Credit unions and banks across the country are seeing an uptick in cash withdrawals as consumers feel uncertain about the current state of the economy and flock to their local branches and ATMs.
It is understandable that Washingtonians want a little extra cash on hand during the Stay Home, Stay Healthy order in Washington State. At Sound Credit Union (Sound), we want to help our members make informed decisions about their money and do what we can to help them protect it.
I do not recommend anyone walk around with a large amount of cash on their person. While we recognize that “a large amount” is different for each person and their individual situation, a misplaced wallet or snatched purse could be devastating if full of cash.
Cards (debit and credit) are always a safer payment alternative. You don’t need to have extra cash on hand, and Visa’s Zero Liability Guarantee protects members from unauthorized charges made with their account or account information. Plus, during this time of social distancing, cards often limit contact between people.
It is worth noting that, as commerce in the state is changing, we have seen some retailers move to a card-only business model. Some cite concerns about the cleanliness of cash, while others want to eliminate the costly storage, security, and transportation of monetary instruments.
Your money is safer at Sound than in your pocket or tucked under your mattress. As a federally insured credit union, Sound is regulated by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) and the Washington State Department of Financial Institutions. Member deposits are insured by the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund (NCUSIF) up to at least $250,000 per individual depositor.
Credit unions, banks, and other financial institutions have been deemed “essential businesses” by Governor Inslee. We will continue to ensure that our members have access to their funds either directly or electronically. Between our 28 branches, Sound branded ATMs, CO-OP shared branching, more than 30,000 CO-OP ATMs, and our variety of digital banking options, members are able to access their money when they need it.
Sound is celebrating our 80th anniversary this year. As a community partner since 1940, we’ve lived through a number of financial downturns. Through them all, we’ve remained a trusted partner for our members and the communities we serve. These are difficult times we are facing. Sound will continue to stand with our members, employees and community as we weather this wave of life together.