Filene Study to Quantify Impact of Regulatory Burden; Northwest Response Wanted

When federal and state lawmakers pass new financial services regulations, their intent is generally to protect consumers. As credit union regulatory compliance specialists know, the unintended consequences of those regulations often result in expensive, time-consuming hoops to jump through and sometimes, even more limited access of affordable credit to consumers. Small credit unions are often hardest hit finding resources to comply.

The Filene Research Institute and Credit Union Central of Canada are asking North American credit unions to complete a survey detailing the impact increasing regulations have on their ability to serve members.

The Northwest Credit Union Association (NWCUA) is encouraging widespread response by Northwest credit unions.

“It is important that the Northwest credit union voice on matters important to credit union issues is heard,” said NWCUA President and CEO Troy Stang. “This is yet another opportunity where we can demonstrate our commitment to improving the regulatory process, by offering an overwhelming response to the survey.”

“The unintended consequences of the Dodd Frank regulatory fire hose is that many credit unions are having to reallocate valuable resources from creating real, tangible value for members to ensuring new regulatory requirements are being met,” said John Trull, director of regulatory affairs. “Credit unions need to respond to this survey to help advocates put the regulatory focus back where it belongs—on Too Big to Fail.”

Trull noted Northwest credit unions need a strong regional response to make the results statistically significant. He stressed that Northwest credit unions posted an overwhelming response to the National Exam Survey sponsored by the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) and the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA).

“We used those responses to negotiate improvements to the exam process,” said Trull. “With a strong response, the NWCUA will be able to similarly leverage the Regulatory Burden Survey.”

Responses, due by June 21, will be used in a study to scientifically quantify the regulatory burden for credit unions. Professors Panu Kalmi from the University of Vaasa, Finland, and Giovanni Ferri, LUMSA University of Rome, Italy, will perform the analysis.

“Only Filene researchers will have access to your responses, which will be kept confidential,” according to the online survey. “The final report will be available to all respondents and will use only anonymous aggregate data.”

The survey will determine how much regulatory compliance costs credit unions, including time employees devote to compliance, consulting and legal fees, training of staff and board of directors, and board insurance to cover liability related to compliance.

Filene recommends that credit union employees directly responsible for compliance take the survey, as answers must be completed in one session. The Regulatory Burdens Survey is available here.

The regulatory analysis study is expected to be completed by late fall.


Questions? Contact Lynn Heider: 503.350.2225,

Posted in Compliance News, NWCUA.