It Pays to Be a Credit Union Member

Credit unions’ not-for-profit, cooperative structure continues to drive strong financial benefits directly to members. It’s a story profit-driven financial institutions cannot tell, because their earnings flow to stockholders. During the 12 months ending in December, 2016, credit union members were at an advantage in virtually every interest rate category, according to the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) quarterly reports.
CUNA’s reports are based on Informa Research comparisons of bank and credit union interest rates, and other National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) data.

Here’s a regional snapshot of the good news for credit union members:


Gem State credit unions delivered nearly $75.5 million in direct benefits to their 750,438 members, equivalent to $101 per member, or $191 per member household. CUNA calculated a five-year loan on a $25,000 vehicle saved credit union members an average of $133 in interest alone last year, vs what they would have shelled out with a loan from a profit-driven financial institution. Collectively, credit union members saved over $28 million in interest in new and used car loans, $10.5 million in credit card interest, and $1.5 million on home loan payments. Idaho’s credit union members earned $19.8 million more on savings accounts than bank customers.


The largest savings driving Oregon members’ $144.5 million in member benefits, was $32.8 million in credit card interest payments. Oregon credit union members financing a $25,000 car for five years, avoided $136 last year in interest fees. Higher interest paid on savings products saved members over $28 million.


Member benefits saved each Washington credit union household an astonishing $214 last year, according to the new Membership Benefits report. In delivering $388.7 million in direct benefits to their members, credit unions bested rates paid on savings by $66.1 million and collectively saved members over $118 million in savings on credit card interest alone.

Marketers from Northwest Credit Union Association (NWCUA) member credit unions may log onto the password-protected Marketing Resource Center to obtain the 2016 year-end Membership Benefits Reports, and other resources.

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