Operations

Business Continuity: Test and Verify

November 23, 2009
Patrick Totty Not testing your business continuity plan is the same as not having one.   Ronald Reagan was fond of quoting a Russian proverb to Mikhail Gorbachev whenever the two negotiated an arms reduction treaty: “Doveryai, no proveryai!” or “Trust, but verify!” His advice also applies to business continuity... READ MORE

Board Dynamics

November 23, 2009
William Brown Is your board actively seeking a variety of viewpoints? Focus Develop a board culture that promotes diversity. Encourage structures that reinforce diversity. Board focus: Boards that fail to recruit outside their social circles put themselves at a competitive disadvantage. Wherever crowds of people gather, you’ll find proof of... READ MORE

Tech Leaders Help CUs Battle Recession

November 23, 2009
Top priorities are improving operating efficiency, cutting costs, and preserving the member experience. Rudy Pereira and Jackie Buchanan Focus Automation of rote tasks lets employees shift from pushing buttons to enhancing operations. Integration enables applications to exchange data behind-the-scenes so users request information and access tools in a seamless environment.... READ MORE

Rising Above 6%

November 23, 2009
CUs have held 6% of industry assets for nearly  two decades. Why not more? Dick Radtke Focus CUs’ share of assets among federally insured financial institutions has stalled at 6% since 1992. Alternative capital, some say, could help CUs gain additional market share. Board focus: Is share of assets a... READ MORE

Opportunity of a Lifetime

November 23, 2009
Steve Rodgers, editor in chief Large banks’ unconscionable practices set the competitive stage for CUs. It’s too bad we’re so focused on earnings because we’re missing a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. That was the opinion of a credit union CEO I spoke with at the National Credit Union Roundtable last spring. He... READ MORE

Fed Issues Final Overdraft Rule

October 30, 2009
The Federal Reserve Board issued a final rule that will require credit unions and other financial institutions to obtain a consumer's affirmative consent (“opt-in”) before charging overdraft fees for ATM and one-time debit transactions. The proposal was issued in January and compliance will not be required until July 1,... READ MORE

Protect Senior Members from Scams

October 27, 2009
By James Hanson Exploitation happens every day and in many different markets, including new immigrants, minorities, poorly educated, and the poor. But the senior market stands out because of its size and its relative wealth. Seniors are vulnerable for many reasons: * Cognition . Nearly half of the people in... READ MORE

'U-Shaped' Economic Recovery Calls for Barbell Strategies

October 27, 2009
Thompson : Know how to position your investments in a slow, U-shaped recovery. In a “U-shaped” recovery, interest rates can remain low for an extended period of time, says Greg Thompson, a financial advisor at SWBC Wealth Management , San Antonio. During such recoveries, “barbell” strategies that use the short- and... READ MORE

Avoid Below-Grade Investments

October 27, 2009
Many of Members Trust Co.’s clients have turned to agency mortgage backed securities and corporates, says John Largent, chief investment strategist for the Tampa, Fla.-based company. He notes that, depending on a credit union’s charter, corporate bonds may or may not be an allowable investment. CU Mag: How should CUs... READ MORE

Take a Balanced Investment Approach

October 27, 2009
Meier : Contraction or extension risk can lead to a potential asset-liability mismatch. Edward Meier suggests managing a blend of short- and long-term investments to guard against unexpected market movements. He’s a portfolio manager in the Fixed Income Division of MEMBERS Capital Advisors , the registered investment advisor affiliate of... READ MORE

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