Bank Transfer Day, a nationwide grassroots movement that favors smaller financial institutions, worked out well for Bethpage Federal Credit Union.
It took place last Saturday, capping a week in which Bethpage added $100 million in new deposits and opened 1,471 new bank accounts, compared with 383 new accounts during the same week a year ago.
(Separately, Teachers Federal Credit Union also had a great week, Newsday reported Tuesday.)
The credit union added 672 accounts in a single day, Saturday. The day was observed nationwide as Bank Transfer Day, part of a movement away from larger institutions that activists say are too expensive and inflexible. Bethpage and other credit unions pledged to never charge fees for newly opened checking accounts.
“Bethpage Federal Credit Union experienced an unprecedented, record-breaking spike in business in response to the Bank Transfer Day nationwide boycott,” Kirk Kordeleski, chief executive of Bethpage, said in a Tuesday news release.
“Bank Transfer Day provided frustrated consumers the opportunity to leverage their voices, realizing the valuable options credit unions offer, and until the mega banks eliminate all new monthly checking account fees, consumers' frustration and discontent will continue.”
Assessing the past week's impact on the industry, the Credit Union National Association said about 650,000 customers made new deposits of $4.5 billion while joining U.S. credit unions in October, after Bank of America announced plans to charge a $5 monthly debit card fee.
Bethpage, a not-for-profit financial cooperative with more than $4 billion in assets, had a $100-million increase in deposits since Sept. 29 representing a 149 percent increase from the same period last year, Kordeleski said.
Photo: Bethpage Federal Credit Union chief executive Kirk Kordeleski