Sharp divide between large and small credit unions in PPP lending

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Just two of the top 20 credit unions that issued loans through the Paycheck Protection Program have assets under $1 billion, but those two institutions made enough PPP loans to equal 20% or more of their total loan volumes.

New analysis from S&P Global Market Intelligence ranks the top 20 credit unions for PPP loans. The Small Business Administration closed the program on Aug. 8 and S&P compiled its data on Aug. 17 using second-quarter call reports from the National Credit Union Administration.

Leading the pack were Mountain America Credit Union in Sandy, Utah, with $346.8 million in PPP loans and nearly $11 billion in assets, followed by the $1.3 billion-asset Greater Nevada CU in Carson City, which had $185.2 million in PPP loans.

Third on the list was Indiana-based Notre Dame FCU, with about $940 million in assets and $179.6 million in PPP loans, or 24.44% of its total loans. Among those under $1 billion, Moline, Ill.-based Vibrant CU reported $152 million in PPP loans, or 20% of its total loans.

Many of the nation’s largest credit unions were not among the top 20 PPP lenders. Only four institutions on the list, including Navy Federal and BECU, have assets of more than $10 million.

With just under 7,000 loans, Mountain America was the busiest credit union PPP lender, followed by Navy Federal, with 5,157 loans. Four CUs on the list had fewer than 1,000 PPP loans, and Technology Credit Union had just 436 loans, though those totaled just over $99 million.

Not surprisingly, credit unions' PPP loan volumes pale in comparison with some of the nation’s largest banks. JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, PNC, Truist Financial and Wells Fargo are the five biggest lenders, according to S&P, accounting for more than $91 billion in loans as of Aug. 8. Through the end of June, credit unions as an industry originated about $8.34 billion, according to the firm.

Some credit unions have joined the ranks of other PPP lenders by opting to sell off those loans rather than keep them on the books.

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