CNN Favors Credit Unions Over Banks

Credit Unions were once again highlighted in the news this week on CNN. The story mentioned not only the favorable rates on savings accounts and share certificates but also on their credit cards. You can see just how good our rates are by visiting our Web site. Beyond the better rates though, people felt like they were treated better at a credit union. CNN Story

 One of the advantages of belonging to a credit union is that you are treated with care and respect. You know us and we know you – our children go to school together, we work together and care about our community together because we are locally owned and operated.

 As this year draws to a close, all of us at the Hopewell Federal Credit Union family would like to wish you and your family a safe and prosperous New Year!

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How Well Do You Know Your Credit Card?

This has been a busy news week for credit unions. A lot of the buzz started after Suze Orman visited Larry King Live and discussed the current credit card situation with him. “Everyone should start looking into a credit union credit card and do a balance transfer,” she said. In her opinion credit unions offered more favorable rates than banks.

On her Web site www.suzeorman.com she offers a lot of great information. Did you know that a credit card issuer can raise your rates if you miss a student loan payment, even if you paid the credit card on time? She also has a quiz to test how much you know about your credit card – that has some interesting facts. Take it to find out the answer to this question: Of the 12 largest bank-issued credit card companies in America, how many violate at least one provision of the Credit CARD Act?

Suze’s site also has a link to www.creditcardconnection.org where you can find out information about a particular credit union and their credit card. The credit cards are rated based on a five star rating scale as follows:

  1. Fixed or variable rates 18% and under.
  2. No penalty rate.
  3. No balance transfer fees.
  4. No annual fee.
  5. Late fees $25 and under.

I couldn’t be more pleased to tell you that Hopewell Federal Credit Union has a five star rating for our VISA card!

While Hopewell Federal is available to anyone who lives, works or worships in Licking County, for those of you who don’t meet that criteria you can go to www.CULookup.com to find a credit union that is available to you.

Holiday Spending

 

Seasons Greetings from Hopewell Federal Credit Union!

I came across this recently and thought I would share it. It’s interesting to note how people are handling the holiday shopping season in this economy.

According to an online poll conducted in November by the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC), consumers are much more concerned about paying down their existing debt load than they are with spending on holiday purchases.

More than 8,500 people responded to a Web poll, which asked “If you had an extra $500, would you…”

  • Pay down existing debt – 77%
  • Put it in savings – 14%
  • Use it toward holiday expenses – 7%
  • Spend it on yourself – 2%

A similar survey conducted in October by the NFCC showed that 68% of consumers intend to pay for their holiday purchases with cash, indicating that consumers are reluctant to charge.

The annual holiday survey from the Consumer Federation of America (CFA) and the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) showed similar results:

  • 43% of consumers said they intend to cut back their holiday spending, compared to 55% last year.
  • The 43% figure is still much higher than in the previous eight years of 2000 to 2007, a period when the percentage intending to spend less never exceeded 35% and dipped as low as 21% (in 2002).
  • A key reason for this intended spending restraint is how consumers assess their financial situation compared to last year. Far more consumers said their situation was worse (36%) than better (19%), though nearly half (44%) said their situation was about the same.

Just a little something to think about as we head into the holiday season.