WASHINGTON (Sept. 20, 2011) – National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Board Member Michael E. Fryzel spoke to the National Association of Federal Credit Union’s (NAFCU) Congressional Caucus here today as the group prepared to storm Capitol Hill and lobby lawmakers for Credit Unions.
Fryzel’s remarks helped focus attendees on the credit union industry’s purpose, reminding the group that “credit unions do not seek profit, but rather seek only to deliver financial services to ordinary men and women in a fair and beneficial way, and to offer financial education to them so that their financial lives are made better so that they can keep more of their hard-earned money.”
He said Congress should be reminded that not one dollar of tax payer money went to save a credit union or to pay for an insured savings account. “Credit union members have looked out for their own people and their own system,” he said, arguing that credit unions have become the best writers of mortgages and best business lenders in America.
Fryzel referenced the current pending legislation and NCUA’s support to increase member business lending past the current Congressional cap, allowing credit unions to grow through alternative or risk-based capital.
“A hundred years ago, many ordinary Americans were not getting the kind of credit or the kind of financial services they deserved,” he said. “Credit unions were seen as an idea that could help these people. Now credit unions help 91 million Americans. They give efficient, effective and sound financial services and adequate credit to ordinary Americans from coast to coast with nothing else in mind than helping the persons who come for that education.”
Additionally, Fryzel took the opportunity to comment on the shocks to the credit union system and how credit unions, trade associations and NCUA as the system’s regulatory body have flexed to remain stable in the changing times.
“I believe the methods for full and complete recovery are now in place and that what is important is for us to be vigilant and to let the methods for recovery work as they are intended to work,” he said. “Credit union reputation among the general population rose after the Wall Street and banking problems of 2008-2009 and that reputation is continuing to rise.”
As to the health of the industry, he cited delinquency and charge-off rates have been falling and balance sheets are improving.
“We all have to make sure that this forward momentum continues and that we never slacken in our commitment to assure that the credit union system is the best financial services system in the nation,” he said.
For full text of the speech, please see this NCUA page.
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, NCUA operates
and manages the National Credit Union Share
Insurance Fund, insuring the deposits of nearly 100
million account holders in all federal credit
unions and the overwhelming majority of
state-chartered credit unions. At
Pocket Cents, NCUA also educates the public on consumer protection and financial literacy issues.