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CUs at top of the heap in new Kellogg Trust Index
CHICAGO (8/6/10)--Credit unions are at the top of the heap--again--in the latest consumer poll on trustworthiness. This time 62% of American consumers surveyed said they trust credit unions. That compares with 57% for local banks, 35% for national banks and 27% for banks in which the government has a stake, according to the June poll by the Chicago Booth/ Kellogg School Financial Trust Index. Credit Union National Association President/CEO Bill Cheney said the index findings are timely and that he hopes they help to further raise consumer awareness about credit unions. "Especially today, in the wake of the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression, people want a financial institution they can trust to look out for their best interests. They only need look as far as their credit union, as we have long known and emphasized, and as the latest Kellogg Trust Index results have made clear," he said.
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The poll found that trust in America's financial system is at its highest point since the survey began in 2008, with 26% of Americans saying they trust the financial system. That's a three-percentage-point hike from March's index. The percentage of consumers who trust credit unions has steadily risen since the survey began (See chart). Credit unions were four percentage points above from their position as most-trusted in March. In December, credit unions were trusted by 56% of consumers surveyed, and in March, they were trusted by 58%. "Clearly consumers--increasingly--are recognizing the great deal, sound management and safety that credit unions offer their members and their money. Our hope is that more and more Americans jump on the bandwagon and move their money to a credit union," Cheney said. In the March poll, credit unions were the only institutions that experienced an increase in consumers' trust. In the latest survey, all four types of institutions saw the level of trust rise. Banks--especially the bottom-feeder national banks and banks with a government stake--experienced bigger percentage-point increases. However, they are so low on the trustworthiness gauge they would have to travel much farther before surfacing next to credit unions' level of trustworthiness. The latest poll covers April to June.
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