The recent collapse of two banks has put the U.S. financial sector into focus. Customers in Wisconsin and elsewhere are being reminded that there are reliable options. Many consumers and financial advisors believe the “big four” national banks are the safest. Still, others are considering the alternative structures of institutions such as credit unions. Kimberley Jones with Self-Help Federal Credit Union says most credit unions are mission-driven and are involved in the community where they are more likely to look at risk differently.

The March 13th collapse of Silicon Valley Bank is the second-largest bank failure in U.S. history. To get depositors all of their money, the government was forced to step in. Jones says credit unions have spent recent weeks reassuring customers and noting differences in the way they do business.

One of the few similarities between banks and credit unions is that their deposits are both insured. Brady Quirk-Garvan is a financial advisor for Natural Investments who says both institutions’ deposits are covered up to 250 thousand dollars.

“Your money is insured by the government, and that’s true not just at big banks but, importantly, at credit unions and local banks. So that level of insurance is there whether you choose to go with one of the big megabanks or with your local credit union. One of the reasons that I personally have chosen to do my banking with a credit union is because their mission, their end investor, if you will, is their member. What that means is that they’re more likely to take profits from the year and invest it in member services.”

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