BECU, the fourth largest credit union in the country with $6.8 billion in assets, recorded 19% annual share growth through the 3rd quarter. The Seattle-based credit union attracted $958 million in new shares. Although most of the growth was in share certificates,regular shares and money market shares also posted significant increases.
Share certificates jumped 67% to $1.7 billion while money market shares jumped 56% to $1.4 billion. These numbers reflect the realization of an initiative we started in ’04 that focused on returningmore value to our members. Steps we took two years back freed up resources that allowed us to enhance the spread over the competition, said Brad Canfield, CFO of BECU.
By focusing on cost cutting and eliminating inefficiencies, BECU was able to offer deposit rates up to 80 bps above Washington state averages and therefore attracted significant deposits.
Loan growth also continued to fortify the balance sheet. Total loans grew 22% to $5.6 billion, with real estate loans growing 16% to $3.0 billion and auto loans growing 33% to $1.8 billion.
According to Canfield, indirect auto lending generating around $100 million a month in originations, coupled with unwavering focus on the home equity market, drove BECU’s loan portfolio growth. Enhancing efficiencies has been a focus in lendingas well, as the credit union has simplified in-house processes to drive down costs and offer competitive prices. For example, BECU shortened the approval time for HELOCs by removing multiple redundant forms and significantly reducing paperwork.
BECU’s total assets grew 17% to $6.8 billion while membership jumped 10% from a year ago.
Net Income Grows Despite Higher Costs of Funds
The solid balance sheet growth is matched by equally good growth on the income statement. Total income for the nine months ending September 2006 grew 26% to $323 million versus thesame period last year, thanks mainly to 30% growth in loan income.
While expenses grew a modest 4%, dividends jumped 74%, pushing the average cost of funds from 2.2% to 3.1%. Net income grew 6% over the previous September.
|30-Sep-05||30-Sep-06||12 month growth|
|Assets||$5.8 B||$6.8 B||16.7%|
|Shares||$5.0 B||$6.0 B||19.0%|
|Loans||$4.6 B||$5.6 B||22.3%|
|Loan Income||$181.2 M||$236.0 M||30.2%|
|Fee Income||$51.5 M||$55.9 M||8.4%|
|Total Income||$256.6 M||$323.4 M||26.0%|
|Direct Expenses||$109.9 M||$114.1 M||3.9%|
|Ave Cost of Funds||2.20%||3.10%|
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