Callahan & Associates' Blog
Off The CUFFRSS
May 24, 2012
Several credit unions offer some of the nation’s highest returns on checking accounts, according to a newly released Bankrate.com study.
By Rebecca McClay
More By Rebecca McClay
A group of high-yield checking accounts that collectively yields more than 34 times the national average includes several credit unions this year, according to Bankrate.com’s 2012 High-Yield Checking Survey.
"For accountholders that can routinely meet the monthly requirements, high-yield checking accounts are a no-brainer cash investment," Greg McBride, CFA, senior financial analyst for Bankrate.com, says in a press release. "Investors should calibrate the balance they plan to hold in the account with an APY offering that maximizes their return."
Bankrate surveyed 57 high-yield checking accounts from banks, thrifts, and credit unions and found that they averaged 2.05% return, more than 34 times the 0.06% national average for interest-bearing checking accounts. Though the high-yield checking average is lower than the 2.56% in 2011 and 3.30% in 2012, it still offers greater return than keeping the cash liquid.
Credit unions offering the top yields include Advantage Plus FCU, BECU, Connexus Credit Union, Consumers Credit Union and First New England Credit Union. First Tech Credit Union, Lake Michigan Credit Union, Midwest America Credit Union, Pacific Resource Credit Union, and Provident Credit Union also offered high returns.
High-yield checking accounts often have no monthly fees or balance requirements but they often require a certain number of debit transactions from the consumer. Advantage Plus FCU ($113M, Pocatello, ID) offers a 2.25% APY, requiring a minimum of 12 monthly debit transactions and a $15,000 balance cap. BECU ($10.6B, Seattle, WA) offers a 6.17% APY with a minimum of 1 monthly debit transactions and a $500 balance cap and Connexus Credit Union ($389.4M, Wausau, WI) offers a 2.0% APY with 15 monthly debit transactions and a $25,000 balance cap.
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