The most immediate issue facing our industry is the continued access to services provided traditionally by corporate credit unions. The picture of what our corporate system will ultimately look like is still somewhat hazy. But recognizing the critical importance of continuity, member-owner natural person credit unions are taking a very proactive stance in shaping the future. Many have already scheduled meetings (or member group meetings) with their corporate credit unions. Others, whose services are now being provided by the bridge corporates, are also actively reviewing their options. Finally, some have already taken action to merge their corporate. As a result, I expect the fog will clear rapidly.

I commend these natural person credit unions for their hands-on approach and the corporate CEOs who have uniformly expressed support for calls to action by their natural person member-owners. In this regard, one thing is certain, the ultimate determination of the services to be provided by corporate credit unions, as well as the size, scope and extent of the corporate system, must rest with their member-owner natural person credit unions. They, and they alone, must be permitted to set the course and direction of their corporate for the future.

As natural person credit unions continue their assessments of their business needs, a number of factors come to mind. First and foremost, the NCUA staff has indicated that all the remaining corporates are economically viable. At the same time, it must be noted that the new corporate rule sets a 4% capital threshold one year from now, with only six corporates meeting this requirement today. Additionally, a subsequent rule is anticipated at the NCUA board meeting in November that is expected to limit membership to one corporate. These factors, as well as questions regarding the future of those corporates that continue to hold some distressed investments, must be carefully weighed.

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