Auto Lending Activity Moving Towards Pre-Recession Highs
After experiencing monthly market shares ranging from 18% to 24% just prior to the recession, credit union auto loan programs may be returning to those record figures.
That’s according to a new white paper, “Successful Indirect Auto Lending Programs Build on Credit Union Strengths in Relationship and Portfolio Management,” from CU Direct Corp.
The lending services CUSO found that once automotive lending started to recover in 2010 and 2011, with finance companies, captives and banks re-entering the automotive lending market, credit union auto loan market share began to return to more normal, pre-2008 levels of 17% to 18%.
Nationally, auto loans accounted for 29% of credit union loans outstanding which represented $166 billion in the third quarter of 2011, CU Direct said citing data from Callahan & Associates.
Since the 2009 credit union indirect lending peak of $76.4 billion, indirect loan volumes have also returned to pre-2008 levels, the data showed. As of the third quarter of 2011, indirect auto loans accounted for 43% of credit union auto loans outstanding versus 37% for the same quarter of 2007.
Prior to the credit crunch of 2008-09, credit union indirect delinquencies and chargeoffs hovered near or below 1%, according to CU Direct. As unemployment climbed, the national average for credit union indirect delinquencies and chargeoffs rose between 1.34% and 1.45% and 1.36% and 1.74%, respectively.
Research from CU Direct acknowledged that some credit unions have struggled to make their indirect programs take off while others have been wary of starting them for fear that loans conducted via an external channel would be harder to control.
To address those obstacles, the white paper reminded credit unions that they have the ability and authority to enforce dealer agreements, which establish credit union lending guidelines and proper procedures to determine member eligibility.
Credit unions can also access reports that provide loan metrics at the dealer level so that they can manage and review indirect lending portfolios to make early intervention and corrections possible to ensure loan quality, according to CU Direct.