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ITheStreet.comI CUs crash student-loan party
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (8/24/09)--Credit unions' efforts in helping students obtain private student loans is still getting media attention, this time in Massachusetts. The Street.com wrote about a Massachusetts credit union's efforts in its "MainStreet" column Friday. "With private lenders fleeing the scene, thanks to ongoing lousy credit conditions, credit unions are increasingly picking up the slack in a market they've long avoided--student loans," began the article. It discussed Harvard University Employees CU's pact with the university to make student loans available to international graduate and professional students, who found loans drying up in the tight market. The Credit Union Student Choice program, with more than 80 credit unions participating to offer loans, is "a pretty good deal for college students," with an average interest rate of 5.8% and no origination fees, the article said. It also mentioned credit unions' programs in New Jersey and Connecticut, which have received media attention recently. Credit union loans could narrow the gap between government-backed student loans and private student loans, the Street said. Credit union borrowers get lower rates on student loans. Credit unions are in more stable financial position--since they didn't take the big credit risks that banks did. "Expect to see even more credit unions enter the student loan market--it seems like a good deal for both parties. Credit unions get access to newer, younger customers, and students get even better deals than they did from banks," the article concluded.


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