ALEXANDRIA, Va. -- Delivering the keynote address at NACUSO's Business Services Collaborative, NCUA Vice Chairman Rodney Hood gave high marks to credit unions and CUSOs that are making inroads in member business lending.
"I realize that many credit unions do not have the necessary infrastructure to take full advantage of Member Business Lending," Hood told attendees at the Chicago-based meeting. "CUSOs provide a wonderful and proven mechanism to provide Member Business Lending and help credit unions mitigate risks through balance sheet diversification."
In highlighting the importance of member business lending, Hood cited the most recent economic statistics, which state that under President Bush's leadership, 1.7 million jobs have been created over the past 12 months, and more than 6.6 million jobs have been created since August 2003. The American economy has added new jobs for 37 straight months, while the unemployment rate is 4.6%--below the average of each of the past three decades, he said.
"I am very proud of the role America's credit unions continue to have in making the economy strong," Hood said. "As your regulator, it is a priority of mine to achieve safety and soundness while maintaining the flexibility which allows credit unions to provide the services which make the American dream a reality for your members."
NACUSO held two collaboratives last year in Kansas City and Chicago. This year's meeting focused on several topics including "keeping the loan pipeline full" success stories, opportunities in treasury management, leasing and cooperative purchasing and leveraging the CUSO network.
Hood said on-site visits to CUSOs have proven effective.
"I have visited many CUSOs, especially during Small Business Week, and seen firsthand their cost effective and results oriented approach to accomplish Member Business Lending without additional infrastructure cost," Hood said.