The pledge idea to “abstain” from charging debit fees, pushed this month by the South Carolina Credit Union League as part of the Bank Transfer Day promotion, has now spread to Minnesota with some 83 CUs in that state following the same practice.
The Minnesota Credit Union Network said Thursday that it has adapted the pledge on its website to “continue to provide members fairly priced banking services including debit card fees.”
The declaration does have a caveat: “I pledge my credit union will abstain … as long as market conditions allow us to do so.”
In its media pronouncement as a pledge participant, the $825 million Hiway FCU of St. Paul stressed that its declaration “ is an extension of the credit union’s overall mission to put the needs of individuals above making a profit.”
“Hiway operates solely to meet the needs of those it serves and any earnings received are returned to members in the form of lower loan rates, higher savings rates, quality services – and fewer fees,” said Jeff Schwalen, president/CEO.
Schwalen told Credit Union Times that Hiway CU has seen account openings jump 50% in the past 30 days “and where we got $800,000 a month that has soared to $2.3 million.”
Now that Bank of America and the others have reversed course, “I think we’ll see that pace die down but I’ll be we have another month yet” of big account growth.
A spokeswoman for the Minnesota network said CUs “like what we saw in South Carolina” where 32 credit unions signed identical pledges.
Separately in Minnesota, the $837 million USFCU of Burnsville said as part of Bank Transfer Day promotions it’s offering a $50 deposit “as a welcome to USFCU.”