As DA reader, SYC, broke the news in a Forum post earlier this week: NASA Federal Credit Union (NASA Federal) has yet again upped the rates on its long-running, competitive Share Certificate Specials (SCS) – 9-month (4.00% APY), 15-month (4.05% APY), and 49-month (4.10% APY). The 9-month SCS now has a substantially higher rate than currently offered on any other nationally available 6-9 month CD. Even though the 15-month and 49-month SCS had healthy increases of 30 bps and 25 bps, respectively, the resulting APYs are disappointing.
The minimum opening deposit for any SCS is $10k of new money, with no stated balance cap. As stated in the fine print on the Share Certificate Rates page, “new funds brought from an external source” are required for the opening deposit that must be made between November 1, 2022 and November 30, 2022. No balance cap is specified, but the Rates page does state,
Credit Union reserves the right to limit deposits into this special Certificate.
This limited-time offer is subject to change at any time without notice.
All three SCS are also offered as IRA SCS (Traditional and Roth), earning the same APYs with the same deposit requirements.
As stated in the Certificate Terms and Conditions document, the Early Withdrawal Penalty reads as follows:
182 days for certificate accounts with terms up to 24 months and
365 days for certificate accounts with terms greater than 24 months.
There is a 10-day grace period before a SCS automatically renews as a standard Share Certificate (SC) at the rate in effect at the time of renewal. The 49-month SCS renews as a 48-month SC; the 15-month SCS renews as a 12-month SC; and the 9-month SCS renews as a 6-month SC. If you withdraw the funds, no interest will be paid for the grace period.
Funding and Other Particulars
The following information is from the Certificate Terms & Conditions document and a conversation with CSR.
- Funding – ACH, wire, or CO-OP shared branch transfer. Must be funded within ten days of opening, with rate locked in during that time.
- Maturing Funds – distributed by check, wire, or transferred into an existing NASA Federal checking or savings account.
- Dividends – compound and are credited monthly and can be withdrawn without penalty.
- Grace Period – 10 calendar days before automatic renewal.
- Beneficiaries – unlimited, equal shares, Social Security numbers required.
- Credit Check – soft pull.
Headquartered in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, NASA Federal Credit Union’s field of membership (FOM) offers a way for virtually any U.S. citizen/resident to qualify:
Easy Membership: NASA Federal will provide a one-year complimentary affiliated membership in the National Space Society (NSS), which “entitles you to full NASA Federal membership.” Joining one of 14 affiliated associations also qualifies for credit union membership, but some of these associations have a fee to join, ranging from $20 to $50.
Employment: Employees or retirees of NASA Headquarters, any NASA Center or Facility, or National Academy of Sciences are eligible for membership. In addition, any employee or member of one of more than 900 NASA Federal partner companies also qualify for membership. (A complete list of partner companies can be found on the first page of the online application.)
Relationship: Relatives or household members of current NASA Federal members are eligible for membership (the online application requires the current member’s account number).
Joining NASA Federal and/or opening a Share Certificate Special can be done online or at any of 11 full-service NASA Federal branches located in Maryland (6), Virginia (3), and Washington, D.C. (2). The Goddard Space Flight Center branch in Greenbelt, Maryland is “Closed Until Further Notice,” while the two DC branches, the Alexandria (VA), and the Arlington (VA) branch locations each open one or two days a week.
Opening a Primary Savings account with a minimum $5 deposit is required to establish a NASA Federal membership.
NASA Federal is a member of the CO-OP Shared Branch network, giving members access to more than 5,000 branch locations across the country (including more than 120 locations in the Washington DC metro area) to conduct many business transactions.
Shared Branches allow members of participating credit unions across the country to conduct most of their financial transactions as if they were at their own credit union branch.
Credit Union Overview
NASA Federal Credit Union has an overall health grade of "A+" at DepositAccounts.com, with a Texas Ratio of 2.07% (excellent) based on June 30, 2022 data. In the past year, NASA Federal has increased its total non-brokered deposits by $272.2 million, an excellent annual growth rate of 10.05%. Please refer to our financial overview of NASA Federal Credit Union (NCUA Certificate # 6328) for more details.
NASA Federal Credit Union was established in 1949 when seven members of the scientific community (with just a total of $2 in deposits) received approval for a credit union charter serving NASA employees. With a mission to help its members achieve a brighter financial future, NASA FCU is actively (and literally) involved in building the community.
In 2021, NASA Federal Credit Union was responsible for more than $860 million in innovative mortgage products designed for homebuyers with little or no down payment, including first-time homebuyers, conforming and jumbo first mortgages, fixed rate seconds and home equity lines of credit.
NASA FCU is currently the third largest credit union headquartered in Maryland and the 107th largest credit union in the nation, with assets in excess of $3.8 billion and nearly 210,000 members.
How the 9-Month Share Certificate Special Compares
When compared to similar length-of-term CDs tracked by DepositAccounts.com that available nationally and have minimum deposit requirements of $10k or less, no banks or credit unions have a higher rate than currently offered on the NASA FCU 9-month Share Certificate Specials. The following table compares the 9-month Share Certificate Special to the two highest-rate CDs from other credit unions and the two highest-rate CDs from banks.
The above information and rates are accurate as of 11/3/2022.
To look for the best CD rates, both nationwide and state specific, please refer to our CD Rates Table page.