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 Mar '18Feb '18
# of CUs5,5965,757
Total Assets
($ billions)
Total Savings
($ billions)
Net Cap.
Loans to Savings81.5%82.6%
Loan Delinq.0.8%0.9%

         Credit Union Indicators

Consumers Want Mainstream Small-Dollar Loans

Americans are also OK with more regulation of payday lenders.

Three out of four Americans would prefer credit unions or banks offer small-dollar loans at rates lower than those offered by payday lenders, according to The Pew Charitable Trusts research.

The study indicates broad support among Americans for the types of reforms on payday lending proposed by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the federal agency with authority over payday loans.

Roughly 12 million Americans use payday loans annually, spending an average of $520 in fees to repeatedly borrow $375.

In March, the CFPB proposed a framework for regulating these and similar loans. Pew then conducted polling in May to gauge Americans' views on payday lending, as well as the key elements of the CFPB proposal and the types of loans likely to result from that proposal.

Respondents overwhelmingly characterize payday lenders' prices as unfair. Some of these terms probably would remain allowable under the proposed CFPB framework.

About 75% of respondents believe payday loans should be more regulated; similarly, in a 2013 Pew survey, 72% of payday loan borrowers said they wanted more regulation.

Respondents believe credit unions likely would offer fair prices on these types of loans, even though the rates would be higher than those for mainstream credit, such as credit cards. For example, 76% view a fee of $80 on $500 paid back over four months as fair.