Published on 02-15-2018
Categories: From Chuck
One of the best parts about being the CEO of a cooperative is that I don’t have to answer to Wall Street investors. I answer to our members, and my motivation each day isn’t to figure out how to make as much profit as possible, it’s to ensure that the value we create benefits you.
I don’t have meetings about how to squeeze a few more dollars out of customers and increase stock prices a few points. Instead, we talk about how to best use our earnings to give back to our members. That can mean lowering rates on loans or increasing dividends on deposits; lowering or even eliminating fees; or investing in new products, services and technology.
Sometimes, it simply means giving money directly back to the people who helped us earn it.
On Valentine’s Day, we paid out our Loyalty Bonus dividend. More than 51,000 members earned a share of the $2.5 million payout. Both figures are our largest totals ever. The Loyalty Bonus is great way for Coastal to reward the people who help make us successful. Payouts were based on members’ aggregate loan and deposit amounts, as well as the length of their membership.
Over the past seven years, we’ve given back more than $14.2 million through the Loyalty Bonus and its predecessor program.
I know that every bit of extra money helps, and would love to hear how you plan to use your Loyalty Bonus. Share your Loyalty Bonus story by commenting on our Facebook page or tagging us (@coastal24) in a tweet.
Loyalty Bonus is just a small part of how we give back. Each year, we try to quantify all the ways we help put more money back into our members’ wallets. This can be through lower fees and loan rates, better deposit dividends, and other incentives. We take a look at what members pay (or earn) by doing business with us, and compare that to how much less they’d have from doing business with our big bank competitors.
We’ve estimated that our 2017 Member Giveback totaled nearly $23.5 million.
Of course, that only includes what we’re able to count. Each year, we see the growing list of fees that some of our competitors charge, that we simply don’t. I’m sure if we could find an easy way to count the times members avoided those fees by choosing Coastal over a bank, it would add a few more million to the total.
Certificate Rate Increases
Speaking of ways to put more money in members’ wallets, Coastal recently took a look at our certificate offering and made some changes to help make sure our rates are more attractive.
As of February 1, we increased the dividend rate of three popular certificates:
We also added an 18 month special certificate at 1.25% APY*. These changes put Coastal’s certificates in line with, or ahead of, our local competitors, and should help members who are looking to earn a higher return on your savings without having to expose yourself to the risks of a volatile stock market. As an added point of comparison, our minimum to open one of these certificates is only $250, where others might require several thousand dollars to get the same rate.
Regardless of how we’ve given back, I hope that you’ve personally found value from your Coastal membership, and I look forward to helping you become successful in your financial journey.
President & CEO
*APY = Annual Percentage Yield. Savings rates are subject to change daily. Minimum deposit to open a certificate account is $250. All member deposits are insured up to $250,000 (funds in IRA accounts are eligible for separate insurance protection up to $250,000 by the National Credit Union Administration, an agency of the United States Government. Dividends are based on the Credit Union's earnings at the end of a dividend period and thus cannot be guaranteed. On certificate accounts the Credit Union may impose a penalty for early withdrawal. Fees may reduce earnings on accounts. Dividends may be forfeit if an account is closed before accrued dividends are credited.