Statement by Wisconsin Credit Union League President & CEO Brett
Reaction to the Wisconsin Bankers Association’s response to
the League’s April 8 press release citing credit unions’
successful efforts to meet small businesses’ borrowing
Pewaukee, Wis. –
“Credit unions are eager to be part of a solution that keeps small
businesses healthy and that keeps people in their jobs. Banks want to
prevent that – all to the detriment of the Wisconsin economy and
working families,” said Brett Thompson, President & CEO of the
Wisconsin Credit Union League.
“It’s déjà vu all
over again. The Wisconsin Bankers Association keeps repeating the same
factual inaccuracies over and over, apparently believing that tireless
repetition will somehow make the statements true and deflect attention
from banks’ recent poor performance in serving Wisconsin’s
businesses and working families. Instead, it just weakens their
credibility even more.
“The bottom line
• Wisconsin credit
unions’ business lending was not subject to any cap for credit
unions’ first 70 years of existence. Since the cap was put in
place in 1998 there has been no evidence of systemic risk due to credit
unions’ business lending.
• In fact, the data we now
have suggests to the contrary, illustrating more clearly banks’
recent financial woes. In 2009, banks’ loan losses were 2.36%
compared to just .59% for credit unions.
• Regulators and small
businesses alike support lifting the cap because it is good public
policy. There’s no cost to taxpayers and the banks are not
providing a solution.
“It’s time we ask ourselves
– who do we believe? It’s either banks, that generate record
profits when the economy is strong but turn their backs when working
families struggle, or not-for-profit financial cooperatives that support
working families regardless of the prevailing economic