In November 2019, NASA Federal Credit Union (NASA Federal) increased the rates on its three Share Certificate Specials (SCS), placing the APYs at or near the top of their respective term lengths. Those rates lasted three months before they began to drop to mediocre levels.
NASA Federal recently raised the rate on the 9-month SCS by 50 bps, giving it a competitive 1.50% APY. Surprisingly, the rates on the two other SCSs (15-month, 1.10% APY; 49-month, 1.35% APY) were actually lowered by 10 bps at the time of the 9-month SCS rate increase.
The minimum opening deposit is $10k, with no stated balance cap. In a change from my last NASA Federal blog post, new money is no longer required to open a 9-month SCS.
The SCS is also offered as an IRA (Traditional and Roth), earning the same APY 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 the 9-month SCS automatically renews to a 6-month term. If you withdraw the funds, no interest will be paid for the grace period.
Funding and Accessing Maturing Funds
A Share Certificate Special must be funded within ten days of opening, with the rate guaranteed during those ten days. Options for funding include ACH, wire transfer, or through a transfer from an existing NASA Federal checking or savings account. NASA Federal participates in the CO-OP Shared Branch network, making the transfer of funds relatively simple.
Maturing funds can be distributed by check, wire, or transferred into an existing NASA Federal checking or savings account.
Unlimited beneficiaries (equal shares) can be named, with a Social Security number required for each beneficiary.
Headquartered in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, NASA Federal Credit Union’s field of membership offers a way for virtually anyone, with several ways to qualify:
Easy Membership: Membership in one of 14 affiliated associations, qualifies for Credit Union 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.”
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 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. The Membership Certificate Application is also available as a download and specifically lists the three SCSs at the top of application.
Mail Application and Check to: NASA Federal Credit Union, Special Offer, P.O. Box 1538,
Bowie, MD 20717-1538. Be sure to fund your Certificate within 10 days of account opening!
NASA Federal has temporarily suspended access to all branch lobbies.
Outside ATMs will be available at all branch locations and drive-thru teller or remote teller service will be available at the Collington, Columbia, Greenbelt, and Oak Hall locations. Should you need in-person assistance, please call us at 301-390-4537. This is a temporary phone number to assist with branch-related transactions only.
A Primary Savings account (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 5.83% (excellent) based on December 31, 2019 data. In the past year, NASA Federal has increased its total non-brokered deposits by $276.62 million, an excellent annual growth rate of 12.95%. 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 a total of $2 in deposits) received approval for a credit union charter serving NASA employees. NASA FCU is currently the third largest credit union headquartered in Maryland and the 84th largest credit union in the nation, with assets in excess of $3.1 billion and more than 181,000 members.
How the Share Certificate Specials Compare
When compared to 205 similar length-of-term CDs tracked by DepositAccounts.com, which are nationally available and require a minimum deposit of $10k or less, NASA Federal Credit Union's 9-month Share Certificate Special APY currently ranks second.
The above rates are accurate as of 5/16/2020.
To find the best CD rates, both nationwide and state specific, please refer to our CD Rates Table page.