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MADISON, Wis. – Aside from mortgages, credit unions aren’t doing much lending right now and that may be contributing to the slowdown trend in membership growth. There’s been a slowdown in membership growth rates from 3% five years ago to 2% today, where it has stagnated over the past four years but overall the numbers have still increased according to data from CUNA’s economics and statistics department. Since loan growth is starting to get back on track to “normal” levels, CUs may see a bump in membership numbers as a result, said CUNA Economist Mike Schenk. The reason may be because as CUs attract a lot of new members through indirect auto lending offers, competitors are also vying for them. As rates go up, those competitors go away and CUs end up getting more indirect loans. Schenk said CUs should be encouraged that the current 2% membership growth rate is still double the rate of the nation’s population growth. Meanwhile, the movement is losing nearly 400 CUs each year, according to CUNA, with the current count at 9,274 for the U.S. and its territories and possessions. [email protected]

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