Secondary Capital Not a "Magic Pill"

Credit Union Journal Daily Briefing  |  Friday, October 1, 2010

SAN ANTONIO – Secondary, or supplementary, capital for credit unions has been a longtime goal of the National Association of State Credit Union Supervisors, but its likelihood seemingly has been a long way off. But now the group feels it’s closer than ever to becoming reality.

“We still have to work with Congress, Treasury and the NCUA,” said NASCUS President Mary Martha Fortney. “But CUNA and NAFCU are on board.”

NASCUS Chairman Tom Candon, who is Vermont’s state regulator, noted House Banking Committee Chairman Barney Frank has indicated an interest in the issue, and asked where NCUA stood on it. NCUA has supplied a letter to Frank indicating its support. Separately, NCUA board member Gigi Hyland recently oversaw a working group’s white paper on the topic, as well.

“We keep trying to educate on this issue,” said Fortney. “It is not for every credit union and it’s not a magic pill. And even if we got supplemental capital today it would be another year and a half before it was available to be put in place.”