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CU Snapshot

 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

Rewards Drive Credit Card Choices

Only about half of existing members carry a CU card.

Credit card growth at credit unions continues to rise, but a large majority of consumers pick their bank-issued cards first when making a purchase.

With the top seven U.S. card issuers—all banks—gobbling up roughly 75% of all credit card activity, a new Filene Research Institute white paper explores how credit unions can steal more of the market, particularly from within their memberships.

Surprisingly, based on research using the "Wallet Allocation Rule," the allure of rewards—not value—drives usage.

The research finds:

"Despite credit unions' traditional strengths of low rates and fees, and overall consumer friendliness, only about half of members carry a credit union card," the report says. "And those that do carry a credit union card tend to spend less on it than they do on bank cards.

"Translating satisfaction into growth will require reducing members' perceived need to use the competition's cards for rewards and prestige. That's how to get deeper into their wallets."