Credit Union Technocracy

Technocracy is replacing democracy in our credit union world. The proud claims to consumer co-operative ownership are hollowing. The roles for member-owners and their representatives (elected directors) have narrowed. These changes have political and other implications. Our recent BC Advocacy Day delegation reflected the changing nature of our BC credit union system. Credit union executives […]

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Divided Allegiance (CCUA)

The Canadian Credit Union Association (CCUA) is conflicted. It says that it champions the successful future of (a) provincial credit unions and (b) federal credit unions, but it is not that simple. Unfortunately, a federal credit union growth strategy is based upon cannibalising the provincial credit union systems. In this last year the CCUA assumed […]

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Fragile FI’s

BC credit unions have declining political leverage. Banks and credit unions are created and nurtured as political accommodations. Banks are rooted in the constituencies they serve and the political clout of those constituencies, for good or bad. This is the core premise of Fragile by Design: The Political Origins of Banking Crises and Scarce Credit, […]

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Ownership Lost

On paper, credit unions are ‘consumer owned’, but the reality is something different.  Cooperative ownership is the unique feature of this form of business, each member-owner has one vote in major decisions, but as credit unions grow the ‘owners’ are eased out.  Their control over the business is lost.  In truth, consolidation means that member-owners, […]

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A Wealthy Person’s Housing Strategy

Canada’s housing strategy is rigged to favour those with big homes and wealth.  We unfortunately argue about the small amounts that are expended on those who really need help, missing the real point.  I applaud those who call the government to account.  Today a blog post at policynote.ca details how the most wealthy have benefited […]

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Credit Union Burdens and Truths

The Ministry of Finance released it’s set of proposals for ‘revising’ the Financial Institutions Act and the Credit Union Incorporation Act back in March.   Credit unions and others were invited to comment.  I took part in some of the credit union system discussions and I think the ‘credit unions of BC’ provided a polite and […]

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Mortgage Maze

A recent item in the Globe and Mail clearly itemizes the unnecessary complexity regulators have introduced into the mortgage marketplace.  The OSFI B20  guideline succeeds in making mortgage qualification, rate comparison, and prepayment penalty regimes less borrower friendly.  The new guideline may ‘protect consumers’ from themselves and protect banks from excessive risk taking.  However, we […]

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