Community Outreach Efforts

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CU Outlines Savings It Provides

BURNSVILLE, Minn.-US Federal Credit Union (USFCU) members on average saved $2,313 last year just by doing business with the open-to-the-public, Burnsville-based financial.

On top of regularly boasting high marks in safety and soundness as well as member satisfaction, a recent study by CUNA rated the overall value provided to members of the cooperative. The survey showed that USFCU saved its members $9,678,911 in 2010 simply because they chose USFCU over other local financial institutions. Savings came in the form of lower loan rates, higher deposit rates and fewer and lower fees offered by the federally insured, not-for-profit financial institution.

As Minnesota's first financial cooperative, the brick and mortar of US Federal Credit Union (USFCU) is its membership and their 'not for profit, not for charity, but for service' philosophy. President/CEO Bill Raker notes his excitement about giving back:

"I am overjoyed that we were able to save our members as much as we had this past year. It is so important to US Federal that we remember and reward those that have been a part of our community and our credit union family. Our members have figured out how to best benefit from us, though-the more they utilize our products and services, the more they save. We are excited to see this trend continue and look forward to providing even greater value in the years to come."

To take advantage of the great product and service offerings available from US Federal Credit Union, visit one of their eight Twin Cities locations or their website,


CUs' Prove Worth To Consumers

LANSING, Mich.-Michigan's credit unions are reporting growth in members and branches, according to the Michigan Credit Union League. Using the most recent call report data, the league said that deposits activity also remains strong, especially in checking accounts. Among the data from Q1:

* Deposit growth was up 15.6 % (quarter growth annualized) compared to 6.4% in the fourth quarter of 2010.

* Michigan credit unions' free checking accounts grew by 22% (quarter growth annualized) while typically lower-balance savings accounts grew by a very significant 41.6% (quarter growth annualized) compared to 7.2% in the fourth quarter of 2010.

* The number of people employed by credit unions in Michigan grew by 193 to 12,814 compared to 12,621 one year prior, while branches grew also from 1,044 to 1,064 over the same period.

* Small business lending has continued to grow. The league reported that small business loans surpassed $1 billion for the first time with growth of 10.7% (quarter growth annualized) compared to a similar growth rate of 9.6% in the fourth quarter of 2010.

* Total credit union membership continued to grow to 4,474,241, up 42,000 from March 31, 2010, one year prior, despite the state's shrinking population. "Michigan continues to enjoy the highest membership/population penetration (45%) of any of the 10% most populous states in the U.S." the league said.

"Consumers continue to see credit unions as a trusted, safe haven for their money despite the low-interest environment," says David Adams, CEO of the Michigan Credit Union League & Affiliates. "The growth in checking accounts, total membership and small business loans is particularly gratifying."

* Net worth/total assets stood strong at 10.56%, off slightly from 10.72% in Dec. 31, 2010, due to the effect of strong deposit growth.

* Delinquent loans/total loans continued to improve with an overall delinquency rate of 1.60% compared to 1.75% in Dec. 31, 2010 and down from 1.82 percent at March 31, 2010. Similarly, net loan charge-off losses also continued trending downward to 0.92% compared to 1.19% in December and 1.17% one year earlier (March 31, 2010).

* Net earnings, expressed as a percentage of average assets (ROA) improved to .79%, up from .55% in December and up from .32% at March 31, 2010.

* Liquidity, expressed as the percentage of assets held in total loans loans-to-assets) stood at 55.3%, down from 58 % in December and 58.9% at March 31, 2010.


Members 'Like' E&A

PORT HURON, Mich.-In an example of a new-fangled solution to the ages-old community outreach efforts, E&A Credit Union has officially reached 1,000 "Likes" on Facebook, and has done so in less than a year. The $220-million CU launched a "Let's Bat 1,000" contest in which all members had to do was "like" the E&A Facebook page and, once it reached 1,000 likes, two members would be randomly drawn and would receive a pair of Detroit Tigers tickets.

The campaign followed the hiring of Megan Jones as youth marketing coordinator for E&A Credit Union; Jones was initially hired on as social media intern. "Creating a social media strategy was the first task that needed to be completed along with a large amount of research," said Jones. "The goal for E&A Credit union's Facebook was to create another gateway for members to communicate with the credit union."

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