Altura Reports 2012 Financial Results

Posted on January 23, 2013

Best in the Organization's History

(Riverside, Calif.) Jan. 23, 2013 – Altura Credit Union today reported net income of $17.49 million for the year ended Dec. 31, 2012. This is more than double the net income of $8.43 million reported at the end of 2011.

“This is without question the best year in Altura’s history,” said Mark Hawkins, CEO, Altura Credit Union. “Historically, Altura has had many good years, but that was not the case during the ‘Great Recession.’ So, it is very exciting to be able to report such positive results after that period of difficulty,” he added.

“Our 2012 financial results are not only good for Altura, but also good for our Members,” Hawkins continued. “Altura is in outstanding financial condition, particularly in view of the recent recession and the tough times we’ve faced in the Inland Empire. The fact that we have rebounded so well is good news for our Members. After the most difficult economic period in 80 years, we are well prepared to assist Members today with their financial needs.”

Financial Results

For the year ended Dec. 31, 2012, Altura reported net income of $17.49 million on assets of $655.3 million. This is compared to net income of $8.43 million on assets of $642.9 million for the year ended Dec. 31, 2011. Assets increased 1.9% over 2011, and is the first increase in Altura’s asset size since 2007. Hawkins said this is on target with Altura’s 2012 goal of a 2% increase in assets.

Several factors contributed to Altura’s net income gains in 2012. According to Hawkins, these include ongoing expense reduction, reductions in set asides for loan losses and an increase in auto lending activity.

“We implemented a number of steps to reduce our operating expenses over the past five years,” Hawkins said. “In 2012, our expenses were the lowest we have recorded since 2002. This has not been without a price. Some cutbacks impacted our Members, such as closing branch locations. But the end result is that our financial position today is much stronger than it has ever been.”

Altura also reported a Net Worth Ratio of 10.36% at the end of 2012, the highest in the credit union’s history. This is above the 10.22% national average for credit unions of Altura’s size. At the end of 2011, Altura reported Net Worth Ratio of 7.84%.

Although Altura is proud of its 2012 financial results, this news is tempered by an ongoing lack of consumer confidence in general as well as continued slow job growth in the Inland Empire.

“Property values in this area are coming back pretty aggressively right now and that’s good news,” Hawkins said. “But the unemployment rate is still significantly above state and national averages at 11.1%. Consumers continue to be concerned about what is happening in the marketplace. Their focus remains on paying down debt, so our lending growth still has a ways to go. Yet, we clearly see improvement, particularly in auto lending,” Hawkins added.

New Products Address Needs

The strengthening of Altura’s financial position has enabled the credit union to reach out with new products designed to help people rebuild their financial health. “The credit union philosophy encourages creative ways to help people,” Hawkins said. “

A new product, Reliance Checking, was developed to assist individuals who have had financial difficulties like unpaid accounts and negative history reported to ChexSystems®. A negative report usually results in a denial to open a new account at most banks.

Altura’s Reliance Checking Account offers a way up with a regular Visa® Debit Card, online banking, mobile banking and eStatements. After six months of positive account activity, and after having paid off any outstanding checking account-related debits (as reported by ChexSystems), Reliance Checking account holders are eligible to move to the next level in financial recovery – the Renew Checking Account, another new Altura product. Again, after six months of positive Renew account activity, Members become eligible for any of Altura’s checking accounts.

These new products are in addition to all the traditional financial products Altura offers. As a credit union, Altura is a not-for-profit financial institution owned by its Members. Membership is open to anyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in Riverside and San Diego counties and select cities in San Bernardino and Orange counties. For more information, visit Altura’s website, www.alturacu.com.

Altura is very proud of its 56 years of service to Members in the Inland Empire. Today Altura is open to anyone who lives, works, attends school or worships in Riverside and San Diego counties, as well as selected cities in Orange and San Bernardino counties. Altura Credit Union, www.alturacu.com, has been recognized with the California Award for Performance Excellence (CAPE), the state’s equivalent of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. Today, Altura Credit Union serves nearly 94,000 members and has $655.3 million in total assets. For more information on Altura, visit our website, www.alturacu.com, or call 1-888-883-7228.