not protected.
- CO-OP Shared Branch Participant – No.
- Dividends – Compounded/credited monthly and can be automatically transferred to a MERCO Regular Savings account.
- Maturing Funds – Cashier’s check to address on file or internal transfer to a MERCO Regular Savings account.
- Beneficiaries – Unlimited and percentages can be assigned; Social Security numbers are not required.
- Grace Period – 10 calendar days before automatic renewal.
- Credit Check – ChexSystems.
Credit Union Overview
MERCO Credit Union currently has an overall health grade of "B+" at DepositAccounts.com, with a Texas Ratio of 3.25% (excellent) based on June 30, 2023 data. In the past year, MERCO’s total non-brokered deposits decreased by $-10.04 million, a below average annual growth rate of -6.41%. Please refer to our financial overview of MERCO Credit Union (NCUA Charter # 64766) for more details.
Founded in 1954, MERCO Credit Union’s original FOM was exclusive to the residents of Merced County, California. MERCO describes itself as a “local, non-profit, member-owned Community Development Financial Institution.” According to a September 2022 CU Times article, MERCO received a $3.5 million grant as part of secondary capital awards from the U.S. Treasury Department.
NCUA Chair Todd Harper said the Emergency Capital Investment Program (ECIP) program is providing participating Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs) and Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) with “patient, long-term capital that will become a game changer to advance greater financial inclusion and economic opportunity.”
“The pandemic-induced recession hit communities of color and the poorest households the hardest. High inflation rates have also created new economic challenges for these families,” Harper said.
How the 5-Year Flex-Term Share Certificate Compares
When compared to similar length-of-term CDs tracked by DepositAccounts.com that are available within the FOM and have minimum deposit requirements of $10k or less, one bank and two credit unions have higher rates than currently offered on the MERCO Credit Union 5-Year Flex-Term Share Certificate. The following table compare the 5-Year Flex-Term Share Certificate to the two highest-rate CDs from other credit unions and the two highest-rate CDs from banks.
|APY||CD Term (Early Withdrawal Penalty)||Credit Union/Bank|
|5.25%||60-Month CD (EWP=50% of dividends the would have been earned)||Workers Credit Union|
|5.25%||60-Month Online CD (EWP=180 days)||BMO Alto|
|5.19%||5-Year Regular Certificate (EWP=365 days)||Advancial|
|5.00%||5-Year Flex-Term Share Certificate (EWP=180 days)||MERCO Credit Union|
|4.90%||60-Month MYSB Direct Online CD (EWP=all earned interest)||M.Y. Safra Bank|
The above information and rates are accurate as of 11/10/2023.
To look for the best CD rates, both nationwide and state specific, please refer to our CD Rates Table page.