In recent years, credit unions have been broadening their Field of Membership qualifications, making it easier for interested individuals to join. Are there truly credit unions that offer access for all?
Studies show locally owned businesses are a primary source of net new job creation. Yet independent businesses in many sectors are losing market share, while the number of new startups has steadily fallen over the last two decades. Insufficient capital is a key culprit driving these trends.
The faster the action to stop or slow down the trolls, the better -- to ensure that consumers, including credit union members, don't lose access to convenient services, or even their favorite small financial institutions.
The cost of a merchant data breach -- whether it is at a large national merchant or a local merchant -- can be significant for credit unions of all sizes. Because of credit unions' cooperative structure, the cost of such breaches are ultimately borne by credit union members.
To see a television advertisement for a business offering payday loans is to see payday loans advertised as a lifeline: a way for a financially strapped family to cover an unexpected expense. But that's not actually how most payday loans are used.
There was something almost apocalyptic about 2013. But much happened that was hopeful this year -- a new pope focused on inequality, successful minimum wage campaigns spread across the country, and the number of states allowing gay marriage doubled.
NAFCU urges Congress to make the issue of data security a priority in 2014 and enforce a stricter standard on merchants and retailers to protect consumers from breaches that compromise their financial and personal information.
This is just another example of the banks putting their self-interest ahead of consumers and our nation. If the credit union tax exemption were to be eliminated, the repercussions on our economy and consumers would be catastrophic.
Poorly thought-out government regulations can do tremendous harm. To date, the Republican Party's efforts against them have been heavy on bluster and light on action. By thinking bigger and thinking smaller, however, there's a good chance that the GOP could move forward with real regulatory reform.
The lessons from this event underscore some of the rules of business today -- rules that echo basic tenets of trust and good, old-fashioned customer service. Simply put, customer relationships do not begin and end at the transaction.
Many credit unions today offer the services, access and convenience of large banks, but in a decidedly consumer-friendly way, and with the kind of roots in their local communities that comes from being member-owned cooperatives.
What are some of the other advantages of credit unions? People before profits. At credit unions, members are owners and have a say in how it is operated. The "profits" go to members in the form of lower fees and better rates.