A portion of earnings paid to the owners of a credit union or corporation. (A credit union’s owners are called members; a corporation’s owners are called shareholders. Credit unions and banks both pay savers a percentage of the money in their savings accounts. Credit unions call this payment a dividend because their members are, by definition, owners. Banks call this payment interest because their customers are not, by definition, owners. Bank dividends go to shareholders.) The board of directors decides what the dividend rate, or percentage, will be. Dividend payments are usually added directly to an account balance.