The Pulse (09-03-2014)



The Pulse (09-03-2014)

September 3, 2014 ● Volume 03, Issue 35


The Pulse Archive

Credit Union News

MnCUN, CU Association of the Dakotas team up to engage media in Fargo

Last Thursday, leaders from the Minnesota Credit Union Network (MnCUN) and the Credit Union Association of the Dakotas converged in Fargo to provide credit union awareness and education to the media. Both organizations met with business and editorial board staff of the The Forum, the major newspaper covering the Fargo and Moorhead media markets.


At the meeting, participants discussed the state of credit unions, specifically recent growth and the overall strength of the industry. Conversation also focused on agricultural and business lending, data security, financial education, and credit unions’ commitment to community involvement.


Part of an overall public affairs strategy, Fargo/Moorhead was one of four stops on MnCUN’s fall slate of press events. Meetings aim to inform and educate members of the media – and thereby Minnesota consumers – on the credit union difference.


“Engaging the media is a major strategic initiative for us at the Network, because we believe that educating reporters and editorial boards will result in more accurate, balanced coverage on financial issues impacting Minnesotans,” said MnCUN President & CEO Mark D. Cummins.


“We are committed to working alongside the credit unions in our state to ensure that members of the media – as well as legislators, community leaders, and consumers – understand the importance of belonging to a local, not-for-profit, member-owned financial institution,” he added.


To accompany the press tour, MnCUN released an infographic titled “Minnesota Minded” – click here to view the infographic. This fall’s press tour will engage additional media markets of St. Paul, Brainerd and Rochester.



Digital directory featuring MnCUN V.I.P. participants now available online

The 2014 digital directory showcasing the 21 participants of this year’s Minnesota Credit Union Network Vendor Involvement Program (V.I.P.) is now available. The 2014 V.I.P. Directory features full company descriptions, as well as contact information for these vendors that have promised dedicated service to Minnesota’s credit unions.

This digital edition also allows credit union professionals to view it anywhere – on a desktop computer, laptop or by using their smartphone's web browser. This interactive directory can also be downloaded as a PDF, shared by email or social media, or printed.

The exclusive vendor listing is a benefit of participating in V.I.P., which is an advertising program that increases service organizations' visibility among credit unions. V.I.P. participants agree to support the Network and Minnesota's credit unions and pledge to offer professional service, quality product lines and competitive pricing. Participation in the Vendor Involvement Program does not constitute an endorsement by the Minnesota Credit Union Network.

More information about the Vendor Involvement Program and links to the 2014 V.I.P. Directory are available on the Network website. With questions, contact MnCUN Vice President – Network Service Corporation John Ferstl at (651) 288-5505.


Regulatory relief, transparency, accountability, among main focuses of new NCUA board member McWatters

Last week, new National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) Board member J. Mark McWatters announced his top priorities for his term at the agency. In a statement, he named regulatory relief, transparency, accountability, supporting low-income credit union members and promoting greater industry diversity as among items high on his list, according to the Credit Union National Association (CUNA).

"In discharging my duties, I will always welcome advice and counsel from the broader credit union industry, as well as from the management and members of individual credit unions," McWatters said.

McWatters said his initial focus as a member of the NCUA board would be in five areas:

  1. Providing regulatory relief for credit unions;
  2. Incorporating a robust, objective, transparent and fully accountable cost-benefit analysis into NCUA's rulemaking and vetting process;
  3. Recognizing the critical role and expanding the scope and financial viability of low-income credit unions within the financial services industry;
  4. Enhancing the availability of affordable and readily understandable financial services to credit union members who are economically challenged; and
  5. Promoting the role of women and persons of color within the credit union industry.

The NCUA has a full-time, three-member board appointed by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the United States Senate. No more than two board members can be from the same political party, and each member serves a staggered six-year term. The NCUA chair is Debbie Matz, and the vice chair is Richard Metsger.


Save the Date: 7th Annual Credit Unions for Kids Bowl-O-Rama!

Your favorite bowling fundraiser is just weeks away! Join the Minnesota Credit Unions for Kids (MnCU4Kids) committee for the 7th Annual Bowl-O-Rama on Thursday, Oct. 23. This event provides credit union professionals and volunteers the chance to raise money for a great cause and have fun doing it.

All proceeds from this fundraiser go to Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare and its clinics around the state, which help kids with disabilities and chronic conditions. Gillette is Minnesota’s Children’s Miracle Network (CMN) designated hospital.

The Bowl-O-Rama begins at 11 a.m. at Stars & Strikes Entertainment Center in Wyoming, Minn. Participants will enjoy lunch, three games of bowling and prize drawings. Plus hear from a Gillette family that directly benefits from the contributions made through MnCU4Kids.

Additional information and registration forms are available on the Event Calendar section of the Network website. With questions, contact MnCU4Kids committee member Marty Kelly.


Financial education training opportunities for credit unions

Credit unions are known by consumers as trusted sources for financial information and advice. Across the state and across the country, credit unions large and small provide financial education to their members and to their communities. Below are two financial education opportunities that credit unions can participate in this fall.

  • U of M Online Course: "Parenting in the Age of Overindulgence"
    Parents, educators, and professionals who have concern for families and their financial well-being are invited to take a free, one-hour online course from the University of Minnesota Extension. Author and researcher Jean Illsley Clarke and the University of Minnesota Extension Overindulgence Team have created this course to explore overindulgence, how it affects families, and how to avoid it. After completing the course exit survey, participants will receive a certificate of completion, and printable PDFs of all tools used in the training materials.
  • Four Cornerstones of Financial Literacy: "Train-the-Trainer" session
    The next Four Corners of Financial Literacy training session will be held Oct. 27-28 in St. Paul. This two-day "train-the-trainer" workshop will build on participants' existing knowledge of money management, focusing on budgeting, saving, debt reduction, credit and more. Staff working directly with consumers to provide financial literacy education are ideal participants. Registration is on a "first come" basis and will open after Labor Day -- limit two people per organization. To be added to the registration mailing list, email Barb Alt or call (651) 431-3884. This training is sponsored by the Office of Economic Opportunity, Minnesota Department of Human Services and the Minnesota Community Action Partnership.


Credit Unions in the News

Follow the links on the stories below to read more about the outstanding programs, new initiatives and well-deserved recognition received by your peers recently. Got news of your own? Send stories, pitches, press releases and published articles to MnCUN Director of Communications Connie Kuhn.  

US Federal Credit Union holds superhero blood drive


TopLine FCU helps young women mentors learn key money management skills


 Mid-Minnesota FCU presents $500 prize to Railroad Days Medallion hunt winner


TopLine FCU’s 11th annual back-to-school supply drive benefits local communities




Minnesota credit unions endorse Rep. Erik Paulsen in 3rd Congressional District race


Access MnCUN's election materials today!

CFPB finalizes remittance rule

HUD publishes final rules on FHA mortgages

NACHA passes new rules regarding exceptions and returns of ACH transactions

US Department of Ed adopts new SCRA procedures for FFEL lenders

NCUA Issues Letters to Federal Credit Unions

Letter No. 14-FCU-03: Unfair or Deceptive Credit Practices


Out for Comment

CFPB schedules proposed HMDA rule for publication, comments due by Oct. 29

Be where your members are – AND where they’re going – with Shared Branching

Retain your increasingly busy current members, and attract new ones, by offering the convenience of widespread branch access and greater person-to-person contact. Extend your reach with shared branching to give your members what they demand. And expand your opportunities to deepen relationships by providing additional products that add new channels for profitability while reinforcing your value as a primary financial institution.

Credit unions often underestimate the cost of inconveniencing their members. Although new channels such as online and mobile are important, the thousands of branches maintained by big national banks offer serious competition for the allegiance of the countless consumers who prize having many convenient places to interact in person with their financial institutions. Through the cooperative power of CO-OP Shared Branching, you can leverage the strength of the fourth largest branch network in the country to retain these most active and profitable members.

More than 1,800 institutions now participate in CO-OP Shared Branching, representing thousands of locations in 50 states. Leverage the economic advantages of this cooperation as part of your branch delivery strategy and you can offer the convenience of an expanded service area, plus service continuity that builds member relationships and bolsters disaster recovery.


CO-OP Shared Branching provides:

  • Extended reach and enhanced member service with more than 5,000 nationwide branch locations and over 2,200 kiosks, near work, home, shopping and travel locations, including the ability to market Credit Union Service Center locations as your own.
  • Ability to make deposits, withdrawals, transfers, account inquiries and other transactions at locations convenient to your members.
  • Access to accounts even when members move, are on vacation or are out of town in an emergency.
  • Growth potential through the deeper, more loyal relationships with your most valuable members that make households with shared branching 12 times more profitable than those without.
  • Continuing innovation to give your members the leading-edge convenience they expect.


CO-OP Shared Branching capabilities include:

  • Locator Services that make shared branching locations as easy to find as you are.
  • Credit Union Recovery (CURe) that protects your ability to serve your members when disaster strikes.
  • Secret Shopper Program to ensure shared branches everywhere share your high standards of service.
  • Professional Marketing Support provided by CO-OP to build awareness of your expanded capabilities.
  • CO-OP CIMple Teller offers CO-OP Shared Branching credit unions a budget-friendly alternative to accepting guest member transactions.

The Network Service Corporation (NSC) manages Minnesota's shared service centers under contract with the Minnesota Credit Union Services Corporation (MnCUSC), a CUSO formed and owned by the NSC and credit unions.

To learn more about MnCUSC and the opportunities available to your credit union through shared branching, contact MnCUN Vice President – Network Service Corporation John Ferstl by email or at (651) 288-5505.

If this describes you, then you are invited to join The Crew. This group 
If this describes you, then you are invited to join The Crew. This group 

Minnesota Credit Union Network
555 Wabasha Street N, Suite 200
St. Paul, MN 55102

(651) 288-5170
(800) 477-1034