Resist Regulatory Fear Of Mortgages

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MADISON, Wis.-Credit unions need to resist the fear of becoming the next s&l crisis.

"Credit unions are not savings & loans. We're not talking about an industry with 80% to 90% of their portfolio in 30-year fixed mortgages," said CUNA Economist Mike Schenk. "To the extent that the opportunity is there and they have the expertise, credit unions should not shy away from mortgages. They need to resist some of the regulatory pressure to avoid this stuff."

And a very conservative, risk-averse industry is going to have to learn to be a little more comfortable with managing risk. "If you're going to pursue that market, you're going to have to be willing to take on more risk," Schenk noted. "And if you're going to take on more risk, you have to be in a good position to monitor, measure and control that risk."

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