Tuesday, June 25, 2019

NCUA Chairman Rodney E Hood to Speak at the National Council of Firefighter Credit Unions Inc Conference

NCUA Chairman Rodney E. Hood will join our excellent list of speakers in Clearwater Beach, Florida this year. 

National Council of Firefighter Credit Unions Inc.

For a complete list of speakers and events,  Click Here


President Donald J. Trump nominated Rodney E. Hood for the NCUA Board on January 19, 2019. The U.S. Senate confirmed him on March 14, 2019, and he took the oath of office on April 8, 2019, and was designated as the eleventh NCUA Chairman by President Trump.

As NCUA Board Chairman, Mr. Hood also serves as a voting member of the Financial Stability Oversight Council. He also represents the NCUA on the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council and the Financial, Banking Information Infrastructure Committee.

Mr. Hood was previously nominated to the NCUA Board by former President George W. Bush and served from November 2005 until August 2009. He was appointed Vice Chairman by former NCUA Board Chairman JoAnn Johnson, and he served as the NCUA’s representative on the board of directors of NeighborWorks America.

Immediately prior to rejoining the NCUA Board, Mr. Hood served as a corporate responsibility manager for JPMorgan Chase, managing national partnerships with non-profit organizations, financial regulators, and community stakeholders to promote financial inclusion and shared prosperity in underserved communities throughout the United States.

His previous experience includes serving as associate administrator of the Rural Housing Service at the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In this role, he helped to address the housing needs in rural communities and administered the agency’s $43 billion mortgage portfolio.

Prior to his public service, Mr. Hood served as marketing director and group sales manager for the North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company in Durham, North Carolina. He also served as national director of the Emerging Markets Group for Wells Fargo Home Mortgage and served on the board of the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation. Earlier in his career, he worked for Bank of America as a Community Reinvestment Act officer and completed the management development program at G.E. Capital.

In addition to his public and private sector service, Mr. Hood served as a member of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Board of Visitors and as member of the UNC School of Arts Board of Trustees. He also served as a member of the Board of Trustees for the North Carolina Museum of Art and as a member of the Board of Governors for the University of North Carolina College System.
Mr. Hood’s professional awards include being named one of the “40 Young Leaders Under the Age of 40” by the Triangle Business Journal in Raleigh, North Carolina. He is also the first recipient of the “Dream Award,” an award given by the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation to honor individuals who have exhibited an outstanding commitment to affordable housing.

A native of Charlotte, North Carolina, Mr. Hood holds a bachelor’s degree in business, communications, and political science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

The Federal Reserve has opted to make no changes in interest rates

WASHINGTON–The Federal Reserve has opted to make no changes in interest rates following the conclusion of its meeting here, but it has indicated it could move as soon as next month to cut rates if the United States and China isn’t able to find ways to resolve their trade dispute. As a result,  For now, the Fed left its short-term rate at a range of 2.25% to 2.5%. Eight of the 17 votings, Fed policymakers did predict there could be as a half percentage point decline in rates in 2019.

In a statement following its meeting, the Fed did dial down a bit its forecast for the economy. 

 “In light of these uncertainties and muted inflation pressures, the FOMC will closely monitor the implications of incoming information for the economic outlook and will act as appropriate to sustain the expansion, with a strong labor market” and inflation near the Fed’s 2% goal,” the Fed said. 

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell in recent interviews has expressed concerns over what he called “cross-currents” in the economy. Inflation remains below the Fed’s goal of 2% annually, and the most recent jobs numbers were relatively small.
President Trump has recently announced plans to assess a 25% tariff on the remaining $300 billion in Chinese imports not already hit with such a tariff.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Ireland - Banks are charging credit unions as much as 65 basis points to keep their money on deposit meaning, for example, a credit union would pay €6,500 for every €1 million it has on deposit.

DUBLIN, Ireland–At least three-dozen credit unions in Ireland have imposed a limit on the deposits members can have, in some cases as low as €15,000, as a result of negative interest rates now in place at the country’s two largest banks.


The Irish Times reported it has identified 36 credit unions that have imposed the caps in order to limit any surplus funds they keep on deposit with the banks.

One of the banks, AIB, is charging corporate customers as much as 65 basis points to keep their money on deposit, the Irish Times reported, meaning, for example, a credit union would pay €6,500 for every €1 million it has on deposit.

A spokesman for the bank told the Irish Times it has tried to insulate “the vast majority of our customers from the impact of a sustained period of negative interest rates” but that there were “a relatively small number of larger depositors with whom AIB seeks to reflect the commercial realities of the negative interest rate environment.”

Bank of Ireland is reportedly charging depositors as much as 40 basis points (or a negative rate of 0.4 percent) on short-term deposits, the publication reported.

Credit unions are also blaming the Central Bank–which regulates credit unions in Ireland–for rules they say cut the amount of savings they can accept from members, arguing that for every €100 saved in the credit union, they have to set aside €10 as part of the regulator’s capital requirements.

Savings hit € 13.2 billion in March of this year, up 20% on 2008, while at the same time demand for lending has shrunk, the Irish Times reported. The Irish League of Credit Unions said loan dollars outstanding had declined from €6.4 billion in 2008 to €4.3 billion as of March this year.

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

NAFCU's Curt Long noted that strong gains in consumer spending may diminish the chances of a recession in 2019.

ARLINGTON, Va.—Total retail sales increased by 0.5% in May, and April's sales growth was revised upward from -0.2% to +0.3%. NAFCU's Curt Long noted that strong gains in consumer spending may diminish the chances of a recession in 2019.

Retail Sales

"Household saving rates are at normal levels, so any growth in real wages would represent an upside risk," said Long, NAFCU's chief economist and vice president of research, in a NAFCU Macro Data Flash report. "There are plenty of downside risks to fret over, from the trade war to energy prices to a weak May jobs report, but NAFCU believes a recession is not in the cards this year."

Year-over-year growth in retail sales was 3.2% in May, down from 3.7% in April. Core retail sales increased by 3.2% from a year ago, and auto and gas sales grew by 3.1%.

Core retail sales (excluding light vehicles and gasoline) increased 0.5% in May. Auto and gas sales increased by 0.6% during the month.

In the report, Long also examined current consumer trends and how they impact overall economic growth. 

"After a steep decline over the winter, shopping patterns seem to have stabilized. And although year-over-year growth of just over 3% is nothing to get too excited about, it is solidly positive in real terms. It also highlights the strength of the American consumer, who represents two-thirds of GDP," Long concluded.