Login to View Full Member Content:

CURRENT Newsletter | 16 January 2014

Jan 16, 2014 by Lewis Wood

News and Information For and About Virginia's Credit Union System

Headline News

News About Credit Unions

Governmental Affairs News

Financial Services/Marketplace News

News From Credit Unions

News About The Competition

Headline News

Aid Our Advocacy Mission: Report Your Micro-Lending Initiatives

Credit unions: We're again collecting your micro-loan data through our Reality Check survey. We're asking you to report information on loans you've made of $3,000 or less, excluding credit cards, for Calendar Year 2013.

Please give us a hand and provide this data, which we use to support our advocacy efforts!

Report your aggregate micro-loan data at this web address (short seven-question survey!): Online Survey

> We would also love to share your stories about members helped by your small loans. Photos of the members you've helped would also be appreciated! Email them to pr@vacul.org
>> We have a downloadable version of the survey as well! (PDF, 267kb)

back to top

League Seeks Candidates for Board of Directors; Nominations Due By Jan. 27

The Governance Committee of the Virginia Credit Union League seeks your recommendations for candidates to be nominated for election to the Board of Directors. In 2014, five board seats are open. Listed below are the positions slated for election:

  • Region II Director (Richmond and Southside Chapters) – Seat representing credit unions with less than $50 million in assets
  • Region II Director (Richmond and Southside Chapters) – Seat representing credit unions with $50 million or more in assets
  • Region III Director (Central Virginia and NoVA Chapters) – Seat representing credit unions with less than $50 million in assets
  • Two At-Large Director Seats

[learn more about the nomination process]

back to top

Credit Union Days at the General Assembly; Full Week of Lawmaker Visits

We're prepared for a big week in Richmond beginning next Tuesday when the Hampton Roads and Tidewater chapters kick off our annual CU Days at the General Assembly. The full schedule is posted below. Hope to see you in Richmond!

  • Jan. 21: Tidewater, Hampton Roads
  • Jan. 22: Central Virginia, Richmond, Roanoke Valley, Southwestern Va.
  • Jan. 23: Southside, Lynchburg, Piedmont
  • Feb. 5: NoVA

We have no big issues this session, but we are asking credit unions to provide the CU Day attendees with information showing how they demonstrate the Credit Union Difference and how we earn our tax exemption each and every day!.

The League will provide scarves for legislators and a packet of general information on credit unions.

Please notify Karin Sherbin at ksherbin@vacul.org or 434.237.9626 of the headcount for your chapter’s CU Day group today so we can line up lunch!

back to top

Congressional Luncheon Feb. 26; Registration Now Open

Protect the credit union movement and promote our legislative agenda by attending the Feb. 26 Congressional Luncheon in Washington, D.C., held in conjunction with CUNA’s Governmental Affairs Conference.

[learn more and  register for the Luncheon]
[learn more and  register for the GAC]

back to top

Hefty Bank Fees Waylay Soldiers

The Wall Street Journal features an investigative story on fees charged by the financial institutions serving  military bases. Although credit unions weren't part of the Journal analysis, Navy Federal is mentioned in the article. Some of the banks near military bases raked in huge fees.

At Fort Hood National Bank, for example, service charges were 6.8% of funds on deposit and averaged $328 per account, the Journal analysis found. Bank of America's fees nationwide were 0.5% of deposits and averaged $82 per account. Navy Federal's filings show its fees were 1% of deposits and averaged $44 per account.
[See the Journal story here] (subscription required)

back to top

CFPB Seeking CU Advisory Board Applications

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said Wednesday it is seeking applications for its Credit Union Advisory Council. Positions are for two years and cannot be renewed.

It is estimated the Council will meet four times a year for sessions ranging from 90 minutes to a full working day. There is no pay and travel expenses are not reimbursed, but members may attend by phone. For more information and how to apply, click here.

back to top

Deadline Jan. 24 for Submitting 2013 Donations to CMN Hospitals

If you have not already done so, please send in your Credit Unions for Kids (CMN Hospitals) fundraising dollars as soon as possible: Jan. 24 is the deadline. Simply submit this form (which includes mailing instructions) along with your fundraising check.

Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals requests credit unions send their funds directly to the CMN Hospitals’ Corporate Accounting Department where an accounting team carefully reviews the form you send with your check, notes that the funds came from your credit union and records the type of fundraiser(s) you held.

Every single dollar you submit will be returned to your local hospital from the corporate office on a quarterly basis along with a detailed report of the credit unions who submitted the funds.

back to top

News About Credit Unions

Dot-Credit Union Domain Name About To Get Green Light: CUNA

CUNA expects approval of the Internet domain name .creditunion (dot credit union) by the worldwide Internet Corporation for Names and Numbers, known as ICANN, anytime now. "As far as we know, ICANN is satisfied with our application and we are expecting approval any day now," said CUNA General Counsel Eric Richard.

CUNA said that claiming the .creditunion name will provide a good marketing tool for credit unions and CU-related organizations, as well as prevent non-credit union entities from using it. (Credit Union Journal, Jan. 14)

back to top

Governmental Affairs News

House Financial Services Will Have Data Security Hearings, Chairman Says

Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas), who heads the House Financial Services Committee, said his panel will conduct hearings to study how government agencies and financial institutions secure data they collect, reported Politic Pro. He did not tie the hearings, however, specifically to the recent data breach at Target. The article noted that Democrats on Hensarling's committee have asked the chairman to schedule a hearing to study the breach at Target.

The Credit Union National Association has reached out to House Financial Services and Senate Banking Committee leaders, encouraging them to "fully examine the chronic issue of merchant data breaches, their impact on consumers and financial institutions." The Target data breach compromised at least 70 million debit and credit cards and included stolen encrypted PIN data.

[read more]

back to top

House Subcommittee Examines QM Rule

Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WVa.), chairman of the House Financial Services subcommittee on financial institutions and consumer credit, said at a Tuesday hearing that she is concerned that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's Qualified Mortgage regulation takes a "one-size-fits-all approach" that will "severely hamper the ability of community lenders to tailor products to borrowers." "No two borrowers have the same credit profile," Capito noted during her subcommittee's hearing titled, "How Prospective and Current Homeowners Will Be Harmed by the CFPB's Qualified Mortgage Rule."

The Credit Union National Association submitted a statement for the hearing record, calling for credit unions to be exempt from new Ability to Repay/Qualified Mortgage (ATR/QM) rules and stating that the CFPB has the legal authority to provide an exemption from the ATR/QM rule.

[read more]

back to top

Financial Services/Marketplace News

US Economy Gets Head of Steam; Seen Growing as Expected, Fed Says

The U.S. economy continued to grow at a moderate pace from late November through the end of 2013, with some regions of the country expecting a pick-up in growth, the Federal Reserve said on Wednesday.

In its Beige Book report of anecdotal information on business activity collected from contacts nationwide, the U.S. central bank said two-thirds of the 12 districts reported increases in hiring. "The economic outlook is positive in most districts, with some reports citing expectations for 'more of the same' and some expecting a pick-up in growth,'' the report said.

[read more]

back to top

As Refinancing Wanes, Banks Are Wary of New Loans

The stars seem to be aligning in the housing market. Home prices have been rising for many months, and the federal government is providing immense support to bolster the mortgage market.

The big banks that make home loans are strong enough to provide credit to borrowers, as seen in the fourth-quarter results reported Tuesday by JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo. Yet despite the confluence of promising signs, little in the vast system that provides Americans with mortgages has returned to normal since the 2008 financial crisis, leaving a large swath of people virtually shut out of the market.

[read more]

back to top

Congress Unveils Spending Measure to Fund U.S. Government

House and Senate lawmakers agreed to a bipartisan compromise to fund the U.S. government through Sept. 30, unveiling the measure days before financing for federal agencies is scheduled to lapse. The $1.01 trillion measure would fund the troubled health care law and individual agencies, plus add separate war financing to bring the total to $1.1 trillion.

Republican efforts to derail some regulatory initiatives were left out of the measure to ensure passage and avoid a repeat of the 16-day partial government shutdown in October.

[read more]

back to top

Subprime Auto Market Heats Up, Loan Standards Weaken: Moody's

Auto lenders are making more loans to weaker borrowers as consumer demand for cars increases and low interest rates continue to fatten profit margins, according to a Moody's report released Friday.

The Moody's report, which analyzes third-quarter data compiled by Experian, also found ample evidence for weakening lending standards in the subprime auto loan market. Banks increased subprime auto loans by 1% in the third quarter, while credit unions saw a 9% gain.

[read more]

back to top

News From Credit Unions

Financial Session Held for Senate Pages

Virginia Credit Union conducted a financial education session on Monday for students who are serving as pages and messengers in the Virginia Senate. The session was led by Cherry Hedges, financial education director at the Chesterfield County-based credit union. The students were challenged to construct a monthly budget based on the expected salaries of randomly assigned careers as short-order cooks, child-care workers, legal secretaries, mail carriers and physicians.

[read more]

back to top

News About The Competition

Needham Bank Adds Book-a-Banker Feature to Website

Needham Bank announced Tuesday an update to its website that lets consumers book appointments with in-branch bankers. It's part of a bid to make the Massachusetts community bank more accessible.

"We're a 1.2 billion unapologetic quintessential community bank," says Eric Morse, first vice president of marketing and retail sales at Needham Bank. "We are trying to be very competitive and technology plays an enormous role in that." So far, the community bank has made 12 in-branch bankers available for bookings through the software. (American Banker Online, Jan. 15)

back to top

Wells Pledges Decision on Deposit Advances Soon

Within the next few months, Wells Fargo (WFC) expects to decide whether to continue offering a controversial consumer loan product that has come into regulators' crosshairs, Chief Financial Officer Timothy Sloan said Tuesday. The company's Direct Deposit Advance bears a strong resemblance to a payday loan. Customers get charged $1.50 for every $20 they borrow, with full repayment usually due within no more than 35 days.

In late November, federal banking regulators placed stringent new restrictions on such loan products — for example, requiring banks to evaluate each borrower's ability to repay without rolling the loan over.

That requirement that would likely disqualify many of today's customers, industry observers have said. Only six banking companies currently offer so-called deposit advances, and just four of them — Wells Fargo, U.S. Bancorp (USB), BOK Financial (BOKF), and Guaranty Bank of Wisconsin — are subject to the new guidance from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (American Banker Online, Jan. 15)

> back to top

Comments

Add New Comment