Thursday, March 29, 2018

Time is running out Early Bird Registration Ends 7/1/2018

    NCOFCU 2018 Conference is filling up

NCOFCU 2018 Conference Registration
Early Bird ends 7/1/18

September 19-22, 2018 in Seattle, WA
“Great things happen when credit unions serving firefighters and first responders come together. Our Face-to-face interaction is the platform where collaboration begins, relationships are forged, and ideas are generated."
The key aspects of this meeting will focus on the collaborative discussions among the attendees from the credit union community. Participants will have the opportunity to sit in on breakout sessions covering a variety of subjects of key interest to credit unions. You'll walk away with:
  • Tools and techniques from credit union leaders
  • Fresh and innovative business strategies – from growing your products to being ready for the next wave of change
  • What you really need to know about the firefighter credit union environment
  • New connections from open forums, networking receptions and special events.
Renaissance Hotel Reservations
T 206.694.4944 
  F 206.624.8125

2018 Conference Sponsor
Jim Donovan - National Accounts Manager 1-800-871-0467 ext. 615

Enjoy our Friday night Reception and Dinner sponsored by
Corporate America Credit Union
"aquarium open for our private viewing"

National Council of Firefighter Credit Unions Inc.
3741 De Garmo Lane Miami, FL 33133

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Steven Rick Chief Economist Cuna Mutual "Credit union lending is booming"

Credit union lending is booming and the positive trend is expected to continue in 2018, according to the chief economist for CUNA Mutual Group. According to Steven Rick, who also is a director for the Madison, Wis.-based company, credit union loan balances rose 0.7 percent in January – an improvement over the 0.6 percent pace reported in January 2017, and an increase of 10.9 percent during the last 12 months. 

2018 conference is in Seattle

Registration is now OPEN Click HERE

Monday, March 26, 2018

Credit unions and tech experts respond to the Facebook/Cambridge Analytica data "breach of trust."

| March 23, 2018 at 10:30 AM
The events revealed so far in the emerging Facebook and Cambridge Analytica story, may not be a data “breach” but nevertheless, serve as a wakeup call to millions sharing personal information.
Following reports that Cambridge Analytica, a data analysis firm reportedly used in the last presidential campaign, acquired and used Facebook data on some 50 million people without their consent. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg acknowledged his company was partially to blame. “We have a responsibility to protect your data, and if we can’t then we don’t deserve to serve you,” Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post. He added, “It was also a breach of trust between Facebook and the people who share their data with us and expect us to protect it. We need to fix that.”
Some compared the exposure to a data breach. San Diego-based The Identity Theft Resource Center, which chronicles data breaches, took the extraordinary step by responding to the recent developments in a press release. “The misuse of millions of Facebook users’ data cannot be classified as a breach one way or another given the lack of specifics currently available.” They did warn consumers about underestimating the value and potential mine-ability of their personal identifying information. Eva Velasquez, president and CEO of the ITRC, said. “Many times, users do not understand that there can be unintended consequences to adding information to their account.”
Gene Fredriksen, chief information security strategist for PSCU, pointed out that people might assume the effects from a breach limited to the breached company. “The truth is that the aggregate information from a series of breaches can build an extensive personal profile.”
In the case of Facebook, Fredriksen suggested everyone should consider information in their profiles, discussions in their posts and revelations through their friends list. He added, “Combine the Facebook information with the financial and account information from an Equifax breach and information from a personnel department breach, such as the Office of Personnel Management, and you can build a cradle-to-grave personal history. A treasure trove for anyone wanting to steal identities, commit other kinds of fraud, or simply resell the bundled information to other criminals.”
This situation does not pose specific risks to credit unions as a routine data breach would, John Buzzard, industry fraud specialist, CO-OP Financial Services, observed. “The vast information in play here was digitized and scored into behavioral analysis for the benefit of the third-party research firm and its clients.”
Buzzard maintained this situation really is a great cautionary tale for consumers who willingly overshare their activities and preferences on social media without properly understanding the possible extrapolation of their activity not in tandem with their personal, financial or political views. “This Big Brother scenario, often feared by consumers, rarely gets put at the top of their list of privacy priorities when it comes to online entertainment and communication.”
Buzzard did provide one caution, “Software developers always tell you about the risk in working with a third-party vendor and now, more than ever, we all have to ensure that our data is leveraged and limited to the scope that most reasonably serves our clients and nothing more. We all have to ask better questions and understand where the buck and the data stops.”
Rebecca Herold, president of the Des Moines, Iowa-based SIMBUS and CEO of The Privacy Professor, said, “There are many dangers to the public, as well as to credit unions, especially those that have pages on Facebook.” Herold maintained credit unions should consider what type of personal details or inclinations are available on pages through comments, posts, and activities.
Herold noted, “Cambridge Analytica performed big data analytics on all this data, and used new types of artificial intelligence, to gain insights into lives (incomes, locations, race, religion, etc.) of people on Facebook.” Those insights could help in trying to persuade members to buy things or use their information to target them as potential crime victims. “We simply do not know all the entities that now have all this data that they collected.”

Check out our line up of excellent speakers in Seattle!

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Federal Reserve Increases Rates

Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in January indicates that the labor market has continued to strengthen and that economic activity has been rising at a moderate rate. Job gains have been strong in recent months, and the unemployment rate has stayed low. Recent data suggest that growth rates of household spending and business fixed investment have moderated from their strong fourth-quarter readings. On a 12-month basis, both overall inflation and inflation for items other than food and energy have continued to run below 2 percent. Market-based measures of inflation compensation have increased in recent months but remain low; survey-based measures of longer-term inflation expectations are little changed, on balance.

Consistent with its statutory mandate, the Committee seeks to foster maximum employment and price stability. The economic outlook has strengthened in recent months. The Committee expects that, with further gradual adjustments in the stance of monetary policy, economic activity will expand at a moderate pace in the medium term and labor market conditions will remain strong. Inflation on a 12-month basis is expected to move up in coming months and to stabilize around the Committee's 2 percent objective over the medium term. Near-term risks to the economic outlook appear roughly balanced, but the Committee is monitoring inflation developments closely.

In view of realized and expected labor market conditions and inflation, the Committee decided to raise the target range for the federal funds rate to 1-1/2 to 1-3/4 percent. The stance of monetary policy remains accommodative, thereby supporting strong labor market conditions and a sustained return to 2 percent inflation.

In determining the timing and size of future adjustments to the target range for the federal funds rate, the Committee will assess realized and expected economic conditions relative to its objectives of maximum employment and 2 percent inflation. This assessment will take into account a wide range of information, including measures of labor market conditions, indicators of inflation pressures and inflation expectations, and readings on financial and international developments. The Committee will carefully monitor actual and expected inflation developments relative to its symmetric inflation goal. The Committee expects that economic conditions will evolve in a manner that will warrant further gradual increases in the federal funds rate; the federal funds rate is likely to remain, for some time, below levels that are expected to prevail in the longer run. However, the actual path of the federal funds rate will depend on the economic outlook as informed by incoming data.

Voting for the FOMC monetary policy action were Jerome H. Powell, Chairman; William C. Dudley, Vice Chairman; Thomas I. Barkin; Raphael W. Bostic; Lael Brainard; Loretta J. Mester; Randal K. Quarles; and John C. Williams.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

AffirmX New Pricing on AdvisX AML Validation

advisx-pricedropNew Pricing on AdvisX's Most Popular Product: AML Validation Services

AdvisX, AffirmX's sister company, is rolling out a new pricing structure for its most popular product: AML monitoring system validation services. The new fee is available for projects beginning in Q2 2018.

The fee for an institution with moderate AML risks is now 30% lower than our 2016-2017 pricing structure. We have achieved this cost savings by implementing techniques that allow us to more efficiently complete the projects without diminishing the quality of personal service or the thoroughness for which AdvisX is known.

What AdvisX Clients Are Saying

  • "It was a very good experience and I’d like to use your services again in the future!” Steven Nazaruk, Ocala Community Credit Union
  • “From start to finish, we were pleased with the entire project which included data analysis, alert creation and review, including customizing data to be specific to our market area and financial institution. I would be remiss not to mention communication and collaboration from the entire AdvisX team during the project.” Mary Ann Ginn, Crest Savings Bank
  • “We appreciated the constant communication throughout the entire validation process. Everyone was great to work with and the offsite process was great.” Jennifer Gardner, Marquette Bank
  • “Turn around time for each project was great. The entire team was knowledgeable, flexible with the credit union timelines and very easy to work with.” Lisa Lewis, Carter Federal Credit Union
  • “Thank you for your help in completing our project on time!” Jason Williamson, Home Federal Savings Bank
  • “Responsive. The report was easy to understand.” Rebecca Harrison, Bank First National
  • “Satisfied with the work done and looking forward to working more in the future.” Wayne Kramer, China CITIC Bank International
  • “Stayed on task and completed the project in a timely manner.” Ed Hide, NASB

To receive a customized proposal with AdvisX's new pricing structure, please click here or call 888-980-1949.  

Thursday, March 15, 2018

AffirmX a Member Benefit!

Your NCOFCU membership entitles you to one (1) license of “ This is a $240 dollar value provided to you with your membership in NCOFCU. Your membership also entitles you to their NCOFCU member discounted pricing on all their compliance services. For more about their products and services Click Here

Schedule a Live Demo
See for yourself how the AffirmX Risk Intel Center can help your institution improve risk management and regulatory compliance effectiveness while reducing costs. Schedule a demo

Client Service/Project Coordinator
To schedule, a demo contact Heather Riley
o: 888.972.3624, ext. 7014

Check out our line up of excellent speakers in Seattle!

Monday, March 12, 2018

NCUA Releases Q4 2017 Credit Union System Performance Data

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (March 5, 2018) – Data on the financial performance of federally insured credit unions in the quarter ending Dec. 31, 2017, are now available from the National Credit Union Administration.

Q4 2017 Credit Union System Performance Data

The number of federally insured credit unions declined to 5,573 in the fourth quarter of 2017 from 5,785 in the fourth quarter of 2016. In the fourth quarter of 2017, there were 3,499 federal credit unions and 2,074 federally insured, state-chartered credit unions. The year-over-year decline is consistent with long-running industry consolidation trends.

NCUA makes detailed credit union system performance data available on its Credit Union and Call Report Data webpage, including Call Report quarterly summaries and financial performance reports. The agency’s Industry Data page includes a Financial Trends in Federally Insured Credit Unions package illustrating industry trends.

The NCUA has made changes to the quarterly data report to reflect changes in the information collected from credit unions as a result of the agency’s modernization of its member-business lending rule in 2016. A detailed explanation of those changes is available online here.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Call for Nominations: Best Credit Unions to Work For

Now in its fifth year, this program identifies and recognizes the movement’s best employers. If you think your organization has what it takes to be honored — or if you simply want to know more about this project — we invite you to learn more by visiting our special website. The 2018 registration deadline is April 27.
Click HERE  or 

Monday, March 5, 2018

Credit unions lending rose at a faster pace in most sectors than the small banks last year, according to data released this week by the FDIC and CUNA Mutual Group.

What credit unions lacked in size they made up for in speed compared with community banks and savings institutions in 2017.
Credit unions lending rose at a faster pace in most sectors than the small banks last year, according to data released this week by the FDIC and CUNA Mutual Group.
CUNA Mutual’s monthly trends report showed credit unions held $984.8 billion in total loans at Dec. 31, up 10.7% from a year earlier and a growth rate more than twice as fast as community banks.

Credit union assets rose 6.3% to $1.4 trillion due to a 6.3% increase in deposits, a 3% drop in borrowings and a 7.7% increase in capital.
With loan balances growing faster than assets, the loan-to-asset ratio ended 2017 at 70.4%, up from 67.5% a year earlier. The fast loan growth also helped loan delinquency rates fall to 0.79% in December, down from 0.83% a year earlier, according to CUNA Mutual.
The FDIC’s Quarterly Banking Profile showed loans at the nation’s 5,670 community banks and savings institutions rose 4.5% to $9.7 trillion, while assets grew 3.8% to $17.4 trillion.
Credit unions had faster growth in three major sectors:
  • Credit cards at credit unions grew 8.3% to $58 billion; at community banks they grew 8.2% to $865.1 billion.
  • Total car loans at credit unions grew 12.8% to $342.8 billion in 2017; at community banks they grew 1.8% to $450 billion.
  • Loans secured by real estate grew Total real estate loans at credit unions grew 9.3% to $480.9 billion; at community banks they grew 3.7% to $4.8 trillion. At credit unions, first-lien mortgages grew 9.9% to $397.1 billion, while second-lien mortgages grew 6.7% to $83.8 billion.
Much of credit unions’ overall growth in 2017 came from auto loans, which grew faster than most other parts of portfolios.
Real estate’s share of total loans fell 62 basis points to 48.8% by Dec. 31, while total car loans grew 66 basis points to 34.8%.
New car loans grew 14.3% to $135.7 billion, while used car loans grew 11.9% to $207.1 billion.
Gains among credit unions in new car sales came as overall unit sales of cars and light trucks fell 1.8%. U.S. dealers sold 17.3 million vehicles last year, below the record high set in 2016 at 17.5 million units. After last year’s drop in unit sales, sales for January through February are down 0.7%.
“Expect auto sales to slow to 17.1 million units in 2018, which is still above the 16.5 million sales rate that economists believe is the inherent long run demand,” the trends report said. “Factors supporting auto sales include: ample access to credit, low debt burdens, strong job growth, growing hourly earnings, rising stock prices and rising home prices.”
Also encouraging is low debt burdens. Household debt was 102% of disposable income in 2017’s third quarter, the lowest rate since the first quarter of 2002, according to the Federal Reserve’s Flow of Funds report. “This improvement in household debt should help the economy avoid a recession for the next couple of years,” the CUNA Mutual report said.

See you in Seattle

Thursday, March 1, 2018

F&A Federal Credit Union is seeking a President/Chief Executive Officer

F&A Federal Credit Union

President/Chief Executive Officer

Position Summary
F&A Federal Credit Union is seeking a strategic executive to lead the credit union in the role of President/Chief Executive Officer. Collaborating with the Board of Directors, this executive will be responsible for achieving the overall goals and objectives included in the strategic plan, maintaining the credit union’s financial health and stability, and for ensuring conformance with all applicable State and Federal laws. The ideal candidate is an experienced executive who is well versed in strategic leadership, exhibits strong motivational skills, is a team builder, and can lead organizational change while building consensus. A Bachelor’s Degree and a minimum of ten years executive experience within the credit union field or retail banking industry is required.
Read More 


F&A was chartered in 1936 to provide financial services to employees of the Los Angeles County Forestry, Fire and Agricultural Departments. From opening day assets of $26, F&A has grown to holdings in excess of $1.5 billion and over 44,000 members. In addition to employees and families of the Forestry, Fire, Agricultural and Weights & Measures Departments, F&A serves employees and families of cities that contract services with the LA County Fire Department, plus various other cities employees throughout Los Angeles County. As one of the largest credit unions in America, we've had a singular commitment for over 75 years:

See you in Seattle