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ARLINGTON, Va. – Corporate credit unions better get used to sharing-their members that is. Many credit unions aren’t relying on just one corporate these days, according to a new NAFCU survey. The metamorphosis of the corporate marketplace is well-known. With national fields-of-membership and the desire to grow, many corporates have looked outside of their traditional sphere of influence to pick up new business. National marketing efforts have led to increased awareness among CUs of other corporates, while technology has broken down former geographic boundaries. All these factors have led to credit unions joining multiple corporates. According to the NAFCU survey, 33% of credit unions are members of two corporates, and 15% are members of three or more corporates. Not surprisingly, NAFCU said larger asset credit unions tend to be in the three or more corporates category. The survey also found that while 94% of credit unions are members of corporates, some 87% said they also utilize a correspondent financial institution outside the credit union system, specifically, Fed Reserve district banks (56%). Another 31% of CUs surveyed said they utilize commercial banks, and another 11% said Federal Home Loan Banks. In what area are corporates providing the most value to credit unions? NAFCU asked CUs to rank corporates’ competitiveness from most to least in six areas (see chart). Credit unions ranked corporates most competitive in fund management/financial services, the core of what corporates do, and least competitive in ATM/card services, a product area many corporates aren’t even in. Neither of these results are surprising. Corporates, which are getting more tech-savvy, still have a lot of work to do in the area of electronic services, which credit unions ranked fourth in terms of competitiveness. Corporates, specifically Northwest Corporate, Empire Corporate, WesCorp and FirstCorp, have started helping members with serving businesses, but according to the survey only 5% of credit unions said they have called on corporate credit union expertise to help them in the business realm. Interestingly, paid-in-capital, which was part of a dispute among corporates and NCUA when the new Part 704 was being drafted, is being used by over 60% of credit unions. Some 63% of survey respondents said they purchased PIC from their corporate. The initial dispute between NCUA and corporates, which was later resolved, was over allowing corporates a more liberal grandfathering clause to offer PIC. [email protected]

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