Archive for December, 2008

Have a Happy New Year!

Hope everyone has a safe and happy New Year.

All American 1 branches will be closed tomorrow. We’ll reopen at our normal hours on Friday, Jan. 2.

Bad economy sees increase in bad behavior

When the economy suffers, so do people’s ethics, it seems.

A recent story in the New York Times reports that shoplifting, especially around the holidays, is on the increase:

Police departments across the country say that shoplifting arrests are 10 percent to 20 percent higher this year than last. The problem is probably even greater than arrest records indicate since shoplifters are often banned from stores rather than arrested.

This time of year is also a peak time for online and e-mail fraud.

At American 1, we are very vigilant in looking out for “secret shopper” and foreign-country lottery scams. As always, if something sounds too good to be true, it usually is.

Be aware of where you keep your checkbook, debit card, and credit card. “Crimes of opportunity” – thefts where a thieve is in the right place at the right time – are also on the rise, meaning your pocketbook or wallet could be at risk.

If your banking or personal information is ever stolen, or if you become a victim of an online scam, alert your local police department. Then contact your financial institutions, like American 1. Look for more tips and resources to fight ID theft at our ScamWatch page.

American 1 holiday hours

Just a reminder – American 1 branches are closing early tomorrow, Christmas Eve, at 1 p.m. On Thursday, Christmas day, all branches will be closed for the holiday. We’ll reopen at our normal hours on Friday, Dec. 26.

Have a safe and merry Christmas, and a very happy holiday!

Let it snow.

Jackson, MI snow storm

Here’s the scene on Friday, Dec. 19 at 9 a.m. looking down East Michigan Ave. in Jackson.

Lots of schools closed, lots of plow trucks out, and a weirdly empty parking lot at the American 1 Home Office.

Emergency Snow Route

“All the smart folks stayed home,” one co-worker said. That could be.

Be safe out there!

Chrysler added to ‘Invest in America’ program

Good news – Chrysler is joining GM in the “Invest in America” program that offers Midwestern credit unions discounts on new vehicle purchases. American 1 members can use “Credit Union Member Cash” to purchase a discounted Chrysler or Dodge vehicle, says

All eligible current and new credit union members in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee can receive up to $1,000 in bonus cash incentives, depending on which model you choose. Plus, the Credit Union Member Cash program can be combined with most current incentives to add to your savings!

The discounts extend through June 30, 2009. Since you have to get financed through a local credit union, you can get pre-approved before you head out to shop.

Head to for more details.

ScamWatch: beware fraud text messages

We recently received word from another credit union that members are receiving fraud text messages citing “unusual account activity.” These text messages provided an 800 number, where members were asked to verify three pieces of information linked to their account to “restore their credit or debit card.” And then it asks them to enter their 16-digit credit or debit card number.

Folks, this is a scam. Credit unions will not alert you via text message when something is wrong with your account. If you ever receive something like this, be sure to double-check the given phone number against our own: (888) 213-2848 or (517) 787-6510. And please, don’t ever enter your credit or debit card number to just anyone. Check and double-check each request for financial information. It could save you a bundle.

American 1 Federal Credit Union