Co-operate or Merge – Mountain Style

Today’s announcement from seven credit unions in the BC interior is a shocker and clear evidence that smaller, up country credit unions are in a strategic bind.  The announcement says that formal talks are underway to explore the potential for a merger of the seven credit unions; Columbia Valley, Creston, East Kootenay, Grand Forks, Heritage, Kootenay […]

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Director Training Trap

Central 1 is now canvasing credit unions on what the ‘mandatory’ director training program should look like.  The survey is well thought out and to be welcomed, but the implications and the potential conflicts of interests need to be considered.  The current one year Credit Union Director Achievement (CUDA) program will be expanded into a […]

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Trimming Excessive Home Ownership Subsidies

While the cost of housing has prompted much debate, too little attention is on the heavy subsidies granted to residential real estate investment and the way in which these subsidies have caused price inflation. Fortunately, the Government of Canada mortgage insurance program is being scaled back.  The restrictions introduced late in 2016 are ‘cooling the […]

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Are Real Credit Unions FCU*d?

Real credit unions may have to reconsider their strategic options. History was made with the FICOM approval of the Coast Capital Saving application to be ‘continued’ as a Federal Credit Union (FCU). This action has the potential to totally restructure the BC credit union system.  While the commission did say that would consider the impact […]

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New Government Decisions

As the new Minister of Finance, Carole James, has several issues on her plate.  The two simplest are getting attention, because they are listed in the direction given to her by the new premier.   One is taxation, reversing the scheduled increase that faces large credit unions that no longer qualify as ‘small business’.  And second, […]

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Cashless, the political counter argument

Communications professionals know that you can sell something if you give it a good ‘modern’ or ‘contemporary’ brand identity.  This is the spin we hear all the time regarding a ‘cashless society’.  Apparently convenience means more than anything else.  But there is a darker side to this proposition; the expanded role of large intermediaries (e.g. […]

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Makers and Takers

warning

The last few decades have seen a huge change in the ‘structure’ of our economy.  Rana Foroohar provides an accessible overview of the USA economy in her book Makers and Takers. She notes that over the last thirty years finance, and financial engineering, have come to dominate the world of business and traditional ‘maker’ industries, […]

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de-Banked

Watch out if you use the word ‘bank’.  On June 30th the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (“OSFI”) issued an advisory that re-asserted that the use of the words bank, banker, and banking are restricted under The Bank Act.  OSFI expressed displeasure at the expanded use of the words by non-banks and they […]

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Scrutinizing Governance

The leadership at Coast Capital Savings is pursuing the ‘journey’ to become a federal credit union.  A few members of Coast Capital have expressed some alarm at the manner in which the consent of members was pushed through to authorize the project.  I have also written a couple of posts (Bank?, and Sales Culture).   […]

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