Orion FCU (TN/MS/AR) Adds 100 Basis Points To Premium Checking APY


Availability: Residents of three Tennessee counties, two Mississippi counties, and two Arkansas counties, all in the greater Memphis metropolitan area; 30+ SEGs.

At the beginning of October, Orion Federal Credit Union (Orion FCU) raised the rate on its Premium Checking account. Qualifying balances up to $20k now earn 3.00% APY, with qualifying balances over $20k earning 0.05% APY. Non-qualifying balances do not earn any interest.

4.00*%-$20kOrion Federal Credit UnionPremium Checking
OTHER TIERS: 0.05% $20k+
Rates as of November 18, 2018.

The Premium Checking account was added to the product line in November 2014, earning an unimpressive 1.00% APY. The rate increased to 2.00% APY four months later and was in effect until just three weeks ago.

Premium Checking Qualification Requirements

  • Electronically deposit no less than $500.
  • Perform 8 signature based debit card transactions.

The Premium Checking account has no minimum balance requirement or opening balance requirement, but there is a $5 monthly service fee if the monthly qualification requirements are not met.

Thanks to DA reader, greco, for his Forum post about the Premium Checking account.


Headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee, Orion Federal Credit Union’s field of membership (FOM) is primarily residency based, with individuals who live, work, or worship in seven “Mid South” counties eligible to join. Those counties include:

Tennessee: Fayette, Shelby, and Tipton

Mississippi: Desoto and Marshall

Arkansas: Crittendon and Mississippi

Family members of eligible or current Orion FCU members also qualify for membership.

Employees and members of more than 30 SEGs are also eligible to join.

Note: The FOM is listed only at the beginning of the “Account Tool.” You must enter your name, address, birthdate, and SS number before the eligibility details are revealed.

Joining Orion FCU and/or opening a Premium Checking account can be done online, or at any of nine Tennessee branches located in Collierville, Cordova, and Memphis (7).

Credit Union Overview

Orion Federal Credit Union (NCUA Charter # 24831) has an overall health grade of "A+" at DepositAccounts.com, with a Texas ratio of 2.77% (excellent) based on June 30, 2016 data. In the past year, Orion FCU increased its total deposits by $34.2 million, an excellent growth rate of 6.86%. Please refer to our financial overview of Orion Federal Credit Union for more details.

Established in 1957 as the Memphis Area Teachers Credit Union, Orion Federal Credit Union as grown to become Tennessee’s 7th largest credit union, with more than 62,600 members and assets in excess of $621 million. The Credit Union’s name wasn’t changed until 2011, following an FOM expansion. An active supporter of the Memphis area educational system, Orion FCU donated $25k to the Memphis Library Foundation in 2015

There’s something about kicking back and gazing up at the stars that inspires dreaming. We wanted
to have a designated place in our Cloud901 lab for teens to do just that, since dreams are the starting point of any creative endeavor. Our Dream Catchers Zone, featuring long lounges for reclining and starry-sky ceiling panels, will be the place teens can go to relax and let their creative imaginations soar. Orion’s generous sponsorship of this area is a true gift to Memphis teens who want to dream big.

How the Premium Checking Compares

When compared to the 28 High Yield Reward Checking Accounts tracked by DepositAccounts.com, which are available within the FOM and have maximum qualifying balances of at least $20k, Orion Federal Credit Union’s Premium Checking APY currently ranks second.

The above rates are accurate as of 10/21/2016.

To look for the best Reward Checking Account rates, both nationwide and state specific, please refer to our High Yield Reward Checking Account rates table or our Rates Map page.

0.50% Reward Checking Account at Memphis Area Teacher's Credit Union
Update 9/07/09: The top yield has fallen to 0.50% APY. See bottom of post for the rate history.

Memphis Area Teacher's CU is offering a reward checking account that pays 0.50% APY on balances up to $25,000 (0.50% for above) and refunds ATM fees if the following monthly requirements are met:
  • 10 debit card purchases
  • one direct deposit
  • access online banking and receive e-statements
If these are not met, the rate falls to 0.05%. There are no monthly service charges.

I noticed in the small print that it states "credit approval required." So this may mean...

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