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

Spotlight: Amy Stanton, Connex CU

October 27, 2009
Who : Amy Stanton What : Assistant vice president of marketing Where : Connex CU , North Haven, Conn. Why is the CU movement exciting? Credit unions offer a better choice for personal financial services. A lot of us work extremely hard to help consumers understand the difference between credit... READ MORE

Economic Indicators Aid Investment Decisions

October 27, 2009
By Judy Dahl As credit union investment portfolio managers struggle to balance risk and return, certain economic indicators aid in their decisions. “Unemployment rate, payroll statistics, consumer confidence indicators, inventory and sales data, interest-rate trends, equity markets, and banking industry trends, provide information to help make decisions regarding investment types... READ MORE

Indemnification: What Every CU Director Should Know

October 27, 2009
By John Wallace Volunteer boards of directors have been a pillar of the U.S. credit union movement for 100 years. But in today’s increasingly litigious society, more directors find themselves the targets of lawsuits—possibly putting their personal assets at risk. To offset this trend, numerous laws allow for indemnification of... READ MORE

SAC FCU's All-Loan Approach

October 27, 2009
By Judy Dahl Rather than investing, $379 million asset SAC Federal Credit Union , Bellevue, Neb., relies solely on loans to maximize income. As a result, the credit union’s loan-to-share ratio is 114%, reports Steve Ames, SAC Federal’s senior vice president of finance. “We have borrowings from the Federal Home... READ MORE

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