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August 2023

    A Note from Chris

    Membership represents the power of collaboration, the strength of shared values, and the opportunities to grow together. As you begin planning your 2024 budget, goals, and strategic initiatives, please know that Corporate Central and our forward-thinking family of CUSOs offer customized solutions that can help your credit union thrive. The value of membership comes in different forms. It may be a line of credit for settlement and liquidity needs, or competitive and flexible short- and long-term investment options. Or it may be Corporate Central’s history of consistently paying industry-leading rates on capital accounts or the innovative service offerings from our CUSOs – InterLutions, Think|Stack, and QuantyPhi. The bottom line is credit unions are not joining for attention grabbing “hot rates” or one-time discounted fees, but rather the value we strive to deliver day in and day out. We are not a vendor, or just a service provider; we are a credit union – YOUR credit union, and we only exist to serve you. We value and honor your support and your partnership.


    Chris Felton

    Did You Know?

    Since the launch of the CU-Save program, InterLutions has helped credit unions save over $30 million.
    InterLutions, a CUSO providing contract renegotiation and cost reduction services, has continued to deliver eye-opening savings for its credit union clients. Since the launch of the program in 2017, InterLutions has helped 80 credit unions save over $30 million. The solution is called CU-Save and partners with the industry-leading advisory firm SRM to review third-party vendor contracts to realign pricing, increase incentives and income, and remove restrictive service requirements leading to a much improved and mutually beneficial agreement. The powerful combination of inside experience and proprietary benchmarking delivered savings in the six-figure range for several of its participating credit unions with most being able to retain their preferred service partners with zero impact to service levels and no operational disruption. Utilizing an archive of invoice data and payments analytics, along with a software database of industry benchmarks, the CU-Save contract negotiation team leverages the power of data to help credit unions significantly lower their operational expenses.

    Learn More

    Technology Solutions
    Zero-trust for credit unions: preparing for when, not if, a cyber event happens.
    Cyberattacks are increasingly targeting small and mid-sized businesses. In 2022, 82% of ransomware attacks were targeted at companies with less than 1,000 employees. One of the biggest ways a credit union can future proof their cybersecurity architecture is by shifting their thinking, and their cybersecurity approach, to Zero-Trust Architecture (ZTA).

    What is Zero-Trust Architecture (ZTA)?
    ZTA is a fundamental shift in your credit union’s approach to cybersecurity. Prior security models were flawed with assumptions that threats could be kept out. We were far too trusting to believe that we could always be ahead of a cyberattack and keep bad actors out.

    A ZTA treats every aspect, device, service, and user of a network, as continuously exposed and potentially compromised, and seeks to address the following key principles:

    • Continuous verification. Always verify access, all the time, for all resources.
    • Limit the “blast radius.” Minimize impact if an external or insider breach does occur.
    • Automate context collection and response. Incorporate behavioral data and get context from the entire IT stack (identity, endpoint, workload, etc.) for the most accurate response.

    Benefits of adopting ZTA.
    By adopting zero-trust principles, credit unions can reduce their risk of data breaches and other security incidents, while also ensuring that their networks are always running efficiently. This can help reduce costs and improve productivity, while also minimizing the damage done by a successful cyberattack.

    How can my credit union start the journey?

    • Begin with an assessment and planning workshop (Think|Stack can help).
    • Build your cyber risk appetite and confidentiality, integrity, and availability (CIA) priorities.
    • Design a roadmap to deploy your ZTA. Many credit unions start with: identity and access management, network access control, and educating their teams.

    Ready to learn more about ZTA? Visit us at www.Think|Stack.co.

    Employee Benefit Resources
    Employee benefits solution designed specifically for small credit unions.
    Are you tired of the never-ending struggle with soaring healthcare costs? Say goodbye to uninspired insurance options that drain your resources while the insurance carriers profit. It's time for a change! Introducing the I-Care Health Plan – a revolutionary employee benefits solution designed specifically for small credit unions like yours.

    Small credit unions and their employees continue to pay more for health insurance while the carriers continue to profit. Large insurance networks struggle to scale down and deliver competitive plans for small credit unions; while small insurance providers often deliver un-tailored and high-cost products that don’t fit the needs of small employers.

    Formed by credit unions for credit unions, I-Care is a collaborative employee healthcare solution that allows you to provide better benefits at a lower cost. When you become an I-Care credit union, your employees become part of a larger pool of credit union healthcare users. Pooling with other credit union employees helps reduce claim risk and volatility of premiums. It lowers costs for your employees and your credit union. Those lower costs allow you to give your staff the benefits they deserve.

    Plan renewals are just around the corner. Don’t wait until it’s too late! Call us today for a complimentary consultation customized to your credit union’s needs.

    Contact Us

    Financial Services Consulting

    Solid liquidity management has become critical to the success of all credit unions.
    The bond market remained fairly calm in July in the midst of another 25-basis point rate hike by the Fed and a mixed bag of economic data. The Fed announced that it was shifting to a data dependent policy when it took its first pause after ten consecutive rate hikes last month. During the month, the data reflected mixed signals as the employment data saw non-farm payroll come in below expectations but was accompanied by higher than projected wage growth. Both consumer and producer price indexes were reported below forecast at +3.0% and +2.4% respectively. One of the Fed’s preferred inflation indexes, the PCE Core Deflator Index, also slowed to a 4.1% annual pace. Data continued to show resilient consumer spending as 2Q GDP was reported well above expectations at +2.4% driven by strong personal consumption of +1.6%. Durable goods orders rose at a 4.7% pace, more than three times forecast. Personal income was reported slightly less than projected at +0.3% for the month but personal spending came in above forecasts at +0.5%.

    The Fed stated they will remain data dependent for future rate moves. Fed Chair Powell outlined that they see labor demand remaining strong but wage growth easing with labor participation up, consumer spending continuing but that it has been more restrained, and inflation has been moderating but still has “a long way to go.” The market reacted mildly to the news with rates little changed and futures pointing to about a 30% probability of one more rate hike in the months ahead followed by a Fed pivot and aggressive easing in 2024. As Chair Powell pointed out in his post hike press conference, they will have two sets of economic data available before their next policy meeting in September.

    The Fed has now pushed rates 525 basis points higher since they began their fight to tame inflation last March. With the possibility of a rates “higher for longer” policy by the Fed going forward, it is no surprise that solid liquidity management has become critical to the success of all credit unions. QuantyPhi’s Liquidity Framework Review was created in July to help members in critical areas of liquidity management. Key features include comprehensive analysis, customized recommendations, regulatory compliance, risk evaluation, and training and support. If you need help with your liquidity policy and procedures, contact us to have our highly trained analysts help you get to where you need to be.

    Contact Us

    What’s Trending?

    Is your credit union challenged to attract younger members and workers?
    Credit unions need to pay attention to six emerging trends to attract and retain younger members and workers. This is clearly a global concern, judging from the reaction of credit unions gathered for the World Credit Union Conference. Kim Lear, a researcher focused on generational change and the founder of Inlay Insights, said these are the six trends shaping the next era of work and markets.

    Read the Article

    Credit Unions Connect
    Stories that exemplify the movement

    Supporting local farmers.

    Team members from Heartland Credit Union celebrated their hard-working, local farmers at the annual Iowa County Farmers Appreciation Day. They had a great time, and they are proud to partner with many Wisconsin growers and producers.

    Caring for the community.

    Partnership Financial Credit Union proudly presented a donation to the Leyden Family Service & Mental Health Center. They provide counseling, treatment, and preventative care services for the community.

    Read More Credit Union Stories

    What’s New and Who’s Who

    Corporate Central welcomes Amy Nowak as Human Resources Generalist.

    Headshot of Amy Nowak.

    We are pleased to announce and welcome Amy Nowak as a Human Resources Generalist. Amy oversees day-to-day operations and administration of human resources policies, procedures, and programs. She leads and supports various human resources functions, including recruiting, new hire onboarding/orientation, performance management, compensation, and benefits. She collaborates with leadership to develop strategies to stay up to date with the latest HR trends and practices, and she administers payroll processing and supports HRIS database management and maintenance. Amy had the honor of teaching elementary students for 27 years with 21 of those years in the West Allis-West Milwaukee School District. She earned her bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from Edgewood College in Madison. She then went on to earn her master’s degree in Education from UW- La Crosse. Outside of work, Amy enjoys spending time with her husband, Brian, and their two children Shannon and Max. She also loves to read books and to travel to new places. Welcome, Amy!

    Corporate Central welcomes Justin Burns as Software Engineer.

    Headshot of Justin Burns

    We are also excited to introduce Justin Burns as a Software Engineer. Justin creates, codes, tests, debugs, maintains, and troubleshoots complex applications to meet business requirements. He designs and develops business intelligence systems and database systems and designs and maintains front-end user interfaces. In addition, he provides support to systems’ end users to identify complex problems and recommend appropriate resolutions. Justin graduated from UW-Madison with a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science. He has two years of experience as a front-end development intern, and two years of stack development full-time. Outside of work, Justin loves traveling and being outside. In the summer, he enjoys going on walks or runs with his dog, wakeboarding, fishing, playing golf, or playing tennis. In the winter, he enjoys playing indoor soccer, watching movies, or playing video games. He also recently got into woodworking. Welcome, Justin!

    Learn More About Our Team

Upcoming Events

NASCUS – WI Executive Forum

3/12/2024 9:00 AM - 3/12/2024 3:00 PM Central Time (CST) | TruStage 5810 Mineral Point Road Madison, WI 53705

NASCUS, the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions Office of Credit Unions, and the Wisconsin Credit Union League are hosting this full-day collaborative meeting to bring industry leaders and directors across our state system together to discuss the most pressing issues facing our industry today.

Monthly Market Monitor

3/13/2024 3:30 PM - 3/13/2024 4:00 PM Central Time (CST) | Webinar

The Monthly Market Monitor is a webinar geared toward credit union investment managers. It will provide up-to-date economic highlights, yield curve analysis, investment product recommendations, and outlook.

Debunking Health Plan Renewal Myths | Webinar

3/19/2024 11:00 AM - 3/19/2024 11:30 AM Central Time (CST) | Webinar

Join InterLutions, the industry’s premier employee benefits CUSO, as they debunk three common myths relating to health plan renewals

Making Your Email Marketing More Effective: A Guide for Credit Unions

3/19/2024 2:00 PM - 3/19/2024 3:00 PM Central Time (CST) | Webinar

Join us for our “Making Your Email Marketing More Effective: A Guide for Credit Unions" webinar and in just one hour you will learn beyond the basics and understand how to really amplify the email marketing messages you send.

Investments 201 Webinar Series

3/21/2024 2:00 PM - 3/21/2024 2:45 PM Central Time (CST) | Webinar

Join QuantyPhi for the Investments 201 Webinar Series, a monthly deep dive into the world of balance sheet and investment portfolio management.

Why 45 Small Credit Unions Chose a CUSO’s Health Plan | Webinar

5/21/2024 1:00 PM - 5/21/2024 1:30 PM Central Time (CST) | Webinar

Join InterLutions for a complimentary 30-minute webinar to learn how our customized solutions are helping small credit unions offer affordable and quality employee health plans.

Credit Union Day at the Ballpark 2024

8/11/2024 1:10 PM Central Time (CST) | American Family Field 1 Brewers Way Milwaukee, WI 53214

Credit Union Day at the Ballpark 2024

2024 Economic Outlook Conference

Thursday, September 12, 2024, All Day Central Time (CST) | The Ingleside Hotel 2810 Golf Road Pewaukee, WI 53072

Save the date for Corporate Central's 2024 Economic Outlook Conference.

Our Family of CUSOs

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