Thrivent Financial Bank Still on Track to Become Credit Union
Wisconsin’s Thrivent Financial Bank, a $543 million thrift, remains primed to convert to a credit union, perhaps this year, the parent corporation said Wednesday.
The Appleton bank, part of a Minneapolis insurance and investment conglomerate serving Lutherans in the Upper Midwest, has said it wants to switch to a credit union to free itself of strict insurance regulations under Dodd-Frank.
A spokesman for the conglomerate, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, said it is still waiting on approval by the regulatory agencies on its application filed last fall.
In November, Thrivent noted that the bank itself had been formed in 2001 through the consolidation of three affiliated credit unions, a trust bank and a community bank and had chosen a thrift charter because it was the most flexible.
“We are awaiting approval by NCUA, the Comptroller of the Currency, Federal Reserve Board, FDIC and the Wisconsin Insurance Commission on our proposed transition to a credit union,” the spokesman said. “We are not able to offer an estimated timeline for approval at this point.”
Thrivent Financial CEO Todd Sipe said the bank began looking at a credit union charter during 2011, citing what he called regulatory demands on insurance companies that own banks.
Sipe noted also that Thrivent Financial, a Fortune 500 firm that offers a range of insurance and banking products to 3 million members, had previously been regulated by the Office of Thrift Supervision but that elimination of the OTS under Dodd-Frank has meant that thrift holding companies must now apply with the Federal Reserve to become bank holding companies.