Credit unions may have “won the lottery” as a result of the big banks’ giant misstep in pursuing debit fees but the fallout may be short-lived and is not one the industry garnered entirely on its own, according to Boston analyst Ron Shevlin.
“Certainly credit unions do not have to feel guilty about earning this great big pile of money,” maintained Shevlin, a senior analyst/researcher with the Aite Group. But, said Shevlin, they should recognize the windfall came to them “not for who they are but for who they aren’t.”
“To me that’s kind of sad,” said Shevlin suggesting that these kinds of funds may “walk out the door” and become short term after the hoopla over this Saturday’s Bank Transfer Day comes to an end.
He said that was the case several years ago after the securities and solvency crisis when funds shifted to other financial firms but only for a brief period.
There’s no doubt, said Shevlin that the megabanks like Bank of America and Wells Fargo “screwed up by nickel and diming consumers in a non-transparent pricing practice that was not well thought out.”
But while the discovery of credit unions “as the superior alternative” is certainly a positive development for the industry and underscores good fortune it is not one that has really been “earned,” Shevlin said.