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Bank customers get better CD rates

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Highlights
  • Banks range from giants like Wachovia to small community banks.
  • Calculate the cost of moving your account to be sure it's worth the effort.
  • Internet banks may also offer better CD rates than regular banks.

Looking for better CD rates? Sign up for a checking account.

Some banks and credit unions are giving a little extra boost on CD rates to checking account customers. And in such a dismal rate environment, every little bit helps.

Take Wachovia, for example. Wachovia pays 0.6 percent on an 18-month CD and 0.7 percent on a 24-month CD. Wachovia checking account customers are eligible for slighter sweeter deals, 1 percent on a 19-month CD and 1.64 percent on a 25-month CD as long as they make a minimum deposit of $5,000. 

And plenty of smaller, community banks and credit unions are rewarding checking account customers with higher CD rates as well.

Checking account customers at United Central Bank in Dallas are eligible for a special year-end bonus CD. This 14-month CD, paying 2 percent annual percentage yield, requires a minimum deposit of $1,000.

Cecil Bank, a community bank serving Cecil and Harford counties in Maryland, is paying 2.25 percent APY on any CD with terms of 12 months and less for its checking account customers. This CD special requires a minimum deposit of just $500.

At PrimeWay Federal Credit Union in Houston, premier checking and elite checking account customers receive an additional 25 basis points on any of the credit union's certificates of deposit with a minimum deposit of $500. 

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"We are a firm believer in giving those members who use us as their primary financial institution the best rate," Michelle Oshinski, vice president of marketing at PrimeWay Federal Credit Union, explained in an e-mail.

So if you've been a longtime checking account customer with a bank or credit union, keep your eyes peeled for CD specials targeted especially to you.

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