Rising net income, elevated insured share growth reported in first quarter of 2021

NCUA Releases Credit Union System Performance Data

ALEXANDRIA, VA (June 4, 2021) — According to the latest financial performance data released today by the National Credit Union Administration, federally insured credit unions reported net income growth of $11.3 billion, or 134.9 percent, over the year ending in the first quarter of 2021. The increase in net income was due in large part to strong growth in other operating income and a decline in the provisioning for loan, lease, and credit loss expenses. Insured shares and deposits rose $286 billion, or 22.4 percent, to $1.56 trillion over the same period.

“Though we are not fully out of the woods of the pandemic’s effects just yet, federally insured credit unions performed well overall in the first quarter of 2021, reporting strong net income, steady loan growth, and lower delinquency rates,” said NCUA Chairman Todd M. Harper. “Compressed margins continued due to low interest rates, and as expected, economic stimulus payments drove growth in insured shares, ultimately contributing to lower net worth levels across the credit union system. In these uncertain economic times, credit unions should continue to focus on the fundamentals of capital, asset quality, earnings, and liquidity as the government’s economic stimulus and forbearance programs come to an end. As community cooperatives, credit unions should also focus on their duty to their members in assisting with their financial well-being.”

Highlights from the NCUA’s Quarterly Data Summary Report for the first quarter of 2021 include:

  • Net income for federally insured credit unions in the first quarter of 2021 totaled $19.7 billion at an annual rate, up $11.3 billion, or 134.9 percent, from the first quarter of 2020. Interest income declined $3.2 billion, or 5.3 percent, over the year to $57.7 billion. Non-interest income increased $5.9 billion, or 29.0 percent, to $26.2 billion, mainly due to growth in other operating income.
  • The credit union system’s provision for loan and lease losses or credit loss expense declined $5.6 billion, or 66.1 percent, over the year, to $2.9 billion at an annual rate in the first quarter of 2021.
  • Total loans outstanding increased $49 billion, or 4.4 percent, over the year to $1.17 trillion. The average outstanding loan balance in the first quarter of 2021 was $16,157, up $282, or 1.8 percent, from one year earlier. Credit union loan balances rose in most major categories compared with the first quarter of 2020.
  • The delinquency rate at federally insured credit unions was 46 basis points in the first quarter of 2021, down 17 basis points compared with the first quarter of 2020. Loan performance improved or was little changed in most major categories.
  • Credit union shares and deposits rose by $317.7 billion, or 23.1 percent, over the year to $1.69 trillion in the first quarter of 2021. Regular shares increased $160.9 billion, or 34.6 percent, to $626.2 billion compared to the first quarter of 2020. Other deposits increased $56.5 billion, or 8.3 percent, to $740.6 billion, led by money market accounts. These were up $80.3 billion, or 28.5 percent, from the first quarter of 2020.
  • The credit union system’s net worth increased by $14.9 billion, or 8.3 percent, over the year to $195.3 billion. The aggregate net worth ratio — net worth as a percentage of assets — stood at 10.01 percent in the first quarter of 2021, down from 11.00 percent in the first quarter of 2020.

The NCUA makes extensive credit union system performance data available in the Credit Union Analysis section of The analysis section includes quarterly data summaries as well as detailed financial information, a graphics package illustrating financial trends in federally insured credit unions, and a spreadsheet listing all federally insured credit unions as of March 31, 2021, including key metrics.

About National Credit Union Administration (NCUA)

The NCUA is the independent federal agency created by the U.S. Congress to regulate, charter and supervise federal credit unions. With the backing of the full faith and credit of the United States, the NCUA operates and manages the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund, insuring the deposits of more than 135 million account holders in all federal credit unions and the overwhelming majority of state-chartered credit unions. The NCUA also protects consumers and educates the public on consumer protection and financial literacy issues.


Joe Adamoli

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