WHAT IS A CREDIT UNION?

A credit union is a financial institution. Similar to other financial institutions, a credit union can offer a wide range of products and services such as savings (regular shares), checking, certificates of deposits (share term certificates), loan products, and much more. Other than the name of the products, there is not much of a difference between products by a credit union and a bank. So, what makes a credit union different from other financial institutions?

A Defined Field of Membership


A credit union has a field of membership and not everyone can simply walk up and open an account. Nikkei/Mabuhay Credit Union's field of membership includes those who meet the criteria listed below or who has a family member or household member who is already a member of the Credit Union.

  1. Employees and members of the Filipino American Chamber of Commerce of SouthBay Los Angeles Area (FACC-SLAA), Carson, California
  2. Persons of Japanese ancestry and their immediate family living in Los Angeles and Orange Counties, California; employees of this Credit Union and organizations of such persons. Immediate family shall include any family members related by blood, law or marriage, or residing within the same household.
  3. Those who pursue as their major occupation, in the County of Orange, the profession of gardening, landscaping, horticulturists, and/or nurserymen; full time employees of nurseries, landscapers, horticulturists, or gardeners; members of their families and organizations of such persons. Full-time employees are defined as persons who work at least 24 hours per week in the occupation stated above.
  4. Staff members of RED Boxing International Promotions
  5. Members of Dreamers & Visionaries of South Bay, Inc.
  6. Members of Cabanatuan City Association California, Inc.
  7. Members of Troy Philippines of University of Southern California
  8. Employees of Tambuli Corporation DBATambuli Market
  9. Members of Long Beach Parol Lantern Festival
  10. Members of Filipino Community of Carson (FCC)
  11. Members of ACLACI (Acacia Craftsmen of LA, CA Inc.)
  12. Members of Therapist Only Athletic Association (TOAA)
  13. Members of Filipino-American Chamber of Commerce of Hollywood (FACCHO)
  14. Members of Filipino-American Chamber of Commerce of Tri- County (FACC Tri-County)
  15. Members of Filipino-American Chamber of Commerce of Orange County (FACCOC)
  16. Members of Filipino-American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Los Angeles (FACC-GLA)
  17. Members of Philippine Eagle Dragon Boat Rowing Team
  18. Staff Members and Students of Pamana Kali, LLC
  19. Members of Kayumanggi Lions Club
  20. Staff members of Amor Yu Productions
  21. Employees and staff members of Search to Involve Pilipino Americans (SIPA)
  22. Members of Alpha Kappa Rho International Humanitarian Service Fraternity and Sorority Inc. (AKP, AKRHO, and SKEPTRON) - USA, West Coast Council, SoCal Chapter
  23. Employees and staff members of Rolly’s Tax Service, Inc.
  24. Members of Sister Cities Of Long Beach Inc Long Beach Bacolod Association (DBA)
  25. Members of Los Angeles Tanay USA Lions Club
  26. Members of Kagay-anons of Southern California
  27. Employees and staff members of Regal LNC, Inc.
  28. Philippine Independence Day Foundation, Inc. (PIDF)
  29. Members of Hompa Hongwanji Buddhist Temple
  30. Members of the Fellowship Basketball Association
  31. Employees and members of the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center, Los Angeles, California.
  32. Employees of Sushi Boy, Inc., Gardena, California.
  33. Employees of Array Systems, Inc., Torrance, California
  34. Employees of Nippon Express USA, Inc., Torrance, California
  35. Members of the Gardena Valley Baptist Church, Gardena, California
  36. Employees of Asahi Beer USA, Inc., Torrance, California
  37. Employees of Funai Corporation, Torrance, California
  38. Employees of F.K. Nursery, Los Angeles, California
  39. Employees of Fujitsu-Ten, Torrance, California
  40. Employees of Little Tokyo Service Center and LTSC CDC, Los Angeles, California
  41. Members of Faith United Methodist Church, Torrance, California
  42. Employees of Marukai Corporation
  43. Businesses owned by, or associations of, individuals who qualify for membership in the credit union.
  44. Other credit unions organized under either the Federal or State Laws appertaining to credit unions.




Member Owned, Not-for-Profit


A credit union is a cooperative wherein its members are its owners. The general membership is represented by an elected board of directors who are members themselves and serves without compensation for their time. Each member, regardless of their balances on their accounts, gets to cast one vote and are eligible to be nominated as a director. Unlike for-profit financial institutions the main focus of a credit union as an institution is not for profit. Its main focus is to ensure its financial stability and sustain its growth to continually provide financial products and services to its members. In the process of doing business the credit union does make a profit, however a credit union's profit does not go into the pocket of shareholders or select individuals. It goes back to the credit union in the form of capital to further its stability as an institution, to new products and services, or back to the general membership in the form of higher dividends, lower loan rates, and lower fees.




Credit Union Tax Exemption


As a Nikkei/Mabuhay Credit Union member, you can take advantage of lower rates, higher savings dividends, and low or no fees. Such benefits are available to members, in part, because Congress granted credit unions a long-standing exemption from taxation, and with good reason. Not-for-profit credit unions return profits to members, and are led by an all-volunteer Board of Directors who are not compensated for their services. Credit unions also help the financially under-served, including members with below-average incomes, or those with limited or damaged credit. Banks, however, earn billions in profit from customers of their choosing, and pass those profits on to stockholders.




Why Credit Union Tax Exemption is Fair


The American Bankers' Association claims that the tax exemption gives credit unions an unfair advantage in the marketplace and hurts banks. But statistics tell a different story: Federally insured credit unions had $662.4 billion in assets as of March 31, 2005. FDIC-insured institutions held over $10.2 Trillion in assets, and last year these institutions grew by an amount that exceeds the total assets of all credit unions combined. Additionally, the growth of not-for-profit credit unions is a direct result of keeping our promise to serve the financially under-served.




Credit Union Tax Exemption Broad Support


Historically, credit unions have had broad support from Congress. In fact, Congress reaffirmed the tax exemption status of credit unions in 1998. However, led by the Bankers' Association, a subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee met last November with the sole intention of reviewing the credit unions' tax exempt status. For now, no recommendation has been made. But if our tax-exemption were revoked, our not-for-profit status and your credit union advantage would be in jeopardy. As in all financial matters that affects you, we will keep you informed about this issue and work hard to protect your interests. A credit union is a financial institution. Similar to other financial institution, a credit union can offer a wide range of products and services such as savings (regular shares), checking (share draft), certificates of deposits (share term certificates), loan products, and much more. Other than the name of the products, there is not much of a difference between products by a credit union and a bank. So, what makes a credit union different from other financial institutions?





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Advancing Prosperity for Nikkei and Mabuhay Communities

Nikkei Credit Union

 866.4NIKKEI (866.464.5534)

 

18425 S. Western Avenue 2nd Floor
Gardena, CA 90248

NMLS #504681

 

Mabuhay Credit Union

888.MABUHAY (888.622.8429)

146 W. Carson Street

Carson, CA 90745

NMLS #504681

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