Nov. 27, 2006


  • I also disagree that we are giving no thought to why we exist. Funny how the article or the comments neglect to cite increased regulatory burden as a contributing factor to mergers in addition to the inability of our lndustry to effect change to allow credit unions, especially smaller undersized credit unions to raise secondary captal. As an ex-banker and CEO of a small credit union that inherited a credit union with marginal capital, it is definately a challenge to have to increase capital solely through earnings while remaining true to the credit union mantra of offering better rates and fees and balance growth and earnings without a proper mechanism within the regulatory framework to allo for this.
    Stephen Bentley
  • I would disagree that we are giving no thought to why Credit Unions exist. Credit Unions are looking for ways to be able to continue to serve their members changing financial needs. Smaller credit unions are being pressured from all sides, therefore merging with someone else becomes a viable option to serving their members and providing more options to compete..
  • We're on track to a record breaking year for mergers. While the intent behind mergers are often sold to members as being beneficial, it seems we're just repeating the gobbling up nature of bank world. Are we a few short years away from a nationwide credit union a la Bank of America? Again, it just seems like we're copying the business models of banks without thought back to the reasons credit unions were founded -- to serve as an alternative to banks!
  • To my friend the ex-banker - one of reasons for our tax exemption is because credit unions must raise all capital via earnings. Regulatory burden - huh? Go low-income and get free money from grants, raise secondary capital, non-member deposits, and opportunity to grow FOM. NCUA Rules and Regualtions are our friend on this one. Mergers happen because of the lack of strategic planning.
  • This discussion is very interesting and timely, becuase when a group of us CEO do a roundtable on a quarterly basis, the merger question is the first thng that comes up. If it's about serving the member, it continues to be more challenging al all levels to do this and meet the regulatory issues, increaseing expenses, margin squeeze, etc., etc. Are the members being truly served by small credit unions that can't "afford" to raise saving/CD rates because expenses are too highor or they lack the sophistication to provide the products and services their members need? What are we providing to the members with many of us over 10% net worth? I am in a smaller CU and its a challenge every day, but I look forward to it.