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Duke professor backs CU system

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WASHINGTON (2/23/09)— Strengthening credit unions could be an effective way of rebuilding the nation's financial system, a Duke University economics professor told a national TV audience Friday. Dan Ariely, James B. Duke Professor of Behavioral Economics at Duke in North Carolina, said credit unions have shown they do the right thing and he would support actions to back them. Ariely, formerly a professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, made his remarks on the Lehrer News Hour on PBS. Participating on a panel discussing the country’s financial crisis, Ariely brought up the positive nature of the credit union system. Credit unions, the Duke professor said, represent an alternative banking system in the U.S., one that has done the right thing. He noted that credit unions have been “untouched by all of these problems.” “I think I would personally strengthen them,” Ariely said. Ariely is the author of a number of books, including the currently best-selling “Predictable Irrationality.”