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United FCU video discusses bank bailouts
ST. JOSEPH, Mich. (2/18/09)--United FCU (UFCU) is using a video as part of a new educational campaign to help the credit union let the public know that credit unions are a safe, smart and dependable option for financial services--one that is always there for members, especially in times of financial crisis.
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UFCU reported 11.5% loan growth in 2008, from the previous year, while bank lending saw record decline prior to the government’s bank rescue plan, UFCU said. The campaign appeared in key markets where bailouts are prominent, including Michigan, Ohio, North Carolina and Arkansas, and hopes to create a broader awareness and change the public's impressions of credit unions nationally. “Because banks have branches in every city--often in multiple locations--and ATMs on every corner, credit unions are frequently overlooked as an option,” said Gary Easterling, president/CEO of UFCU. “As an industry, credit unions are considered to be a relatively small player in the field of financial services because they don't have the physical presence that banks do.” The video mentions credit unions’ higher deposit rates, how credit unions do not chase profits but rather focus on the needs of members, and if the recession continues, credit unions will continue to meet the needs of members. By targeting the lack of understanding the public has about credit unions versus other financial service options, UFCU said it hopes to tell its story to eligible non-members who may not realize that credit unions even exist. UFCU also has invested in a website, which will provide more detailed information about the credit union and its membership advantages, and member testimonials, video clip messages from UFCU's CEO, and links to financial tools. UFCU, based in St. Joseph, Mich., has $849 million in assets.
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