Credit Unions Still Outpoll Banks, Thrifts When It Comes
American Banker/Gallup Consumer Survey 2000 (09/00) Vol. 16, No. 8 p.16A; Mandaro, Laura

This year's American Banker/Gallup Consumer Survey finds that credit unions still have higher poll numbers than banks and thrifts as far as customer service goes--some 79 percent of credit union customers said they were "very satisfied" on that point, as opposed to 53 percent for banks and 51 percent for thrifts. Industry watchers said consumer dissatisfaction with banks and thrifts stems largely from the merger and acquisition activity in recent years, while credit unions have the advantage of not having to put out earnings reports every quarter, as well as the culture that everyone at the credit union is a "member." In addition, credit union customers are implicitly showing they favor the credit union model when they sign up for the service. However, credit unions face the problem of consumers having pushed up their standards for service, which is not as much of a problem for banks and thrifts. Meanwhile, the survey finds that banks have held steady with regard to consumers' satisfaction with competitive service charges and fees and have improved with regard to competitive loan and deposit rates.

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