Consumer News & Views
In this Issue…
Consumer Expectations for 2014 Improve as Consumer Confidence Increases. Consumers are more hopeful for an improved economic climate according to the American Consumer Council. A recent poll by ACC was supported by The Conference Board, which reports that its Consumer Confidence Index® rebounded in December to 78.1 (1985=100), up from 72.0 in November.
According to ACC’s December 8-12 poll of 1,542 members, consumers expressed a greater confidence in their economic growth in 2014 – up 6 percent from last year -- and improved job prospects for 2014 – up 7 percent from last year. However, the poll suggests that consumers are “not expecting a significant increase in their personal income for 2014” with only 24% stating that they will “earn more money in the new year.” Some 42% indicated their income will remain the same.
“It’s been an up-and-down year for consumers,” said Thomas Hinton, President of the 143,000 member American Consumer Council. He added, “On the one hand, the economic climate has improved slightly and consumers are more confident as we enter a new year. But, the key for economic success in 2014 will continue to be job growth and income growth for the average consumer. That remains questionable for 2014.”
Since its inception in 1934, the U S Postal
Service Federal Credit Union has been serving its members in and around the
Washington, D.C. area with exceptional financial products.
The U S Postal Service offers its members a full service website that allows for true "Banking From Home" functionality. Users have the ability to apply for loans, get account balance and history reports, transfer money between accounts, make bill payments, and so much more. Members can also take advantage of a full array of loans including real estate, business and new and used car loans. There are also many types of mortgages and credit cards available.
Members of the American Consumer Council may be eligible to join. Please see the credit union’s website at www.uspsfcu.org or contact them by phone at 301-856-5000, or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org to get exact membership details.
The U.S. Postal Service FCU’s vision is Service Excellence. They achieve their shared vision by believing and practicing the following shared core values:
ACC’s Friend of the Consumer Award Recognizes Outstanding Businesses in 2014.
Is your business consumer-friendly? Does your business deserve greater recognition for its service to consumers? If so, you should apply for the American Consumer Council’s Friend of the Consumer Award.
Throughout the year, ACC presents its "Friend of the Consumer" Awards. This prestigious award recognizes manufacturers, retailers, and other businesses that produce or sell products in the United States that meet or exceed federally-mandated standards and are touted by consumers as “consumer friendly.”
Each year, ACC awards numerous "Friend of the Consumer" Awards to deserving companies and organizations because they have "demonstrated a commitment to American consumers by providing a specific product or service that fosters consumer confidence and market acceptance."
To apply for the "Friend of the Consumer" award,
complete the online application and return it to ACC with the application fee.
Applicants will be notified within 5 days of receipt of their application.
Thereafter, a panel of independent judges will review your application and make
a formal recommendation within 25 days of receipt of your award application.
Welcome to Endura Financial Federal Credit Union… a great partner… a rich history!
Endura Financial Federal Credit Union is a federally chartered credit union, headquartered in Minneapolis with assets over $300 Million and more than 30,000 members. Members of the American Consumer Council may be eligible to join Endura!
Endura Financial Federal Credit Union: Exclusive Benefits Since 1929
Endura Financial Federal Credit Union was originally chartered by a small group of Honeywell employees in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Today – over 75 years later – we continue to serve our members with a range of products and services. Our purpose is strong: "To improve the financial health and simplify the lives of our members.” Take a look at how EFFCU has brought this to life over the years.
In 1954, after 25 years in operation, the Credit Union had grown to 4,745 members and nearly $800,000 in assets. In 1957, members were introduced to payroll deduction as a new option for loan installment payments. In January of 1965, the Credit Union went through its first name and identity change to become Honeywell Employees Credit Union.
In 1973, the Credit Union became completely automated. A payroll deduction savings plan was introduced to the membership in 1975. As of 1977, the Credit Union boasted just over 10,000 members. In 1978-1979, retirees were added into the Credit Union's field of membership and the Credit Union grew to $20 million in assets. In the 1980s, home equity loans and checking accounts were added to the Credit Union's list of available services.
In 1990, the Credit Union added the Brooklyn Center branch office. In 1992, to reflect changes occurring with the sponsor organization, the name changed from Honeywell Employees Credit Union to Honeywell/Alliant Techsystems Federal Credit Union. At that time, the credit union also went from state-chartered to federally-chartered credit union, regulated by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), an agency of the United States Federal Government. In the late 1990s two additional offices were opened at the Honeywell Golden Valley office and the Honeywell Ridgway office. In 1999, the name was changed to Honeywell Federal Credit Union.
On January 1, 2007, Honeywell Federal Credit Union became Endura Financial Federal Credit Union. During the summer of 2008 EFFCU moved the corporate office to its current location at 820 North Lilac Drive, Minneapolis, MN 55422. We also introduced our premier checking product, eLife Checking.
2009: During one of the most difficult economic years in recent history, Endura stays strong and steady, continuing to provide quality products and reliability to our members.
2010: Endura Financial Federal Credit Union re-launches the www.EnduraFinancial.com website introducing new online tools like a team-created blog (and other social networking tools) to stay in time – and touch – with a growing and evolving member base.
Today, with assets over $300 million, EFFCU is one of the largest credit unions in Minnesota. Our family of members includes various select employee groups, their immediate family members and retirees and people in several communities in Twin Cities and in Kansas City. We currently serve over 30,000 members and offer a full range of financial products and services at affordable rates.
Need a Consumer-friendly credit union? Look at what’s happening at Endura Financial...
Rates are low. Rent is high.
Home prices are rising—finally.
This is encouraging news for sellers, but...
Sellers are hoping for more.
The NAR reports that the number of available homes nationally is 25% lower than in June 2011. The MAR had similar findings, reporting that new listings were down 16.4% for the same period and the Minneapolis Association of Realtors June Report shows that there were 31.2% less homes to choose from in the Twin Cities.
That sounds like good news—and it kind of is. After all, fewer homes makes for higher demand, higher prices and bidding wars. Yet, it also means fewer sales. Still, while sellers sit out, builders are getting off the couch because...
Buyers are building.
Auto sales at full throttle!
If your rising odometer is causing some new-car dreams, you’re in good company. 2012 auto sales are zooming in the U.S.! Automotive News reported a 14% sales gain through July, and J.D. Power and Associates reported that July 2012 left July 2011 in the dust with a 20% rise. In fact, experts are cautiously optimistic that 2012’s new car sales will exceed 2011 by about 13%.
So, what’s driving these increased numbers?
Current marketplace trends show the following.
Endura Financial now offers VISA® credit card transaction alerts.
This service allows EFFCU VISA® Platinum cardholders to receive email alerts regarding activity on your VISA® credit card accounts; allowing you to actively manage your money and monitor for potential fraud. VISA® credit card holders will receive email alerts within seconds after specific transactions have taken place.
The email alerts will contain the Credit Union name, last four digits of your card number, and where applicable, merchant and amount details.
Cardholders can enroll in VISA® credit card transaction alerts through the online payment link, choose Online Services – Visa Transaction Alerts.
Note: Currently, this service is only available for credit cards and does not offer text transaction alerts.
American Consumer Council Adds 2 New Regional Offices in Oregon and
The American Consumer Council (ACC) has added two new regional offices in
Springfield, Massachusetts and Beaverton, Oregon to bring its 2013 regional
office expansion total to 9 new offices including: Hartford, CT; Silver Spring,
MD; Lexington, Kentucky; Atlanta, Georgia; Little Rock, Arkansas; New Orleans,
Louisiana; Tampa, Florida; San Antonio, Texas; and, Columbia, South Carolina.
Over the past year, ACC has created nine new regional offices at the following locations to better serve the needs of its growing membership and support its network of 44 state consumer councils. The American Consumer Council’s Washington, D.C., Newark, NJ and California offices have been in place for several years:
Green CSM Certification Accepting Applications for 2014 Spring Cycle:
If your company or organization would like to increase its credibility with consumers, you should consider applying for the Green CSM Certification. Applications for the 2014 Spring cycle are now being accepted through March 31, 2014.
It's a proven fact that consumers want to do business with companies that are eco-friendly and practice Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). The process is straight-forward and all applicants are recognized by ACC and the Green USA Institute.
All applicants complete the criteria and submit their responses to ACC's Green Consumer Council for review, assessment and feedback. Program details and the Green CSM Certification criteria can be viewed at ACC's website located at: http://americanconsumercouncil.org/greenc.asp