Credit unions prospering even as banks fail

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When it comes to borrowing money, credit unions are my favorite place to go because of the quality personal service I receive. In the current credit industry, where the 10th bank this year recently closed, credit unions are faring well and even bragging about it.

BankRate.com looked into how credit unions are prospering while conventional banks are taking hits across the board. It found that the success was linked to credit unions being quicker to share best practices even with those in the same market, and due to the fact that the credit unions faced lower write-offs and delinquencies than traditional banks.

Not only are credit unions doing well in avoiding write-offs, but many of them are boasting increased membership. Further adding to the health of credit unions in a tumultuous environment is that for the first quarter of 2008, as a whole, they issued more loans than they have historically. Analysts place this rise on the willingness of credit unions to utilize their local knowledge and sit down with individuals in order to provide smart lending.

This throwback to the old-fashioned, highly human-involved method of banking may be one part of what protected the credit unions from the current fallout, not to mention a good way for individuals to continue to get loans to get the economy back on track, at least on a small scale.