DETROIT (3/20/14)--The increased presence of credit unions in the auto lending market caught the eye of industry publication Automotive News.
Credit unions' 36% share of total auto loans outstanding is "pretty significant" considering credit unions collectively control only about 7% of consumer financial assets, said Mike Schenk, vice president of economics and statistics for the Credit Union National Association.
In Wednesday's Q-an-A piece with author Jim Henry, Schenk noted better relationships with dealers and a larger membership base helped drive the increase in 2013.
However, the "third leg of the stool" is the democratically controlled structure of credit unions. "The deal the average consumer can get would be substantially better than they would get at commercial banks," Schenk noted.
In 2013, new-auto loans were the fastest-growing segment for credit unions, increasing 13% from a year prior. Credit unions have about $72 billion in loans outstanding for new autos. The used-auto portfolio had about $128 billion, a 10% increase from 2012.