Mountain America CU Adds 5-Year CD With Bump Option


UPDATE 41/5/2017: 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 funding requirements.

The fine print on the promotion page, details the bump option.

Rate increase (bump) must be initiated by the member during the term of the deposit. Mountain America will not automatically increase the rate on the account and is not responsible for notifying members of rate fluctuations. Bump option can be done only once during term. Bump option pertains to the prevailing Mountain America Term Deposit rate and will be in effect for the remainder of the term only. The new dividend rate will not be applied retroactively.

As stated on page 36 of the Membership Agreement document, the Early Withdrawal Penalty reads as follows,

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.

Thanks to DA reader, Carpline, for his Forum post about MACU’s 5-Year Bump Term Deposit.


Headquartered in West Jordan, Utah, Mountain America Credit Union's membership eligibility is based on residency, family relationships, or a relationship with an SEG or Affiliated Association:

Easy Membership: As one of MACU’s Affiliated Associations, the American Consumer Council can be joined by anyone with a $5 membership fee;

Residency: Salt Lake County, Suchesne County, Wasatch County (census tract 940300), or Unitah County (census tract 940100 or 940200).

Relationship: Family member of an existing member.

Affiliation: Employee or volunteer of an MACU SEG or Affiliated Association.

Joining Mountain American Credit Union and/or opening the 5-year Bump Term Deposit can be done online, or at any of 88 branches located in Arizona (2), Idaho (15), New Mexico (2), Nevada (4) and Utah (65).

Credit Union Overview

Mountain America Credit Union has an overall health grade of "A" at, with a Texas ratio of 6.22% (excellent) based on September 30, 2016 data. In the past year, MACU has increased its total non-brokered deposits by $584.4 million, an excellent annual growth rate of 14.18%. 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. Today, Mountain America Credit Union has over 645,900 members with assets in excess of $5.9 billion.

How the Bump Term Deposit Compares

When compared to the 167 similar length-of-term CDs tracked by that require a similar minimum deposit and are available nationally, Mountain America Credit Union's 5-year Bump Term Deposit APY currently ranks first.

*Note: Melrose Credit Union is currently operating under an NCUA conservatorship.

The above rates are accurate as of 2/13/2017.

To look for the best nationwide CD rates and the best CD rates in your state, please refer to our CD rates table or our Rates Map page.

Ally6770   |     |   Comment #1
Great find. Hope to see more of these for our savers.
ChasR   |     |   Comment #2
I own a MACU 5-year One Bump Term Certificate I opened in 2015. I called them this morning and got the rate raised from 2.30% to the 2.75% APY over the phone.
I thought I owned two of these things but it turned out I was wrong. I tried to open the second one but was unable to do so because of MACU's POD restrictions. The CSR confirmed to me this morning that a POD beneficiary cannot be put on a Term Deposit unless all the customer's accounts at MACU have that beneficiary. Anyone considering loading up on this CD and going over the NCUA insurance level of $250k through PODs may be hampered. Multiple beneficiaries on all accounts may work for some people. It's extremely inconvenient in my personal situation.
jimbeau   |     |   Comment #3
Well, MACU is just one crazy place to do business with. I'm already a member. I've got a joint share account with my wife and a regular old taxable CD. Since this deal is good for IRA's I wanted to create an IRA account with them. Despite the fact that I've been a member for years, they want to do another credit pull on me before they will open the IRA account. It took nearly an hour to find this out. First I got a CSR that didn't know anything about IRA's. Then, I got transferred to an IRA specialist. Then, I got transferred to a loan officer. Yup, I had to talk to a loan officer in order to create a new regular share account under just my name. But before this I have to unfreeze my credit report. Then I'd have to call the loan officer back. Who, by the way doesn't accept calls for part of the day. So, he'd have to get back to me. Once that was done, I'd have to go back to the IRA department before they would even send me the IRA account application! They have no secure email to send the account application back to them. I'd have to fax it back to them. What an absolute joke.
ChasR   |     |   Comment #4
Good luck. You need it with a lot of these credit unions.
It's this sort of hassle that has led me to move the bulk of my IRA assets into brokered CDs. I mean, with direct IRA CDs, it sometimes takes a day or two just to get back where you started from. When you do, you've still got the paperwork, faxes, mailed checks and the rest to deal with..
I know a lot of readers here (probably a majority) think the downsides of brokered CDs far outweigh the upside. I come out the other way with my IRAs, just because of the peace of mind I get.
For example, I've got a GS Bank brokered CD maturing in my Fidelity IRA account on Wednesday. I can execute a "buy" trade immediately. If I want a 5-year CD, I can get 2.35% from non-callable CDs of Capital One or Discover. Since I want to shorten my IRA maturities right now, I'll probably buy a 1.80% Discover 3-year non-callable CD.
But, to each his or her own . I may be singing a different tune in the future if market rates hit the roof. But at least my brokered CDs have a survivor's option attached.
jimbeau   |     |   Comment #6
Before the downturn, most of my CDs were with Fidelity. At that time, their rates were competitive with CD's purchased directly from banks or credit unions. Since interest rates were still on the downward trend, I didn't worry about getting burned by interest rate risk. Back then it was actually possible to sell the CD's at a profit on the secondary market even after factoring in Fidelity's fees. I was still working, so I was just using my 401K at Fidelity as a place to store cash and be able to defer income taxes for as long as humanly possible.

After the crash, Fidelity's brokered CD rates were just awful. So were most bank offerings. Over time I had my wife slowly move most everything out of Fidelity and banks and into credit unions that I found for her. Since she was retired, I guilt-tripped her into doing all of the paperwork. Since we got the CD yields back up over 2%, it was worth the effort. Basically, it means that we've broken even with inflation since the downturn. That was impossible with the bank CDs at Fidelity.

Now that I'm retired she's wised-up to that trick and dumped it back on me. For the first year, it was kind of a game to go rate chasing. Last year, I had taxable cash available for some of the 2% plus CD deals that came-up early in the year. Taxable funds are pretty easy to transfer to credit unions. However, this year pretty much all of my taxable cash is already tied-up. So, I'm just left with IRA funds to play with. Moving IRA funds into and out of credit unions just doesn't happen fast enough to take advantage of most of the CD deals out there. A lot of them will only accept checks for IRA transfers. That means every one of them costs you at least a week in lost interest. For 5 year CDs this doesn't have much affect on the actual interest rate, but for a 1 year it does.

So, I may be coming around to your way of thinking about the most of the IRA funds that I have. This is despite the fact that in a rising interest rate environment the brokered CDs will lose value over time. Unlike EWP's, you won't know exactly how much you are out until that time comes. For that reason alone, pretty much any brokered CD that I purchase will be considered to be untouchable during the term.


I've alway enjoyed your posts.  They've contained a lot of useful information.  Particularly those about the EWP dodge at Penfed and State Farm Bank for us old farts.  For tax reasons, I've started taking around 25K in IRA distributions each year (even though I don't have to yet).   In 2016 I did that an still paid zero taxes to both the state and feds.  A side benefit to this is by siphoning off some IRA money now, it will lower my RMD later.

I can put 26K in Penfed or State Farm Bank and if they're the lowest IRA rate that I've got when I want to do my annual tax free distribution, I can take 25K out of Penfed or State Farm without incurring an EWP.  It's the equivalent of having an IRA savings account yielding over 2%.   I'd dump another 26K in them for the potential rollover scenario that you discussed.  But, I'm shooting my 401K in the head this year.  Maybe next year.

That's probably what I'm going to do with the IRA funds I have in a savings account.   Better that than chasing this 2.75% special that will probably disappear before I jump thru all of MACU's IRA hoops.   Besides that, MACU ticked me off back in 2014 when they doubled the EWP.  
ChasR   |     |   Comment #17
jambeau: I like to be recognized when I deserve it, but I don't recall ever posting about the EWPs at PenFed or State Farm. Maybe it was something Ken wrote--or another reader in a comment. My principal IRA CD dodge is at Synchrony, where I have a grandfathered CD that allows unlimited, penalty-free distributions because I'm over 59-1/2.
  |     |   Comment #20
Good info re penalty free distributions.
hank   |     |   Comment #9
why are your credit reports frozen? Have you been a victim of id theft? I have and I initially put a credit freeze on my accounts but it was a real pain unfreezing them every time I wanted to open a bank of cu account so I unfroze them all.
Since I have now a 7 year credit alert on my accounts, they are now supposed to call me anytime someone tries to open an account in my name and I haven't had any problems. what is your viewpoint?
jimbeau   |     |   Comment #13
Thanks for the information on using a credit alert instead of a credit freeze.

We've had one of our credit cards whacked a couple of times in the past. Technically, that's identity theft. But, I'm more worried about people attempting to open NEW accounts in our name.

The easiest way to prevent that is to freeze the credit reports. Since I'm a senior, it only costs me $5 to unfreeze them. Since it you can do it online or over the phone, it's not that big a deal.

So, while I probably could go the credit alert route, I'm a little hesitant to do it. It relies on the credit provider following proper procedures.

Of course, you could argue that sleazeball credit providers might even extend credit when the credit report is frozen.

The real issue is that all of the banks and credit unions are overreacting to the Patriot Act. They can just a easily vet your identity by simply using the CHEX systems.

In fact, some financial institutions are moving away from using credit reports. They're relying on third-party databases.

That's opens a whole other can of worms with regards to maintaining the privacy of one's personal financial information. How many people out there have all of my personal data?

Mountain America's insistence on doing another credit inquiry is just beyond stupid. If you've already have an account with a financial institution, you've already been vetted.

This and the fact that they doubled their EWP in 2014 have made me rethink whether or not I want to remain a member of this credit union.
hank   |     |   Comment #15
I am getting close to retirement but not there. I missed out on a cd at veridian a few months ago because it took me to long to unfreeze the account, but you are correct that it does rely on the provider of credit doing the proper procedures which they may not always do
gregk   |     |   Comment #5
Market leader as this might be now the bar has risen considerably over the last few months, and even a 3% 5 year CD probably wouldn't get my money. Trump is just such an erratic character, and the economic consequences of any of his scatterbrained ideas being enacted so unpredictable, that it's difficult making any longer term decisions in this kind of environment.  Someone might say that over the last decade or so you've never gone wrong grabbing a deal like this one when investable funds have been available, - that waiting for the higher rates that never came has been a losing strategy, and the small uptick in rates we've seen over the last few months is hardly a trend guaranteed to continue, so take what you can get now without the worries of regret that unrealistic fantasies might induce.  But I'm wary of such logic.  At the very least many signs point to at least a short-term period of higher rates, that is until Trump's lunacies are seen for what they are, and my own intention is to wait until deep into the summer before committing myself.  This is a small stakes game we play here in any case, so no decisions are really fateful, - but if we get two Fed hikes by then (and the head of steam they'd represent) plus a dose of inflation I believe 3.50% for 5 years would very much be expected, - in which case the 2.75% that looks so good now (and even Andrews' 3% trick a few months ago) will be seen as an impulse that should have been resisted.
jimbeau   |     |   Comment #7
I've given-up on listening to anyone's predictions on interest or inflation rates.

My goal is to have my average CD rate break even with inflation. The trailing inflation rate for the last 12 months has been around 2.1% (CPI-U). So, with you have to go out to 4-5 year CDs to break even (ignoring specials).

The other thing that I watch it the yield to maturity for 5 year TIPS. If the YTM on them goes positive, I try to purchase some of these each year as a pure inflation hedge. They were negative pretty much all of last year.

Right now, the YTM is actually negative. That plus deflation made TIPS dogs in 2016. For the last five years, TIPS have yielded around 1.3%. That's breaking even with inflation the hard way.

The good thing about TIPS is that if you purchase them at or below par and hold them to maturiy, you can't lose principal. The bad thing is even with the paltry interest rates of the last few year's CD's have beat TIPS handily.

I'm old enough to remember runaway inflation. So, there's always the fear in the back of my head that it'll come back and eat my retirement nest egg thru lost purchasing power.

If interest rates go up and force the YTM of 5 year TIPS positive, I'll purchase more TIPS and iBonds to protect against the possibility of inflation outrunning interest rates.
dollarsncents   |     |   Comment #8
I never put much credence in anybody's "predictions", particularly on an internet blog. No matter what the future "may" look like, in today's unpredictable world, it can change drastically overnight. We all have our own thoughts and do our best to plan accordingly.

Getting back to Mountain America CU's 5yr CD offering, I think it's good. However I quit chasing CD rates offered by CUs. Four memberships is already more than I care for.
Rickny   |     |   Comment #14
I agree. A lot more effort to open CDS and become a member and having that small share account in place. I do have to state that Penfed has a 5 minute process to open CDS once your a member but theyes are no longer leading the pack. Maybe Penfed will by Melrose :).
spentcattle   |     |   Comment #12
What do you think the fed funds rate would have to be to get 4% again in five year Cd's?
  |     |   Comment #10
If this had a six month penalty the bump factor would make it a bit of a no brainer I believe.
spentcattle   |     |   Comment #11
I think if this one had a six month penalty with the bump feature it would be a bit of a no brainer
outtempster   |     |   Comment #19
yeah, penalty is 1 year. doesn't seem a good deal for me...
Rickny   |     |   Comment #21
Agree. Just seems like a hassle to open a new account at any institution especially Crefit Unions. Also, they all have different requirements like credit pulls and acceptable identification. Easier to cross the boarder than open a CD
outtempster   |     |   Comment #16
Ken, when you say "American Credit Council" in your article, the link shows American Consumer Council. Do you actually mean "American Consumer Council"?
Rickny   |     |   Comment #18
Click on the link you are right.
Ken Tumin
Ken Tumin   |     |   Comment #22
That was a typo. It's now fixed. Thanks!
Bozo   |     |   Comment #23
The MACU Membership Agreement sets forth the EWPs for non-IRA CDs, but is somewhat unclear as to IRA CDs. It incorporates by reference a separate IRA Disclosure, but (try as I did) I could not find it. I was looking for any EWP waivers for partial withdrawals for folks over 59 1/2, or in RMD territory. Anybody have any information to share? I'm attempting to compile a more thorough list of financial institutions which permit exceptions to the EWP for partial withdrawals from IRA CDs (my recent posts refer).

Last year, I stumbled upon a local credit union (Patelco) which offers the perquisite totally by accident. I was considering transferring a maturing IRA CD to Patelco, pulled up the Members' Handbook, and was surprised to find the EWP waiver for folks over 59 1/2 with IRA CDs. This waiver (at Patelco) actually went further than others, and apparently allows both complete or partial withdrawals for folks over 59 1/2 with no EWP. I verified this with the local Patelco office manager.

Bottom-line Analysis. Presumably, I could walk into Patelco tomorrow, withdraw $200K or so from the 5-yr IRA CD without any EWP, get a check, and then have 60 days to decide where I wanted to re-invest the proceeds. While I could do this only once every 365 days, per IRS rules, it seems like a no-brainer.
grnbsh   |     |   Comment #24
Thanks Ken the posting the best rates for CD's. I opened an account at MACU online on 2/17/2017 and was able to go online to finish up and secure MACU's great 5 year Bump Term Deposit at 2.75% APY about 20 days later. Customer Service was great on the phone and though e-mails.
JCR059   |     |   Comment #25
I just opened the 2.75% bump up CD. The process went very smoothly as I moved the proceeds from a 5 yr. CD that matured at Sun Federal Credit Union in PA to MACU in UT. Both credit unions are in the same Co-Op Nationwide Credit Union Network. It was important to me to able to do the transaction in person at a branch location near me in PA with a paper trail to support each step. I made the deposit from Sun into MACU seamlessly.The Customer Service staff at MACU was very efficient and prompt in setting up my new accounts and providing paper work to support the new CD. I would highly recommend MACU particularly if you bank with a credit union in the same network as it makes the process very easy.
RetiredNC   |     |   Comment #26
Did anyone open an IRA CD? I need to make a trustee-to-trustee transfer as well as set up Required Minimum Distributions. It concerned me that this credit union showed none of their forms online. I spoke with the IRA administrator there, and her vague reassurances and dismissive "I do this every day," made me very uneasy. Would not send me the forms to look over.
LuvCD   |     |   Comment #27
NC...If you think that is "fun"...most institutions never heard of QCDs and one has to educate them...and then when you want the check payable to the charity BUT want to have the check sent to you for personal delivery...much fun! I had to "threaten" one by saying ..."do you want me take ALL the ira funds in a distribution and move to another institution?" Usually they get the message then! Start small!
Sam   |     |   Comment #28
Just opened an account today and established connection with Ally Bank instantly so the CD will be funded tomorrow. The special ends on Friday.
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