Mountain America Credit Union Ups 5-Year Term Deposit


Deal Summary: 5-year Term Deposit, 3.00% APY, $500 minimum deposit. 5-year Term Deposit Plus, 3.00% APY, $5 min/$100k max, minimum $10 automatic monthly deposit.

Availability: Easy membership requirement

DA reader, jamesstewart, posted some important news in the Forum today: Utah-based Mountain America Credit Union (MACU) is the latest financial institution to join the “3 For 5 Club,” by raising the rate on its 5-year Term Deposit to 3.00% APY. The minimum deposit is $500, with no stated balance cap.

2.90%$500-Mountain America Credit Union5 Year Term Deposit
Rates as of May 22, 2018.

The Term Deposit is also available as an IRA, earning the same APY with the same funding requirements.

MACU's 5-year Term Deposit has been at or near the top of the 5-year Nationally Available CDs category in DA's CD Rates Summary for more than two years. In August, MACU expanded their product line to include Term Deposit Plus accounts (TDP), which are essentially an add-on version of their Term Deposit accounts.

The TDPs earn the same APYs as the Term Deposits, but "make saving for long-term goals easy." The TDP promo page outlines how these new accounts work.

  • Only $5 to open account
  • Higher dividends earnings than a traditional savings account
  • Funds can be added at any time
  • Terms from 6 months to 5 years
  • Automated monthly deposit of at least $10 required
  • The minimum $10 automatic monthly deposit can come from another MACU account or from an outside source, such as a direct deposit or a transfer from another financial institution. The operative phrase is “automatic monthly deposit,” with the source of the deposit not a determinant.

    2.90%-$100kMountain America Credit Union5 Year Term Deposit Plus
    Rates as of May 22, 2018.

    I confirmed that the $5 opening deposit listed is not a typo. Funds, in any amount, can be added at any time, but,

    Each member is limited to $100,000 in any one or combination of Term Deposit Plus accounts.

    The TDPs are subject to the same Early Withdrawal Penaltie (EWP) as the regular Term Deposits, but the potential severity of MACU's EWP needs to be addressed.

    If your term deposit has an original maturity of 48 months or greater, the
    penalty may equal 365 days dividends on the full amount of the term deposit.

    That's right - a penalty not on the amount being withdrawn, but on the full amount of the term deposit. It certainly makes a partial withdrawal, particularly a small one, rather expensive.

    Many thanks to the DA reader, jamesstewart, for his Forum post about MACU’s latest hot deal.


    Headquartered in West Jordan, Utah, Mountain America Credit Union's field of membership (FOM) is widely varied, with a way for almost anyone with a valid Social Security number to join.

    Easy Membership: The American Consumer Council, one of MACU’s Affiliated Associations, can be joined by anyone with a $5 membership fee, and qualifies for MACU membership.

    Residency: Residents of the Utah counties of Salt Lake, Suchesne, Wasatch (census tract 940300), or Unitah (census tract 940100 or 940200) are eligible to join.

    Relationship: Family members (parent, child, spouse, sibling, grandparent, grandchild, including step- and adopted) of an existing member are membership eligible.

    Affiliation: Employees or volunteers of an MACU SEG or Affiliated Association also qualify.

    Joining Mountain American Credit Union and/or opening a Term Deposit or Term Deposit Plus Account can be done online, or at any of 92 full-service branches located in Arizona (3), Idaho (15), New Mexico (2), Nevada (4) and Utah (68).

    Credit Union Overview

    Mountain America Credit Union has an overall health grade of "A" at, with a Texas Ratio of 5.31% (excellent) based on September 30, 2017 data. In the past year, MACU has increased its total non-brokered deposits by $830.03 million, an excellent annual growth rate of 17.64%. Please refer to our financial overview of Mountain America Credit Union (NCUA Charter #24692) for more details.

    Mountain America Credit Union was originally founded in 1934 as the Salt Lake Telephone Employees Credit Union. Following the 1984 merger with the Postal Workers Credit Union, the name was changed to Mountain America Credit Union. In 1988, MACU merged with the Utah State Credit Union and became the second largest credit union in Utah. The most recent merger occurred in February 2015, when Idaho-based Les Boise Credit Union joined forces with MACU, extending the Credit Union’s footprint into the Boise area. Mountain America Credit Union currently has more than 722,000 members with assets in excess of $6.9 billion.

    How the Term Deposit Compares

    When compared to the 177 similar length-of-term CDs tracked by that require a similar minimum deposit and are available nationally, Mountain America Credit Union's 5-year Term Deposit APY currently shares top billing with Connexus Credit Union’s 60-month Certificate APY.

    How the Term Deposit Plus Compares

    Comparing the 5-year Term Deposit Plus (TDP) to other similar length-of-term CDs is just stating the obvious: the 3.00% APY is an excellent rate. The TDP’s add-on option transforms this account into a savings account/CD hybrid, which offers a higher rate than any other traditional savings (or money market) account on one hand, but severely limits any withdrawals on the other.

    Last year, DA contributor, Charles Rechlin described the ideal features of an add-on CD in his article, Searching for the Elusive Add-On CD. MACU’s TDP has three out of the four features of an ideal add-on CD. If the TDP wasn’t limited to a maximum deposit of $100k, it would be perfect.

    The above rates are accurate as of 2/9/2018.

    To look for the best CD rates, both nationwide and state-specific, please refer to our CD Rates Table page.

    Related Pages: Phoenix CD rates, Boise CD rates, Idaho Falls CD rates, Twin Falls CD rates, Salt Lake City CD rates, Albuquerque CD rates, Reno CD rates, Las Vegas CD rates, 5-year CD rates, nationwide deals

    alan1   |     |   Comment #1
    Re "Easy Membership" paragraph -- I believe the affiliated organization is the American Consumer Council, not the American Credit Council.
    Ken Tumin
    Ken Tumin   |     |   Comment #8
    Thanks. The post has been corrected.
    PeterLindstrom   |     |   Comment #9
    Also, the American Credit Council membership fee appears to be $8 now:
    alan1   |     |   Comment #10
    There's a space at the bottom of the American Consumer Council application for "Promo Code" -- perhaps the code has changed or been eliminated, but for quite a while it was:

    itserich   |     |   Comment #2
    The $100,000 limit is not well disclosed.

    Also, interest withdrawal is subject to penalty.

    "Early Withdrawal Penalties. You have agreed to leave the principal of this account on deposit for the full term stated in your term deposit agreement. Dividends deposited to the term deposit account become part of the principal balance and are not eligible for withdrawal prior to the maturity
    deplorable 1
    deplorable 1   |     |   Comment #3
    Right on cue. They want you to lock up cash @ 3% now because they know that in a year rates will be much higher.
    Kaight   |     |   Comment #5
    Is it not possible though, deplorable 1, that MACU might allow penalty-free withdrawal of interest as it is earned? As such, the interest would never become part of the account's principal amount. And given your belief interest rates are ascending, would it not be preferable anyway to have your interest payments in hand, for re-investment, as the interest is earned?
    alan1   |     |   Comment #7
    Mountain America does not require that monthly interest be credited to the certificate. The Truth in Savings disclosure states:

    Fixed RateTerm Deposit
    Compounding and Crediting - Dividends may be credited to the term deposit account monthly becoming part of the principal balance and are not eligible for
    withdrawal. Alternatively, at the time of opening, you may request to have dividends paid to you in the form of a transfer to another share or
    to a different account monthly rather than credited to this term deposit account. Choosing to have dividends paid to you monthly will reduce earnings. The annual percentage yield is based on the assumption that dividends will remain in
    the term deposit account until maturity.
    (page 2 of PDF at

    I don't know if you can select the monthly interest payout option as part of the online application. You might have to do so by phone or chat or at a branch.
    CuriousDave   |     |   Comment #20
    Can a Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) from an IRA account be made without penalty? If yes, it would mean that, in effect, for now, annual earnings can withdrawn without penalty, because the lowest RMD rate (based on IRS tables) is currently higher than the current highest rate of earnings. Using MACU as an example, the comparison would be between the new 3% "dividend" rate and the IRS' RMD Uniform Lifetime Table rate for most participants at age 70, which is 1.0/27.4 = 3.65%. For participants over 70, the rate goes progressively higher, giving an event wider spread. Of course, with the Fed's plans to continue increasing the 12 month rate, it's likely that longer term rates will continue increasing as well, even if the yield curve remains relatively flat, so down the road the earnings rate on CDs may surpass the low end of the RMD rates.
    Nothing   |     |   Comment #21
    Do it every year w/o penalty...some financial institutions may have to be pushed, i.e. "I'm required to withdraw, why the penalty?" I have found they get the point. And, then there are QCDs, too! Most don't know how to spell QCDs!
    itserich   |     |   Comment #22
    The most logical approach, and financially wise, is to allow interest to accrue on the CD as long as the CD interest rate stays above current CDs. If rates rise, withdraw it and reinvest it.

    The whole point is, MACU does not allow this.
    Att   |     |   Comment #4
    I think with intrest rates going up you will see more punitive EWPs to prevent people from closing CDs if rates rise.
    Fan of this website
    Fan of this website   |     |   Comment #6
    Thanks for posting this Ken. I think the primary benefit is the add-on feature. With a $5 opening and a modest $10/month deposit, you do not have to lock up a significant amount of cash for 5 years, but can use this "as needed" over the next 5 years. There is a reasonable probability that the next recession may happen during that period, which is typically associated with falling interest rates, Having a 3% account as a back-up plan could be useful. If you are waiting for 3.25%, 3.5%, or 4% CDs to materialize in the next year, opening this account does not preclude those investments and costs you almost nothing.
    DOA   |     |   Comment #11
    Unless you can visit a local branch, IRA transfers the way MACU processes them is a little unorthadox. They do not provide IRA transfer documentation that you can fill out and send back to them. It can only be done verbally by phone with a representative and I suspect some errors and time delays when doing it that way.
    MoleHill America
    MoleHill America   |     |   Comment #16
    Their way of handling IRA's borders on the bizarre.
    When I wanted to open one a few years ago, they told be that I had to contact a loan officer.
    Then, they said that they'd have to do a hard credit pull (even though I was already a member).
    When I pressed them on this they said that Chex system would be adequate.
    Geez, I was trying to set-up an IRA, not a line of credit.
    And, I was already vetted for the "Patriot" Act nonsense.
    So, I just took my IRA money elsewhere.
    I'm willing to put-up with some strange procedures at a credit union.
    But, this was just too stupid to have to endure.
    Bozo   |     |   Comment #17
    Truly weird. It's really not rocket science. Most custodian-to-custodian TIRA transfers, it's a simple form (last one I did was one page). Fill it out, the new custodian mails (or FAXes) it to the current custodian, bang, done. In an over-abundance of caution, you should probably call the current custodian to make sure the paperwork has arrived, and the transfer is being processed. I've never encountered the minefield noted in comment #16.
    Dunmovin   |     |   Comment #18
    Need to push the transferor to give you the check to physically deliver to transferee when all are local...highly recommended for ira accounts
    Dunmovin   |     |   Comment #19
    Molehill...had a recent issue where CU (not a member) wanted to pull “credit report” that was only a verification of Soc Sec no. and who I was. Couldn’t be done by experent b/c of freeze. Said I wouldn’t pay to release when they “advertised” Chex System. Bottom line is I gave them a copy of Soc Sec card which worked to become member and open accounts
    Robb   |     |   Comment #12
    Still waiting for that so far elusive nationwide 3%+ 6 Month EWP before putting any more short term cash to work.
    astroval   |     |   Comment #14
    Hmmm, I already have their TDP at 2.80%. Wonder if I can open another one...
    alan1   |     |   Comment #15
    Mountain America permits members to have multiple Term Deposit Plus accounts.

    "Each member is limited to $100,000 in any one or combination of Term Deposit Plus accounts."
    (fine print at
    Kaight   |     |   Comment #23
    Not really understanding why this deal, with a slightly lower APY and a very severe EWP, is preferable to the equally available Freedom FCU deal Ken posted a week ago.

    I cannot predict where interest rates are headed. But if you think they are going south, then this MACU deal is surely the better deal of the two. Otherwise, I would be happy to accept 3+% APY for just three years. Could then re-visit the investment early in 2021, following inauguration of the new POTUS whether that be Trump or somebody else, rather being forced to wait another two years or pay a substantial EWP.
    Mak   |     |   Comment #24
    I myself use a 5 year ladder and I have quite a few CDs, the last thing I want to do is worry about where to put another one before I have to so 5 years works for me... that being said I probably would have done the Freedom one but I guess I missed it, strange because I visit the blog often. I live in AZ so not a problem for me and I opened 2 of the 3% ones, one for me and one for my wife. If rates do fall back at least I'll have somewhere to stick some money in when a CD comes due. Btw, I'm not sure we are out of the woods yet with rates but if we are, opening a small CD that you can add to can't hurt.
    alan1   |     |   Comment #25
    Mak -- Last time I checked, the Freedom Credit Union 3-year CD is still available. Ken Tumin's article on that CD is at
    The credit union's description of the product is at
    itserich   |     |   Comment #26
    The drop down list is broken, and the 3 year list does not show Freedom Credit Union, even when all the filters are clicked. I don't think it ever did. Perhaps that is why the other person thinks it is no longer available.

    This site really needs a way to report technical problems.
    Mak   |     |   Comment #28
    I opened the 3% 5 year Pinnacle CD yesterday and won't have another CD maturing until April but thanks anyways.
    Kaight   |     |   Comment #27
    The Freedom 3.04% three year CD deal remains available at this moment.

    To check availability, Google "Freedom FCU" and go to their home page.  There is a big display ad for the deal in their ad rotation.
    Mak   |     |   Comment #29
    Alan1 and Kaight... thanks
    Dunmovin   |     |   Comment #30
    Is a credit report pull done? Do they use chek systems?
    Anon   |     |   Comment #31
    ChexSystems + Experian
    Mountain America Hikes 5-Year Term Deposit

    UPDATE 12/16/17: The rates for the 5-year Term Deposit and Term Deposit Plus have fallen to 2.60% APY. All other features are the same. This is according to a MACU representative.

    Deal Summary: 5-year Term Deposit, 2.80% APY, $500 minimum deposit. 5-year Term Deposit Plus, 2.80% APY, $5 min/$100k max, minimum $10 automatic monthly deposit.

    Availability: Easy membership requirement

    As DA reader, cumulus, noted in a recent Forum post, Utah-based Mountain America Credit Union (MACU) has raised the rate on its 5-year Term Deposit to 2.80% APY....

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    Mountain America CU Unveils Term Deposit Plus With Add-On Feature
    Deal Summary: Term Deposit Plus Accounts (an add-on version of the regular Term Deposits earning the same APYs), $5 min/$100k max, minimum $10 automatic monthly deposit.

    Availability: Easy membership requirement.

    Utah-based Mountain America Credit Union (MACU) has expanded their product line to include Term Deposit Plus accounts (TDP), which are essentially an add-on version of their Term Deposit accounts.

    The TDPs earn the same APYs as the Term Deposits, but "makes saving for long-term goals easy." The TDP promo page outlines how these new accounts work.

    Continue Reading
    Mountain America Credit Union Raises 5-Year CD Rate

    Deal Summary: 5-year CD, 2.60% APY, $500 minimum deposit.

    Availability: Easy membership requirement.

    Yesterday, Mountain America Credit Union (MACU) increased its 5-year Term Deposit by 10 bps to 2.60% APY. The minimum deposit is $500, with no stated balance cap. The 5-year Term Deposit is also being offered as an IRA (Traditional and Roth), earning the same APY with the same funding requirements.

    MACU is one of the few institutions which has increased its long-term CD rates. Most banks and credit unions that have raised their deposit rates...

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    UPDATE 4/15/2017: Bump Option is no longer available.

    Deal Summary: 5-year Bump Term Deposit, 2.75% APY, one-time rate increase option.

    Availability: Easy membership requirement.

    For a limited-time, Mountain America Credit Union (MACU) is offering a 5-year Term Deposit (2.75% APY) “with a cherry on the top," with the cherry being a one-time bump option. The minimum deposit is $500, with no stated balance cap.

    The 5-year Bump Term Deposit is also being offered as an IRA (Traditional and Roth), earning the same APY with the same...

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    Availability: Easy membership

    Earlier this week, Mountain America Credit Union (MACU) raised the rate on its 5-year Term Deposit (2.30% APY). The minimum deposit is $500, with no maximum balance cap.

    In the past 18 months, the 5-year Term Deposit (CD) has had 8 rates changes, fluctuating between 1.90% APY (February 2014) and today’s 2.30% APY.

    The 5-year CD is also being offered as an IRA (Traditional and Roth) at the same APY and with the same funding requirements.

    As stated in MACU’s Membership Agreement, the Early Withdrawal Penalty reads as...

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