CUs consistently trustworthy, Harris Poll reinforces

October 30, 2014

NEW YORK (10/31/14)--Credit unions as a whole continue to be held in high regard by consumers when it comes to trustworthiness, according to a Harris Poll released Thursday.

Nearly half of respondents said their trust in credit unions has remained consistent over the past few years, and 25% said they trusted credit unions more. Meanwhile, 50% reported having less trust in banks, and 57% had less trust in Wall Street.

The Harris Poll surveyed 2,537 U.S. adults online between Aug. 13 and 18.

Credit unions, which keep money and services local, appear to benefit from location as more than three-quarters of respondents had some or a great deal of trust in local credit unions.

Local credit unions are most trusted by the 69-and-over demographic and baby boomers at 85% and 83%, respectively. However, all age ranges--from 18 to 69-plus--put credit unions above regional banks, local branches of big national banks, big national banks and online-only banks.

Two-thirds say that personal experience drives the level of trust with financial institutions, which aligns with the member-focused service that credit unions pride themselves on.

Credit unions come in with a solid 33% of respondents as members. Similar numbers were seen this summer as the Credit Union National Association tracked the movement's 100-millionth membership, a number equating to a third of the U.S. population.

Big national banks, despite being among the least trustworthy, still hang on to 45% of respondents as customers. Only 1 in 10 report using an online-only bank.