LANSING, Mich. (7/10/14)--Michigan's credit unions showed strong growth in the first quarter--buoyed by small-business lending that at $1.7 billion was 20% more than the same period last year.
"Supporting our communities is a vital component of the credit union difference. Helping small businesses grow and thrive is a key part of that mission," said David Adams, Michigan Credit Union League and Affiliates CEO.
Over the past 10 years, small-business loan growth has climbed steadily in Michigan to $1.7 billion in 2014 from $875 million in 2010 and $200 million in 2004.
In cooperation with the Michigan Business Connection, Lake Trust CU, a $1.6 billion-asset credit union in Brighton, granted a loan to Shirley Decker Prescott; her husband, Mert Prescott; and son, Brandon Decker. Shirley and Mert both lost their jobs in the grocery industry and decided to open their own meat and seafood market. Funding was a challenge until Lake Trust CU approved the loan.
Three years later, Mert's Specialty Meats is thriving with two locations in Okemos and Lansing. "We have customers every day who thank us for being here," Shirley said.
Small-business loans are just one of the lending categories that is improving in the first quarter.
New-vehicle loans totaled $1.8 billion, a more than 10% boost from $1.6 billion a year ago. Used-autos also are up to $5.8 billion from $5 billion year-over-year.
Credit unions continue to provide mortgages to Michigan residents with fixed-rate mortgages coming in at $7.9 billion in the first quarter, a 10% increase from the same time last year.
Membership continues to expand as well--4.6 million Michiganders are credit union members, showing an increase of 83,245 members from a year ago.