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Newtek, 10 CU CEOs Give Small Biz Advice On Nerdwallet
MADISON, Wis. (2/13/13)--Chief executive officers from 10 credit unions and CUNA Strategic Services provider Newtek: The Small Business Authority are among those helping with advice for small businesses in a new series on business lending.

The series features interviews with 31 CEOs that do business with small businesses or offer business loans. The Credit Union National Association and the state leagues provided NerdWallet with credit union contacts for the articles.

Member business lending (MBL) is one of CUNA's top advocacy issues this year, with CUNA, the state leagues, and credit unions urging Congress to raise credit unions' 12.25%-of-assets MBL cap to 27.5% so credit unions can work with more small businesses.

In the lending predictions article, credit unions addressed the MBL cap. The cap "limits our ability to grow further in this area…Otherwise, there will continue to be less competition in the small business lending space, which might lead to higher rates and fees," said Christina Lethlean, president/CEO of Gesa CU, Richland, Wash.

CoastHills FCU, in Lompoc, Calif., will hit its MBL cap in 18-24 months, said Jeff York, CEO. "This is unfortunate considering the local pull-back of community banks and big banks in the small business lending arena." He noted that "Congress is unwilling to do what they promised on the campaign trail--provide small businesses with the tools they need to prosper. Increasing or removing the business lending cap will do just that--give small business access to billions of dollars in capital, help small businesses create tens of thousands of jobs and all this without costing taxpayers a dime."

Jim Minge, president/CEO of Texas Trust CU, Mansfield, Texas, said the lending cap increase "would make an additional $13 billion available for lending to small businesses. This investment would certainly result in new jobs and economic growth."

Other credit union and Newtek executives interviewed included:

  • Mark Antonioli, Meriwest CU, San Jose, Calif.;
  • Brad Canfield, KeyPoint CU, Santa Clara,Calif.;
  • Gary Grinnell, Corning (N.Y.)  FCU;
  • Brett Martinez, Redwood CU, Santa Rosa, Calif.:
  • Stephen O'Connell, North Island CU, San Diego, Calif.;
  • Barry Sloane, Newtek Business Services, New York, N.Y.;
  • Steven Stapp, San Francisco (Calif.) FCU; and
  • Patsy Van Ouwerkerk, Travis CU, Vacaville, Calif.
The series includes four "sidebar" articles featuring CEOs answers about: Financing Advice (a roadmap of where to go, when, what to consider), Loan Advice (how business owners can make themselves better loan candidates), General Business Advice, and Lending Predictions.

To view the articles, use the links.

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