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prime joins Mortgage Cadence as Symphony

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DENVER (9/27/12)--Mortgage Cadence LLC, a provider of enterprise lending solutions, announced that prime+, Prime Alliance Solutions mortgage lending platform, has been renamed Symphony, joining Orchestrator, Finale, Opus and Reprise in the Mortgage Cadence family of products.

Symphony is Mortgage Cadence's cloud-based retail mortgage lending platform.

"Symphony, known to credit unions nationwide as prime+, produces proven efficiencies and yields real cost savings," said Dan Green, executive vice president of marketing, Mortgage Cadence. "Its track record of constant innovation over the past decade fits perfectly with Mortgage Cadence's history and philosophy of perpetual invention."

Prime Alliance first introduced prime+ as an online origination portal in 2001, later adding features, functions and enhancements.  Complete loan processing capability was introduced in 2005, along with integrated loan documents.  Secondary marketing capabilities, which have increased client profitability, were added in 2009. Imaging debuted in 2010. In December, under the new Symphony name, Mortgage Cadence will introduce a new consumer portal designed to make the mortgage loan origination process faster, easier and more intuitive, the company said.

Nerdwallet.com Coopera prepaid card fifth most affordable

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DES MOINES, Iowa (9/27/12)--NerdWallet.com, an online financial planning resource, has ranked the Coopera Prepaid Reloadable Visa Card as the fifth-most-affordable prepaid card available to consumers.

The ranking is based on the Coopera Card's low fees as compared with other prepaid card options on the market, including two competing products designed for Hispanic cardholders, said Coopera, which works with the Credit Union National Association on serving Hispanic credit union members.

The Coopera Card is designed to offer Hispanic cardholders a fair, dignified reloadable prepaid card option to help them avoid costly nonbank financial services such as money orders, check-cashing and payday advances. The card differs from other prepaid cards targeted for Hispanic cardholders in the language of their choice--English or Spanish--which includes the copy on the card, statements and text alerts, and cardholder support and other related services.

Coopera Card fees are tailored to match the financial behaviors of the Hispanic market, with lower secondary card fees, free interactive voice response calls, lower international fees and lower print statement fees.

NerdWallet.com's interactive prepaid card comparison tool standardizes prepaid cards' disclosures, fee structures and terms and conditions to help consumers understand quickly each card's cost structure. It makes recommendations to consumers based on:

  • Card use, including both signature and PIN transactions;
  • ATM use, including withdrawals and balance inquiries;
  • Reloads, including cash reloads; and
  • Direct deposit and monthly loads, to determine if the user is eligible for a discount.
Coopera Card keeps costs low by offering fee-free cash loads at the cardholder's credit union, direct deposit of payroll checks, or online transfers from an existing checking or savings account, or from other credit or prepaid cards.

"Where a lot of prepaid debit cards get you is the 'free' cash loads," said Anisha Sekar, NerdWallet.com vice president of credit and debit products. "They might not charge a fee, but third-party retailers can levy charges as high as $5 per reload. Not-for-profit credit unions, by contrast, tend to offer affordable products and to reinvest in their community and members' well-being."

To see how the Coopera Card compares to other prepaid card options, use the link.

Coopera works CUNA and credit unions nationwide to help credit unions grow by serving the Hispanic community. Coopera and CUNA designed El Poder es Tuyo (The Power is Yours), a customizable, Spanish-language personal finance website for Hispanic credit union members and potential members. For more information, use the resource link.

cuStudentLoans CUs refinance 5000th private loans

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NEW YORK (9/27/12)--cuStudentLoans, a network of credit unions offering private student loans and consolidation options, reached a milestone when it recently refinanced its 5,000th private student loan.

cuStudentLoans is offered through Fynanz, a CUNA Strategic Services provider. 

When comparing borrowers' student loan consolidations based on the previous interest rate they were charged with the terms they currently receive, the results are an overall savings of nearly $22 million over the loans' lifetime, or roughly $800 per student annually, said cuStudentLoans.

cuStudentLoans' private student loan consolidation program benefits both the lenders (credit unions) and student borrowers, said cuStudentLoans. It provides credit unions with increased lending business, while promoting their products and services to young college graduates who are poised to embark on their salaried careers. Helping graduates consolidate and repay their loans brings value to credit unions providing other financial services. Students have  extra cash available from the consolidation to use for a new car, home, or investments, the company said.

"This is a tremendous savings for students during a time when many graduates are finding it very difficult to repay their loans," says Alice Stevens, chairman of cuStudentLoans. "With all the negative publicity surrounding student lending today, we are here to show that credit unions are turning those stories around with extremely positive results. Because of this program, credit unions can step up and do what they do best--and that's help the consumer save some money while providing great service."