Credit unions continue to grow at a breath-taking pace. In just
the first three months, assets for credit unions larger than $50
million grew 5.2%. It's no surprise that fueling the strong asset
growth was 5.6% quarterly share growth. In this type of rapid-growth
environment, many credit unions are passing asset milestones, and
the results show they are doing it safely.
Fifteen credit unions topped $500 million in the first quarter
of 2002, raising the total number of credit unions above this mark
to 180. Credit unions new to this group were able to reach this
landmark, not solely through an influx of shares, but through strong
growth across the board. They increased both their assets and shares
by 7% in the first quarter, out-performing the already high industry
average in both categories. But where the credit union industry
struggled with lending in the first quarter, only growing 1%, these
fifteen credit unions' loans grew 3.5% during the same period.
Amid all this growth, these credit unions maintained their safe
footing. They kept their Net Worth to Asset Ratio at solid levels
averaging 10.2%. Helping Net Worth keep pace with the fast-growing
asset denominator was a 1.08% ROA that scored just above the 1.06%
industry average. These credit unions aren't just reaching milestones;
they're demonstrating how to safely maintain high growth levels.