As the world co-operative movement is observing Co-operatives Week, World Credit Union Day is also being observed on Oct. 20.
Synergy Credit Union is celebrating the occasion with free snacks, coffee, giveaways and 2023 calendars at all their locations on Thursday.
CEO Glenn Stang says,”every branch will have a little something that’s different, like local flavours or resources that they know the membership likes.”
Listing things which they are celebrating, Synergy will be marking their 80th year in 2023 and the credit union has also been nominated for an ABEX Award for community involvement. As well, Canada’s credit unions for the 18th year has been recognized with the IPSOS financial customer service excellence award, adds Stang.
Stang addresses economic concerns like inflation saying that people are slowing things down and watching their purchases, along with their concern over interest rates as the Bank of Canada continues to soak up liquidity.
“As far as the interest rates go, again we have been encouraging members in variable rate mortgages to lock in. Rates are probably going to go up in the shorter term versus down; just to protect themselves from further payment increases.”
Stang notes that interest rates are still at pre-pandemic levels, but the Bank of Canada is still signalling more interest rate hikes in the next little while to encourage a deflation rather than inflationary pressure.
Stang shares that the Bank of Canada actions could take effect early next year. He details some more steps people can take in a recession.
“Members are asking the question,”Well how do we behave and act during a recession?” A lot of it comes down to being very prudent – diligent with your money and trying to minimize payment increases. Sometimes you have to choose between what’s necessary and what’s nice to have in order to balance your home budget.”
As credit unions worldwide celebrate their achievements, Stang points to the co-operative values which sees Synergy returning 20 per cent of their profits to members each year and as well, five per cent of profits are set aside for community projects including student scholarships.