Alliant Credit Union increased rates on its savings account and certificates. The savings account rate increased 10 basis points to 0.90% APY. Alliant’s savings account rate had been a little low for the last two years. It’s nice to see this rate increase that brings Alliant’s rate close to the top savings account rates at internet banks.
Alliant’s certificate rates also increased in February. The CD rates increased from 5 to 20 basis points, with Alliant’s Jumbo certificates having the largest rate increases. Alliant has brought back premium rates for its Jumbo CDs. These require a minimum deposit of $25,000. The highest rate is now 2.15% APY for a term of 48 to 60 months. This requires a $25,000 minimum deposit. For a minimum deposit of $1,000, the rate has remained the same at 2.10% APY. The largest rate jump occurred on Alliant’s short-term CDs with terms from 12 to 17 months. The rate increased 10 basis points to 1.00% APY for a $1,000 minimum deposit, and the rate increased 20 basis points to 1.10% APY for a $25,000 minimum. The early withdrawal penalty is still only 180 days of dividends for CDs with terms of 2 years and longer. No partial withdrawals are allowed. Please refer to this Alliant certificates page for more details on rates and early withdrawal penalties.
Thanks to Pearlbrown who first mentioned the rate hikes in the DA forum.
Alliant Credit Union had very competitive savings account rates for several years before 2010. During that time the rate was close to the leading savings account rates at internet banks. Things changed at Alliant a few years ago. The savings account rate went down more than it did at several internet banks. I did a chart showing Alliant’s rate and the savings account rate at Capital One 360 (formerly ING Direct) since 2011. In recent times, Capital One 360 has never been a rate leader, but it has kept its savings account rate reasonably competitive. Thus, it’s useful to use it as a benchmark to compare others. As you can see below, Alliant’s savings account had higher rates than Capital One 360 before 2013, but in early 2013, Alliant’s rate fell to 0.70%, and it remained at this low rate until October of last year. Capital One’s rate bottomed at 0.75%, and it has remained at this level since October 2012.
Even though Alliant Credit Union’s savings account rate has been a little low in the last few years, many DA readers have remained with Alliant due to non-rate reasons such as a great ACH bank-to-bank transfer system and superb customer service. The ACH transfers initiated through Alliant are fast (typically taking only one business day), and Alliant’s ACH dollar limits are reasonably large ($100K per day for those who have been members for at least 30 days). You can also set up an unlimited number of links to your accounts at other banks or credit unions.
Alliant Credit Union also has a nice interest checking account that you may want to use as your primary checking account. It’s a free checking account with a high rate option, and its features continue to improve. The latest enhancement is ATM fee refunds. Alliant will now reimburse their checking account holders up to $20 per month in ATM fees. For more details about Alliant’s checking account and its ATM policy, please refer to Alliant’s free checking page.
Membership and Opening Accounts
There two easy ways to qualify for Alliant membership. First is through the PTA (either national or local). Second is through the Foster Care to Success (FCS) organization. According to Alliant's Foster Care to Success page:
Members of FCS are eligible to join Alliant Credit Union [...] By making a $10 or greater donation to the Foster Care to Success (FCS), you will become a member of FCS, receive literature and other information from FCS, and qualify to join Alliant.
For the full details on membership, please refer to Alliant's membership page. Those who live or work in parts of Chicagoland can be immediately eligible to join.
You can join Alliant online. Also, most accounts can be opened online and funded with an ACH transfer from your existing bank.
Alliant Credit Union Overview
Alliant Credit Union used to be United Airlines Employees’ Credit Union. That's why many of their branches are located in airports.
In addition to Chicago, Alliant Credit Union branches are located in the metro areas of Los Angeles, San Francisco, Phoenix, Denver, Houston, Washington DC and Newark. Note, some of these branches are located inside airports and are not publicly accessible.
One downside with Alliant is that it's not part of any shared branch network.
With $8.09 billion in assets, Alliant Credit Union is one of the top ten largest credit unions in the nation. It has an overall health grade at DepositAccounts.com of an "A" with a Texas Ratio of 3.17% (excellent) based on September 30, 2014 data. Please refer to our financial overview of Alliant Credit Union for more details. The credit union is federally insured by the NCUA (Charter # 67955).