ABA wants ‘top-to-bottom’ investigation of credit union industry

The head of the ABA said credit unions essentially have become indistinguishable from banks.

Citing research it funded, the American Bankers Association is asking the NCUA and its Inspector General to initiate a “top-to-bottom” review of the credit union industry because, the bankers contend, credit unions have abandoned their mission.

A private research group, Federal Financial Analytics, studied the credit union industry and reported this week that it believes that credit unions increasingly are abandoning their mission to serve Americans of modest means and are becoming indistinguishable from banks.

The study was paid for by the ABA, although the company said the trade group had no editorial control over its content.

In his letter to the three NCUA board members and the agency’s Inspector General, ABA President/CEO Rob Nichols accused credit unions of using their tax status and a lax regulatory climate to expand membership to higher-income people, make risky loans and even purchase banks.


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