A message from the banking sector provides a ray of light contrary to gloom and doom forecasting.
Amid the gloom and doom of a declining stock market and a dip in consumer confidence, a message from the banking sector provides a ray of light. Asset quality at large financiers has improved so much over the past quarter that heavy hitter JP Morgan has released a significant portion of its loan loss reserves. The income-boosting action is a sign that loans are performing better than anticipated, and The New York Times calls the move an “encouraging sign that the wounds inflicted by the financial and economic crisis are healing.”
Such sentiments of healing come at an opportune time, as financial reform awaits the approval of President Obama. JP Morgan’s move has garnered a mixed reaction among financial analysts akin to the industry’s embracement of financial reform. Plenty of media attention goes to detractors, but financial reform has plenty of supporters, too. State Employees’ Credit Union of North Carolina views tightened legislation as a positive development that fights abusive practices and weeds out unscrupulous players, and Dave Serlo, the late president of PSCU Financial Services, saw legislation as an impetus for credit unions to continue their innovative approach of doing what’s right for members.
And credit unions ARE finding innovative ways to better serve their members. Whether it’s through commercial lending or patronage dividends (yes, even in today’s economic environment), cooperatives serve their owners by doing what’s right for their members. An innovative approach indeed.