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To spin the words of a one-time Washington oracle, there are known knowns, known unknowns and unknown unknowns – and for credit unions, they all converge in Q3. That’s because the third quarter is when most institutions set their annual budgets. In recent years, the challenges this brings to credit unions have grown, regardless of how well they try to line up their projections for the coming year.

Budget setting is a difficult task for any business due to the problems inherent to making decisions based on imperfect and incomplete information. Projections often end up being based on past results, which may be accurate enough during periods of stability, but the future tends to hold surprises – hence, the problem of unknown unknowns.

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