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ALEXANDRIA, Va.- NCUA’s Insurance Report of Activity for February showed that credit unions continue to expand into underserved communities across America. Southeast Financial Federal Credit Union in Nashville, Tenn. expanded into four underserved counties in the state, adding nearly one million potential members last month, according to NCUA’s data. Additionally, J.S.C. Federal Credit Union adopted Houston, Texas as an underserved area with nearly two million residents. February 2005 was the third highest month for underserved area adoptions in at least as many years. Seventeen underserved areas were approved for 11 federal credit unions encompassing nearly 4.8 million potential members. The newly established TIP-trade, industry, profession-charter demonstrated its diversity during the month of February. Tiny Hampton VA Federal Credit Union, with just $7.3 million in assets at the time of application, added potential members from the healthcare community in the Hampton Roads, Va.-area. On the other hand, $5 billion Orange County Teachers Federal Credit Union, based in Santa Ana, Calif., adopted an education TIP spanning Los Angeles, San Luis Obispo, Kern, Santa Barbara, Ventura, San Bernardino, Orange, Riverside, San Diego, and Imperial, Calif. Three new credit unions were chartered in February, NCUA reported. Love Gospel Assembly Federal Credit Union in Bronx, N.Y. and Choices Federal Credit Union of St. Louis were established under federal charters, while Missouri Farmers Union Credit Union opted for a state charter. Also, $31 million Bryant Credit Union of Springfield, Vt. converted to a federal charter. Credit union mergers continued to plod on with 21 during the month of February. Most of the merged institutions were between $1 million and $10 million in assets. -

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