Backlash against fee gouging from financial institutions led to an online campaign for “Bank Transfer Day,” when individuals pledged to close accounts at big financial institutions and open accounts at credit unions and communi-ty financial institutions. It evidently worked, as thousands of people evidently changed.
Individuals left already
Large retail financial institutions began fee gouging. This has made a lot of people angry. Right after Bank of America announced the $5 debit card fee, “Bank Transfer Day” began as an internet campaign. Everybody was told to change to credit unions and financial institutions by Nov 5 with the campaign.
About $4.5 billion in assets were added to credit unions as 650,000 individuals joined credit unions in the Credit Union National Association. This all happened between September 29 and November 5, according to the New York Times. Large increases in membership were reported by credit unions all over the place. In all of 2010, according to CNN, credit unions added 600,000 brand new members.
Huge surge over weekend
Between November 4 and 6, there was a 54 percent increase in brand new member applications, as reported by the National Association of Federal Credit Unions. Data is still be collated by several credit union associations. Unions are reporting huge increases over the weekend individually though.
The Boeing Employees Credit Union in Seattle, Washington got 659 new members on Saturday alone breaking its own single-day record, as re-ported by the Wall Street Journal.
CNN reported that Digital Federal Credit Union got 133 brand new mem-bers on Saturday. Digital Federal is the largest CU in New England and typically signs up only 85 brand new members on Saturdays.
The Maryland Heights Patch explains that the Missouri Credit Union Associa-tion had 7,100 brand new accounts opened in 131 credit unions in the last six weeks. This involved accounts opened on bank transfer day. The brand new customers added more than $49 million in deposits.
The North Jersey Federal Credit Unions got 48 new accounts on Saturday, according to NorthJer-sey.com. Five is typical.
Credit Unions can be great
As reported by ABC, credit union members are less likely to be charged maintenance fees. A Moebs Services survey discovered almost 80 percent of credit unions offer free checking without requiring a minimum balance, compared to 64 percent of banks. Credit unions also will usually have lower accessible rates of interest on loans and credit cards.
There are 500 credit unions with more than one branch. That is a very low number. Credit union ATMs are also diffi-cult to find. They are generally not discovered very many places.
Wall Street Journal
New York Times
Maryland Heights Patch