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Noting closing Mica says CUs can help consumers
WASHINGTON (7/14/08)—News late Friday that the Office of Thrift Supervision closed IndyMac Bank, F.S.B., Pasadena, Calif., underscores the need for the U.S. Congress to explore ways to increase credit availability for consumers, said Credit Union National Association President/CEO Dan Mica. Mica said that as the economy experiences a credit crunch in many sectors, credit unions stand "ready, willing and able to help alleviate the problem and promote economic growth." He said that willingness could be enhanced to the benefit of the consumer by two legislative proposals currently pending congressional action. He urged Congress to support provisions contained in the Credit Union Regulatory Improvements Act (H.R. 1537, S. 2967) that would improve a current 12.25%-of-assets cap on member business lending (MBL) by raising it to 20% of assets. He also urged lawmakers to exempt from the cap MBLs made in underserved areas. Mica also noted the value of prompt corrective action reform, changing the current system to one that more accurately reflects risk. Such a change, Mica said, could free up more funds that could be turned into loans for credit union members. In its announcement the OTS named Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) conservator of the closed institution. The FDIC will transfer insured deposits and substantially all the assets of IndyMac Bank, F.S.B., Pasadena, CA, to IndyMac Federal Bank, FSB. The OTS statement said: Brokered deposits will be held by the FDIC and those insured deposits will be paid off when the insurance determination is complete. IndyMac Bank, FSB had total assets of $32.01 billion and total deposits of $19.06 billion as of March 31, 2008. As conservator, the FDIC will operate IndyMac Federal Bank, FSB to maximize the value of the institution for a future sale and to maintain banking services in the communities formerly served by IndyMac Bank, F.S.B. Insured depositors and borrowers will automatically become customers of IndyMac Federal, FSB and will continue to have uninterrupted customer service and access to their funds by ATM, debit cards and writing checks in the same manner as before. On-line and phone banking services this will be operational on Monday. Loan customers should continue making loan payments as usual. Starting today, IndyMac Federal Bank, FSB's 33 branches will observe normal operating hours and will continue to offer full banking services, including on-line banking. For additional information, the FDIC has established a toll-free number for customers of IndyMac Federal Bank, FSB. The toll-free number is 1-866-806-5919.

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