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Maine CUs members react to economic events
PORTLAND, Maine (8/15/11)--Just as with credit unions nationwide, Maine credit unions were fielding questions from members about the recent debt-ceiling struggles, stock market volatility and the downgrading of the country’s credit rating by Standard & Poor’s, reported the Maine Credit Union League. The debt-ceiling issue caused the most concern to credit union members, according to a sampling of Maine credit union leaders. Many of the state’s credit unions reported receiving questions regarding federally insured deposits, and whether this would continue if no agreement had been reached to raise the debt-ceiling. The answer is “yes,” the league said (Weekly Update Aug. 12). Some members also expressed concern about receiving payments from the government. “In helping answer the phones last Wednesday, government payday, I talked to at least 25 people who just wanted to know if the government was paying them this month,” said Jim Lemieux, president/CEO of Sebasticook Valley FCU in Pittsfield. “Had Congress failed to reach an agreement, many credit unions I spoke with across the state were preparing to assist their members with no-interest loans and/or cover their federal checks until an agreement was reached,” said league President John Murphy. Kyle Casburn, President/CEO of Seaboard FCU in Bucksport, told the league he spoke with segments of his membership in recent weeks about the economic situation. “There is genuine concern from members and staff about the stock market plunge and the credit downgrade,” he said. “We are seeing some of what we saw in 2008 with an increase in deposits, especially from the more risk-averse members. I am providing our staff with timely and new information so they can pass it along to our members who have questions.”


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