TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (12/15/15)--The League of Southeastern Credit Unions (LSCU) served as a source for a recent Sun Sentinel article that outlined how the improving economy is fueling more loans from credit unions in South Florida.
"With the economy improving, you are seeing more consumers and credit union members looking to upgrade their cars and houses," Mike Bridges, LSCU vice president of communications, told the Sun Sentinel.
The article described how IBM Southeast CU (SECU), Delray Beach, Fla., awarded nearly $61 million in new loans in the first nine months of this year, almost triple the $21 million awarded during the same period last year.
"IBM is a big reason for the jump in loans in Palm Beach (County)," Bridges said.
The National Credit Union Administration released its Quarterly U.S. Map Review last week, which tracks performance indicators for federally insured credit unions in the 50 states and the District of Columbia. All 50 states reported positive median loan growth in the year ending Sept. 30, according to the NCUA.
Of the $79 million in loans written by Broward County’s 11 credit unions in the first three quarters, $32 million was loaned in the third quarter, according to LSCU data. Miami-Dade County's 17 credit unions loaned $64 million in the first three quarters, Bridges said.
As the credit market has improved, IBM SECU has offered more competitive loan rates, said Mike Miller, the credit union's president/CEO. One recent promotion offered car loan interest rates at 0.99%, he said.
Credit unions can offer low rates because they are nonprofit financial institutions, Miller told the paper.
The convenience of online loan applications has helped fuel loan growth, according to John V. Zells, IBM SECU executive vice president and chief marketing officer.