Tough Times in Licking County

I’m not sure about you, but I still see some tough times ahead for those of us in Licking County. This past week we lost a long time company, the Chesrown auto dealership went out of business, a victim of the times. And Moore’s Pizza , who has also been in the area for 20 years, also went out of business. These two companies are just the latest victims of the economic downturn.

On the national level, Chrysler finally filed for bankruptcy and will try to somehow re-organize itself and get back in the market. And by the end of this month, GM’s fate will become clear, that’s the deadline that President Obama’s team gave them to get their plan into place. No matter how it goes for the future of either of these companies, it seems like the UAW will have to be a willing partner and make some tough choices.

This week the stress test sfor several of the largest banks will be released. Looks like some of them will have to raise more capital. I guess they are not out of the woods yet. So how’s the credit union doing during these tough times? We are doing very well. Our member deposits are growing at a 25% annual rate and our loans to members are growing by 12.5% annual rate. It appears that our members still know a good deal when they see it and that’s credit union membership. Our mortgage business is very good, as we help members refinance their existing mortgage or help them get a mortgage to buy a home.

I was recently invited to the Governor’s Residence for a private reception with him. There were about 40 to 50 financial institution officers there. The governor told us that he appreciates what we do to help the consumers and businesses in Ohio. There were positive comments for credit unions who did not start the mortgage problems, but can help solve them. This was the first time that I shook the hand of our governor. I must admit, I felt honored to be invited to this gathering. And I’m hopeful that a turnaround is coming for Licking County.

We understand that times are tough, that’s why now, more than ever, you’ll want to discover the difference of a credit union membership.

Have a great week.

– Al

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