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What is a credit union?
A credit union is a cooperative, non-profit financial institution formed under special statutory provisions and operates for the benefit of its' members. A credit union is called a non-profit cooperative because members share in the interest that is earned on loans and investments. As a member, you share in your credit union's success. Credit Unions look out for their members' interests and provide a level of service that is not generally available at other financial institutions. To date, credit unions serve over 200 million members worldwide. A credit union is owned mutually by its members, who save together and make loans to one another from the accumulated funds. The objective of the credit union is to help members manage their money by offering a place to save, by encouraging the intelligent use of credit, and by making available other financial services.
How does it work?
Each member's savings are "shares" in the Credit Union. Shares earn interest called "dividends." Individual share accounts are pooled and the money is distributed to members as loans. Some money is invested in areas permitted by the NCUA. From interest earned on loans and investments, the Credit Union pays its expenses and sets aside a reserve. The remaining income, called "available earnings," pays the dividends on savings at a rate that is often higher than what other financial institutions offer.
Who runs the Credit Union?
The Credit Union is controlled by a Board of Directors. Board members are unpaid volunteers elected from the membership. Other members are appointed by the Board to the Supervisory Committee.
It is the board's responsibility to set policy and give direction to the Credit Union. The Supervisory Committee audits the books and verifies individual accounts to ensure that board policy is carried out.
The Credit Union is administered by a paid staff which conducts the daily business of the operation from Duracell headquarters in Bethel, Connecticut as well as offices at the Barden Corporation in Danbury, Connecticut and Gillette in Boston, Massachusetts. Credit Union representatives are stationed at most of the manufacturing plants and office facilities of member companies.