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<p>NEW YORK – Credit unions were singled out in the Personal Finance section of the May 15 Wall Street Journal for their successful online banking efforts. “Credit unions are succeeding online where some Internet-only banks and major financial institutions have stumbled, largely because online banking is so well-suited for credit union members, who aren’t accustomed to having a bank branch on every corner,” Moriah Campbell-Holt, online banking analyst with Gomez, Inc., said in the story. The story quotes a Bankrate.com stat that says 3,100 credit unions have Web sites. Navy Federal Credit Union, Texans Credit Union, Pentagon Federal Credit Union, Envision Credit Union and Penn State Credit Union were all cited in the story. Those five CUs are among the leaders in providing online services. The story also highlighted how people shouldn’t just look at the name of a CU to see if they’re eligible. It makes reference to The Credit Union Membership Access Act, nothing that the law “greatly expanded the definition of community”, which is helping credit unions “reach a much wider consumer base.”It also gave an interesting example of membership reach at Pentagon FCU. It states that anyone who agrees to make an annual $20 contribution to join the National Military Family Association – a group that provides aid to military families – can join Pentagon FCU. According to the story, one of the reasons Internet banks may be stumbling is they’re losing their shyness about charging fees. According to Bankrate.com, 80% of interest-paying accounts at Internet banks charge service fees, up from 59% last year.</p>

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