Financial Performance

Return On Assets (ROA)

By William Hunt | May 17, 2021

The lasting effects of the COVID-19 pandemic — and the national economic response to it — linger on credit union financial statements.

By Aman Johal | April 19, 2021

Credit union earnings rebounded toward the end of the year as industry players find a way to adapt their business models to a changing economic landscape.

By Sam Taft | Jan. 11, 2021

Spread analysis deconstructs credit union earnings to gauge the health of an institution and its broader industry.


Is Your Inbox Missing Out?

Sign up for the free newsletter and be the first to read our newest coverage of credit union strategies and insights.

sign up today



By Michael Zelna | Dec. 14, 2020

Concerned with cooperative values and not stock prices, credit unions have sacrificed short-term earnings to bolster reserves and give members a break on fees.

By Michael Zelna | Dec. 14, 2020

Credit unions in the West reported the largest decline in ROA. See what else has happened across the United States.

By Aman Johal | Sept. 30, 2020

Due to economic lockdowns and government relief efforts, in the second quarter financial institutions had to develop creative strategies to generate revenue.

By William Hunt | June 30, 2020

A locked-down economy combined with volatile changes in monetary policy put lenders in a difficult position in the first quarter of 2020, as total revenue growth slowed as sources of income shifted away from interest-driven streams.

By Sam Taft | June 30, 2020

The longest economic expansionary period in U.S. history has come to an end. What else should credit unions know at first quarter?

By William Hunt | April 16, 2020

General uncertainty regarding the interest rate environment made it difficult for institutions to accurately price deposit and loan products, which is reflected in year-end income statements.

By Aman Johal | April 16, 2020

Despite a slow first quarter, the industry reported strong growth across core financials in the past 12 months. What else should credit unions know at fourth quarter?

By Samantha Cristobal | March 9, 2020

Mortgage lending helps drive the loan portfolio to new heights while membership engagement deepens at cooperatives over the decade following the Great Recession.

By Maya Neuman | Dec. 17, 2018

ROA for credit unions hit 0.96%. This is the highest it has been since the third quarter of 2003.

By Samantha Cristobal | Nov. 14, 2018

Test your knowledge of third quarter industry trends with this quiz on earnings by Callahan & Associates.

By Liz Furman | Dec. 11, 2017

It's taken for granted that small credit unions are more reliant on fee income. But are they really?

By Ian Melhorn | April 10, 2017

ROA increased 2 basis points for credit unions nationally, but where do the high and low performers fall?

By Liz Furman | Jan. 30, 2017

The national average for each of these six mighty metrics is less than 10 percentage points, but even a change of a few basis points can make a big difference to a credit union.

By Marc Rapport | Oct. 24, 2016

The small Oregon-Washington credit union uses internal efficiencies and external outreach to hit new heights.

By Michelle Parker | Oct. 10, 2016

How do credit unions in the Buckeye State stack up against regional peers?

By Liz Furman | Sept. 26, 2016

How do financial cooperatives in the Lone Star State stack up against other credit unions?

By Liz Furman | Aug. 19, 2016

Second quarter data shows the industry’s ROA is up quarter-over-quarter but slightly down year-over-year.

By Sam Taft | June 13, 2016

Lending and asset growth have been capturing industry headlines, but tight margins from sustained low interest rates and slowly rising operating expenses make some other benchmarks worth watching.

By Michelle Parker | June 13, 2016

Lending is the engine that powers credit unions, and these seven ratios will help every employee understand why.

By Liz Furman | April 18, 2016

Here’s how CUSOs and sales to secondary markets affect non-interest income.

By Marc Rapport | Feb. 22, 2016

Mountain America Credit Union is a veteran user of cash management analytics, but it’s still learning how to optimize its understanding of and confidence in the system.

By Stephanie Clark | Aug. 28, 2015

Credit unions reported 7.1% year-over-year growth in income, and that’s just the beginning.

By Sam Taft | June 22, 2015

Hard hit during the recession, the Sand States kickoff 2015 with a return to growth.

By Marc Rapport | March 9, 2015

Digital Federal Credit Union has been building member loyalty with direct deposit early paydays.

By Sam Taft | Feb. 23, 2015

These four performance metrics will help CFOs explain the business of credit unions and show how every employee helps the credit union achieve its goals.

By Janet Lee | Aug. 27, 2014

Income from loan and investments is the driving force behind the quarter’s 1.2% growth in total revenue.

By Janet Lee | April 14, 2014

Credit union executives need to know what questions to ask in different situations and understand the pros and cons of various ratios to best analyze the balance sheet.

By Jay Johnson | April 14, 2014

How to re-examine traditional benchmarking metrics and truly tell the credit union’s story.

By Andrew Bolton | Jan. 31, 2014

Callahan’s FirstLook data shows increased originations as consumer lending continues to gain ground in the portfolio.

By Andrew Bolton | Jan. 30, 2014

Callahan & Associates predicts the winner of Super Bowl XLVIII by analyzing credit union performance data.

By Callahan & Associates | Dec. 17, 2013

New York-based AmeriCU Credit Union launched teller kiosks and increased self-service transactions throughout its membership.

By Mark Reed | Nov. 22, 2013

Credit union performance in the Gem State reflects the cooperatives’ popularity.

By Janet Lee | Nov. 20, 2013

Credit unions increased the net interest margin by 2 basis points in 3Q13, marking the first time in three years that net interest margin rose from the previous quarter.

By Mark Reed | Nov. 11, 2013

What effects does a robust credit card portfolio have on a credit union's financial performance?

By Mark Reed | July 22, 2013

An examination of the planned merger of Pioneer and Capital credit unions in Wisconsin.

By Parth Kapoor | July 3, 2013

This Fourth of July, we want to thank our soldiers for their service while also commemorating the outstanding performance of those who serve their financial needs.

By Alix Patterson | July 1, 2013

Give employees the knowledge they need to think and act like the business partners they are.

By Mark Reed | May 20, 2013

By Alix Patterson | April 29, 2013

By Mark Reed | Nov. 19, 2012

Credit unions are increasing alternative sources of income and turning in an outstanding performance in the third quarter in face of historically low interest rates.

By Mark Reed | Nov. 19, 2012

By Andrew Bolton | Nov. 9, 2012

Initial third quarter data shows credit unions are not only adding members but also improving member relationships.

By Lydia Cole | Aug. 7, 2012

Credit unions excel in building the loan portfolio as well as member relationships.

By Andrew Bolton | July 27, 2012

Credit unions can weigh the value of indirect auto lending by comparing several financial metrics.

By Andrew Bolton | June 11, 2012

Net income soared 20% from the first quarter of 2011 as loan losses declined, according to first quarter 2012 data.

By Rebecca Wessler | Nov. 21, 2011

The largest credit union in the hard-hit Californian Inland Empire is building on the area’s economic revival.

By Andrew Bolton | Nov. 7, 2011

Continuing corporate credit unions are posting healthy financials amid a changing landscape.

By Lydia Cole | Oct. 1, 2011

Does your credit union Board and executive team understand the terms, definitions, formulas, and metrics they see on the balance sheet and income statement? Share this quiz at your next Board meeting or executive staff retreat.

By Callahan & Associates | Oct. 1, 2011

Here are four key metrics from American Flag Credit Union's two-year report. Use this credit union's performance to kick-start the dialogue with your Board members or management team about important performance indicators to watch.

By Lydia Cole | Aug. 15, 2011

Credit unions weather a turbulent economy in the first half of 2011 in many areas, Callahan & Associates' FirstLook data shows.

By Andrew Bolton | June 27, 2011

Increased loan originations and strong earnings show credit unions in this Sand State are far from sunk.

By Andrew Bolton | May 23, 2011

Credit unions in the Grand Canyon State are saving members’ homes and earning positive net income.

By Thomas Cullen | May 16, 2011

A Washington state credit union turns its diminutive size into a demonstrable advantage.

By Rebecca Wessler | May 9, 2011

Diligent oversight and superior rates help this Iowa credit union raise its ROM.

By Lydia Cole | April 29, 2011

Key metrics to evaluate your credit union and bridge the gap between macro trends and micro performance.

By Lydia Cole | April 18, 2011

Delinquency, return on assets, net worth to assets: Three metrics to evaluate your credit union and bridge the gap between macro trends and micro performance.

By Callahan & Associates | April 7, 2011

The top 10 credit union leaders in non-interest income as a percent of total income.

By Rebecca Wessler | Feb. 28, 2011

Near-record ROA. Loan growth. Addition of services. What the industry can learn from a Midwestern credit union.

By Alix Patterson | Feb. 28, 2011

As encouraging news bubbles up, credit unions continue to improve communities and the lives of members.

By Aaron Pugh | Feb. 7, 2011

A lesson in (controlled) aggression positions one $42 million credit union for a substantial year of growth in 2011.

By Lydia Cole | Feb. 7, 2011

Credit unions finished 2010 focused on three areas: asset quality, loan volume, and earnings.

By Rebecca Wessler | Jan. 24, 2011

Despite area challenges in unemployment and housing prices, the credit union has improved its net income, operating costs, and loan losses.

By Nick Connors | Dec. 2, 2010

More than $3.0 billion in net income and the highest third quarter loan originations volume in five years are just two reasons to celebrate.

By Aaron Pugh | Nov. 29, 2010

In offering financial stability to members today, the cooperative system positions itself for success tomorrow.

By Lydia Cole | Sept. 9, 2010

Quarterly provisioning for loan losses is at the lowest level in eight quarters.

By Nick Connors | Sept. 6, 2010

With solid earnings, strong deposit growth, and other successes, the 2Q Quarterly Report highlights industry trends as of June 2010.

By Alix Patterson | Aug. 23, 2010

FirstLook data shows regional changes in delinquency, charge-offs, and coverage ratios.

By Lydia Cole | Aug. 23, 2010

The state’s credit unions posted a pre-stabilization expense ROA of 0.15%, the first positive return since December 2007.

By Lydia Cole | Aug. 2, 2010

Initial industry figures for second quarter 2010 reflect improvements in the financial industry.

By Callahan & Associates | July 1, 2010

During the "Great Recession" credit unions outperformed banks in many areas.

By Callahan & Associates | July 1, 2010

Growing a credit card program is easy in this environment; implementing a program scorecard allows for prudent and profitable growth.

By Chip Filson | June 22, 2010

Signs of recovery are evident, but the need still remains. How can you fill it?

By Nick Connors | June 21, 2010

One-time expenses impacted earnings in 2009, but credit unions' ROA is back on the rise in 2010.

By Nick Connors | May 31, 2010

Whether it was the dollar amount, where on the call report to report it, or what quarter to record the expense, there is always uncertainty when tracking the NCUSIF Stabilization expense.

By Elliott Kashner | May 17, 2010

Significant improvements to credit unions’ income statements yielded a $1 billion increase in net income over first quarter 2009.

By Nick Connors | May 12, 2010

With over 7,500 credit unions reporting March data in our FirstLook program, the industry as a whole remains in the black for the fourth consecutive quarter.

By Callahan & Associates | May 11, 2010

Credit card profitability is under more pressure than ever, yet many credit unions don’t accurately report their program’s contribution to the bottom line.

By Aaron Pugh | May 10, 2010

California’s Arrowhead Credit Union shows a tenacious turnaround, making tough decisions, and running lean and mean in the recovering marketplace.

By Timothy Kolk | May 3, 2010

A combination of economic forces and regulatory changes has created the perfect storm for credit card issuers, resulting in seriously impaired profitability.

By Chris Tissue | April 1, 2010

This edition is brought to you straight from the corporate communities that use this holiday to have a little fun and show some personality. And from the letters C and U.

By Nick Connors | Oct. 26, 2009

Place your bets, because this article predicts the winner of this year’s World Series by conducting an analysis of credit union performance in Pennsylvania and New York.

By Cathie Tierney | June 29, 2009

A look back at Community First FCU's loan sale shows that the sale was successful in creating profitable loans and loyal new members.

By Scott Patterson | March 16, 2009

Credit unions are earning a great return while saving their members thousands of dollars over the life of a loan.

By Brooke C. Stoddard | Dec. 1, 2008

In the short-term, Mountain America's ROA plunges but the merger that caused it looks like a long-term winner.

By Bucky Sebastian | Dec. 1, 2008

GTE FCU was founded in 1935 as the credit union for the Peninsular Telephone Company. Headquartered in Tampa, GTE FCU is now the fourth largest credit union in Florida and with more than $2.1 billion in assets one of the largest 60 credit unions in the country. Unfortunately, Tampa was one of the first areas hit with the “credit crisis,” trouble in housing arriving in 2007.

By Sandy Andrews | Dec. 1, 2008

By 1979, the credit union had about $250 million in assets and served Caterpillar plants in the Peoria area, family members of members, and employees of 20 to 30 Caterpillar dealerships. Caterpillar Employees CU had about 84,000 members. Then the bottom fell out.

By Chip Filson | Nov. 3, 2008

NCUA’s proposed FY 2009 budget includes a $24.3 million increase, more than 110 new examiner hires, and an overall expenditure growth of 15.3%, requiring a double digit rise in the operating fee and a higher charge to the NCUSIF in the overhead transfer rate.

By Chip Filson | Oct. 27, 2008

This Golden Calf metaphor is a theme in literature and art. Consultants even use it to diagnose organizational performance. Is it possible in this time of economic stress, especially among troubled credit unions, that some are worshipping a false god, and that we have taken attention away from the true way out of our difficulties?

By Callahan & Associates | Oct. 1, 2008

Many credit unions are not looking at loan protfolios heavily populated with fixed-rate loans originated during a (fairly lengthy) period of historically low-term interest rates.

By Callahan & Associates | Oct. 1, 2008

The graphs in this section come courtesy of Card Services for Credit Unions. By using the CSCU portfolio as a proxy, we are able to infer trends that are having an impact on the credit union card portfolio as a whole.

By Chris Tissue | Sept. 8, 2008

The damage from the mortgage meltdown and credit crunch continues to impact bank income statements and balance sheets in 2008. Credit unions, on the other hand, continue to reap the combined benefits of their cooperative business model.

By LSI | Aug. 11, 2008

Auto recapture is one option to help your credit union increase its ROA.

By Chip Filson | July 28, 2008

As the housing and economic crisis continues, financial institutions are at the center of losses due to asset value declines. While both community banks and credit unions are experiencing some “spill over” losses on loans, each has different ways of responding to diminished capital levels.

By Lydia Cole | July 21, 2008

Revitalizing a static card portfolio requires careful due diligence to achieve success. Competing with the massive marketing budgets of large financial institutions, credit union must clearly understand their membership and respond promptly to member needs.

By Callahan & Associates | July 1, 2008

With gas and food prices, layoffs and buyouts up, consumers are recognizing the value of the cooperative model with membership topping 88.9 million and lending and share balances quickly growing.

By Nick Connors | June 16, 2008

While the average credit union ROA may have slipped in the first quarter of 2008, a little perspective can go a long way.

By Mike Valentine | June 2, 2008

2007 turned out to be a challenging year for net income.  A continuing margin squeeze coupled with a large increase in loan delinquencies and write-offs resulted in a strained ROA.

By Larry Sharp | May 12, 2008

Arrowhead Central Credit Union finished 2007 with strong financial results despite its geographic location in the “eye of the storm” – California’s housing bust.

By Mike Werstuik | April 14, 2008

As earnings have been a major focus in the credit union media, the cause for the decline in net income may not be what you think. Two CUs also share their thoughts on the current environment.

By Nick Connors | Dec. 3, 2007

While other financial institutions struggled in the third quarter, the cooperative mentality helped credit unions maintain current levels in key profitability measures.

By Jay Johnson | Nov. 26, 2007

America’s 8,333 credit unions continue to serve their more than 88.5 million members at a time when they need it most.

By Jay Johnson | Sept. 3, 2007

Second quarter data shows that credit unions continue to be a steady resource for members as other lenders pull back from the market.

By Jay Johnson | July 16, 2007

The net interest margin reached a new low in the first quarter, and credit unions must focus on the area that is under their control – managing operating expenses.

By Jay Johnson | May 14, 2007

Share growth is picking up as credit union dividends rise at an over 40 percent annual rate. Credit unions seem to be finding lower margins an acceptable trade-off for higher growth.

By Jay Johnson | March 26, 2007

While size and scale help the largest credit unions, growth is not guaranteed. It is how they leverage their scale to gain greater efficiencies that translate to higher member value.

By Jay Johnson | Jan. 1, 2007

While financial performance remains important, credit unions must now also measure their market performance.

By Molly Francis | Dec. 4, 2006

With the current rate environment and net interest margin stabilizing, credit unions can leverage excess capital to bring in shares.

By Appoorva Saxena | Nov. 20, 2006

Achieving a higher return on assets is not necessarily dependent on total asset size – as there are similarities in return for both large and smaller players.

By Appoorva Saxena | Sept. 25, 2006

Is size the key to strong bottom line performance? A closer look at mid-year data provides some answers.

By Paris Ward | Aug. 14, 2006

With net interest margin at its lowest level in recent history, credit unions will need greater focus on expense control to overcome the earnings squeeze.

By Appoorva Saxena | July 31, 2006

Growth in loans, members, and employees yield an impressive “First Look” at the nation’s largest credit union’s second quarter data.

By Paris Ward | July 31, 2006

Fort Knox FCU’s strategy to “work smarter, not harder” helps them maintain a strong ROA despite a declining national trend.

By Jon Jeffreys | June 5, 2006

The traditional credit union business model is gone for good. Future success belongs to credit unions who create new income opportunities with solid member benefits.

By Molly Francis | March 6, 2006

Financial services headlines are talking about the impact of the changing bankruptcy law on the bottom line. During 2005, loan balances subject to bankruptcy in credit unions rose by 17 percent. But is this really what caused a decline in ROA?

By Jon Jeffreys | Feb. 20, 2006

A credit union’s net worth should be used as a catalyst for growth. Credit unions with strong capital positions, therefore, should focus on increased member value, not ROA.

By Molly Francis | Feb. 6, 2006

Navy Federal Credit Union posted solid share growth and strong loan growth during 2005. Read about other key 2005 results for the world’s largest credit union.

By Joe James | Nov. 21, 2005

With the Fed increasing rates and a new Chairman appointment imminent, there is a lot of uncertainty regarding credit unions’ future margins. Find out who is succeeding.

By Carly Spring | Oct. 31, 2005

July 2005 corporate credit union data reinforces that corporates are relying much more on fee income than in the past.

By Andrew Creedon | Oct. 24, 2005

As credit unions face slimmer margins, non-interest income growth continues at a double-digit pace.

By Carly Spring | Sept. 5, 2005

Financial data on several large national retail banks provides some insight into bank strategy, as well as an alternative point of comparison for credit union performance.

By Tom Geggel | April 18, 2005

Margins are tight and ROA is falling for the industry. Find out which credit unions are beating the odds.

By Joe James | April 18, 2005

Baseball analysts predict the Florida Marlins to win the NL East because of their top-notch pitching staff. We have another measure: credit union data!

By Tom Geggel | Jan. 31, 2005

A preview of fourth quarter data shows growth in loans outstanding and total assets, according to the credit unions who have already submitted there 5300 call reports to the First Look program.

By Joe James | Jan. 24, 2005

Credit union performance data predicts Philadelphia will emerge as the Super Bowl XXXIX victor.

By Bret Remey | Jan. 17, 2005

Quarterly ROA rose to six basis points to reach 98 basis points in the third quarter. The rise is partially attributed to many credit unions creating efficiencies within their organization and expanding non-interest income opportunities to grow revenue.

By Scott Homa | Nov. 22, 2004

Forget about split national championships. Callahan's 2005 Credit Union Directory contains enough data to provide a thorough, accurate and decisive judgment of performance.

By Sara Wolfe | Nov. 1, 2004

Collectively, the credit unions in Virginia rank highest in average return on assets (ROA), share growth, asset growth, and credit card penetration. Find out why this state tops the charts and what the leading 10 states are recording in ROA.

By Joe James | Oct. 18, 2004

The deadline for credit unions to submit their third Quarter Call Reports is Oct. 22. Find out how you can get a first peek at credit union industry trends before the NCUA’s official data release date in late November.

By Callahan & Associates | Oct. 11, 2004

Second Quarter 2004 rankings by ROA: View a graph of industry trends and a leader table of the top 50 credit union performers.

By Joe James | March 15, 2004

Quarterly Return on Assets for credit unions dropped 10 basis points in the 4th quarter to 0.90%. However, this drop would’ve been much greater had it not been for credit unions’ strong performance in service income.