In early August, Standard & Poor’s downgraded the United States’ credit rating. The action has shaken investors, but it has also presented the credit union industry with the opportunity to step back and evaluate its standing in America's financial system.
Credit unions are not like other players in the financial landscape. The strength of credit unions doesn’t come from a designation determined by a credit rating agency. Credit unions’ strength is determined by members, and members were not downgraded. As member-owned cooperatives, credit unions are subject to market forces but they are not market driven. They provide a safe harbor for members; they are a source of certainty, stability, and reliability; they are furnishers of credit and creators of thrift.
Now is the time to communicate the credit union difference. In this “Voices In The Industry” CUtv exclusive, Jim Blaine, CEO of State Employees’ Credit Union ($23B, Raleigh, NC), talks about the role of credit unions yesterday, today, and tomorrow.