We Did It! Credit Unions Say $4.5 Billion in Savings Transferred from Big Banks in Last Month

The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) announced on November 3 that hundreds of thousands of bank customers have switched to credit unions in the last month, far outpacing the normal number of monthly transfers:

Based on the responses of a nationwide survey of 5,000 credit unions, CUNA estimates that at least 650,000 consumers across the nation have joined credit unions since September 29 (the day Bank of America unveiled its now-rescinded $5 monthly debit card fee). Also during that time, CUNA estimates that credit unions have added $4.5 billion in new savings accounts, likely from the new members and existing members shifting their funds.

The survey results also show that more than four in every five credit unions experiencing member growth since September  29 attributed the growth to consumer reaction to new fees imposed by banks, or a combination of consumer reactions to the new bank fees plus the social media-inspired “Bank Transfer Day,” November 5. “Bank Transfer Day” urges consumers to transfer their accounts from banks to credit unions by Saturday, November 5.

The $4.5 billion figure does not include new funds transferred since November 3rd, and it doesn’t include the value of the money that has been transferred to community banks. The total figure could be well over $6 billion.

The same press release also announced that more than 650,000 new credit union accounts have been created since September 29.

Bank Transfer Day was launched by an activist in Los Angeles named Kristen Christian who was upset with Bank of America’s “ridiculous fees and poor customer service.” She started a Facebook page to promote it, and it grew from there. Occupy Boston and other Occupy groups around the country have ceaselessly promoted Bank Transfer Day since the start of the Occupy movement.

You can read the full CUNA press release here.