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177 Million Credit Union Members Can't Be Wrong

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
177 Million Credit Union Members Can't Be Wrong

14 October 2008 - On the eve of International Credit Union Day on 16 October, new figures released show that worldwide Credit Union membership has grown to 177 million along with asset growth of 8.2% over the previous year, to over US$1.2 trillion.

Credit Unions from Whangarei to Invercargill are inviting their communities to join them on 16 October as they celebrate International Credit Union Day, recognising the hard work of Credit Union staff and volunteers and showing appreciation to their members.

``Contrary to current global financial trends, Credit Union development around the world is prospering in growth and member service. Through the united efforts of the global movement, Credit Unions are expanding into new countries and infiltrating difficult-to-reach markets, many of which are gaining access to fairly priced financial services for the first time. International Credit Union Day allows us the opportunity to say thanks to our members for their support and also to share what we do with the communities we operate in,'' says Doug McLaren, Chief Executive, New Zealand Association of Credit Unions.

Over 49,000 Credit Unions in 92 countries managed more than US$900 billion in savings in 2007 with Africa leading asset growth last year with a 37.3% increase. Capitalization levels, a measure of financial soundness, remained strong at 9.8% of total non-risk-adjusted assets in 2007, demonstrating that the international Credit Union Movement is on solid financial footing.

Global membership in Credit Unions grew by 3.1% in 2007 compared to the previous year, with Africa again leading the growth curve in relative terms with 15.1% growth.

Credit Unions are not-for-profit and they give the best possible value to members while supporting the communities they operate in. They are owned and democratically controlled by their members to provide savings, loans, and insurance products while promoting thrift, budgeting and the wise use of credit.

``While Credit Unions are all over the world, they are all locally owned so profits are reinvested back into the community of the people who use them. Credit Unions genuinely care about the well-being of their members and this is reflected in the service they provide. No need is too big or too small, so visit our branches during New Zealand Credit Union Week and celebrate with us,'' says Mr McLaren.

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