Why a credit union might be the smartest choice you’ve ever made

first_imgby: Rachel ProssI think all of us can look back on an “AHA!” moment when something really resonated or finally clicked. For me, that moment came in the days following an armed robbery at work. It was the fall of 2010, and I was a very green credit union CEO. My credit union, a relatively small financial cooperative of about fifteen million dollars in assets, had a whopping seven employees. Having a masked man point a gun at your face is one kind of “aha” moment for some people. It certainly was for many of my employees–some of whom called in sick, one who quit completely and never looked back, and some who took leaves of absence. When it came time to reopen the building, I was desperately short staffed. I picked up the phone and called a much larger credit union about two hours away that happened to use the same data processor as mine. Feeling a little frantic, I asked the CEO if he could spare one or two employees for me to borrow for a week or so, because I knew they could operate our computer system. I offered to pay salary, travel, food, and lodging. That CEO didn’t know me at all, but he immediately sent me FIVE employees. He wouldn’t let me pay a dime. He had my back, because I was a “credit unioner,” and credit unioners are family. That was my “aha” moment. That’s when I knew I had found an industry that I would be a part of for life.I’m often asked, “What’s the difference between a credit union and a bank?” For me, one of the best ways I’ve ever heard it explained is that credit unions are the not-for-profit balance to the credit structure of the United States. They’re member-owned financial cooperatives, meaning that earnings are returned to the members in the form of better rates on loans, higher yields on deposits, and fewer and lower fees. Our boards are elected by and for the members. Since credit unions don’t have stockholders, they exist solely to serve members. That’s it. No matter how small or big a credit union is, that fundamental cooperative structure remains the same. It’s pretty awesome, and it’s really the essence of “people helping people.” Imagine what the U.S. economy would be like without a not-for-profit balance and competitive presence in the financial services marketplace to help keep rates and fees in check. continue reading » 7SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Apple Card rollout threatens traditional financial institutions

first_img continue reading » The rollout of the much-discussed Apple Card unleashed an avalanche of media coverage only a few months after a pre-launch announcement stirred up a similar media frenzy. It’s the Apple mystique. Everything they do is seen as larger than life.But, really, this is about a credit card. How could that be a threat to traditional banks and credit unions? We’re not talking about Amazon in banking.While Apple is very different from the ecommerce giant, the two do share one thing in common: They’re both customer experience companies. Apple has built a consumer product empire upon seeking out opportunities to improve the consumer experience in computing, music, phones and more. Most people think of Apple as a product company, and they sell billions of products to be sure. But always the focus is on the design, the function, the utility, the experience.The company has explored co-branded cards before, and has an existing arrangement with Barclaycard. But the Apple Card is at another level altogether, being a virtual card integrated into Apple Pay, the company’s mobile wallet launched in 2014. As Ben Bajarin, Principle Analyst with Creative Strategies, observes, “The opportunity for Apple to insert themselves into payments was clear with Apple Pay, and extending into the banking arena is a natural progression.” ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Gunners pose greater threat – Wenger

first_img Press Association Wales international Gareth Bale scored his eighth goal in his last six appearances with a superb last-minute winner to beat West Ham 3-2 on Monday night, a victory which lifted Spurs up to third in the Barclays Premier League table. However, as the two sides prepare to do battle in the north London derby at White Hart Lane on Sunday, Wenger insists his own side can produce plenty of attacking threats, and said: “At the moment I feel we can score from many positions and I prefer that, personally.” He added: “We have many players who can score – (Theo) Walcott can score, (Olivier) Giroud can score, (Santi) Cazorla can score, (Lukas) Podolski can score, I think (Jack) Wilshere will score as well, so we have many. “We have scored more goals than last year and last year our efficiency was always depending on (Robin) van Persie and I always worried about the day van Persie gets injured.” Despite Wenger’s bravado that Arsenal should focus on their own game rather than worrying about what Bale might do at any given moment, the Arsenal manager concedes the 23-year-old, whom he once scouted when a raw youngster at Southampton, is in top form. “Bale has good pace, at the moment he has a good conversion rate between the chances he creates and the goals he scores. That is quite cyclical (I think). “I think it’s certainly the best in Europe between in terms of conversion rate and chances created, but to maintain that is very, very difficult.” center_img Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has warned Tottenham his side are no longer reliant on the goal threat of any one player.last_img read more

Collection of best/worst memes from Giants’ three game sweep of Dodgers

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error A quick check of the calender shows that it’s indeed May. San Francisco Giants fans celebrated Thursday’s three-game sweep of the Dodgers like it was October. And it was pretty funny.Here are some of the best/worst memes from what Giants fans were calling #SweepLA.Viewing on mobile? Click here to view.last_img