Evaluate the benefits and drawbacks to decide if a credit union is right for you.
What is the National Credit Union Administration?
The National Credit Union Administration charters, regulates and monitors all federal credit unions.
The overall mission of the NCUA is to ensure a safe, secure and trusted credit union system through its oversight and management. It also offers information on credit unions to consumers on its website, MyCreditUnion.gov.
The NCUA is a U.S. government agency founded in 1970. It’s responsible for almost 6,000 credit unions in the U.S. — with almost 105 million account holders, more than $1.3 trillion in assets and more than $847 billion in net loans — to ensure they are functioning properly and following federal regulations.
While that’s a tall order, the agency has another major function. The NCUA manages the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund, insuring the deposits of the account holders in all federal credit unions and the overwhelming majority of state-chartered credit unions.
In addition to overall monitoring and regulation, the NCUA also offers a wide variety of services to credit unions to help them function.
The NCUA is governed by a three-member board appointed by the president. The president also chooses who serves as chairman. Board members serve six-year terms, although members often remain until their successors are confirmed and sworn in.
The agency operates out of the five regional offices, in Albany, New York; Alexandria, Virginia; Austin, Texas; Tempe, Arizona, and Atlanta.
National Credit Union Administration example
In 2008 and 2009, the financial crisis put pressure on credit unions as it did on banks. Five of the largest wholesale corporate credit unions became insolvent after investing in troubled mortgage-backed securities.
In response, the NCUA rescued their mortgage-backed securities after liquidating the five failed credit unions.
In addition, it worked with the Treasury Department and Congress to establish a fund to stabilize the nation’s credit unions during and after the crisis, and to make sure that services continued to be provided to consumer credit unions.