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Virtual Encounter: Liquidity Management Solutions for Latin American Credit Unions

Executives from more than a dozen World Council member organizations in Spanish-speaking Latin America explored strategies to help credit unions manage COVID-19 related liquidity concerns during a May 5 virtual encounter.

Due to an increase in cash withdrawals and a reduction in loan repayments by members, small- to medium sized credit unions across the region are specifically at risk when it comes to maintaining enough liquidity to remain solvent.

Sally Sanchez, senior financial analyst for Dallas-based investment advisory firm ALM First, gave a presentation to the executives on why it is important credit unions monitor their liquidity on a daily basis during this crisis, so they can implement stress tests to determine their viability going forward.

Rony Mota, coordinator of financial intelligence at FENACOAC—World Council’s direct member credit union association in Guatemala—then walked attendees through the liquidity management tool they use to evaluate their member credit unions. That includes an analysis of several variables that impact liquidity, including the behavior of deposits and loans.

Finally, Socorro Neira, an executive at Financiera Comultrasan—one of the largest credit unions in Colombia—gave an overview of what they have seen so far when it comes to member behavior during the pandemic, how it has impacted liquidity and what the implications have been internally. Strategic actions the credit union has taken include:

  • Prioritizing liquidity and cash flow monitoring.
  • Ensuring the wellbeing and efficiency of staff.
  • Ongoing contact with members and strengthening of communications channels.
  • Reviewing critical processes.
  • Prioritization of digital channels.
  • Reinforcing cybersecurity efforts.

You can view the entire webinar on World Council’s YouTube Channel.

This was the third in a series of biweekly virtual meetings in which Latin American credit union association executives discussed the effects of COVID-19 on financial cooperatives in the region. During the second virtual meeting, leaders received an update on World Council's regulatory advocacy efforts and explored strategies to support the digital transformation of financial services.

Jaime Chavez, corporate president (CEO) of Financiera Comultrasan and a World Council Board director, believes the collaboration made possible by these virtual meetings is extremely valuable.

“In times of crisis, the strength of the financial cooperative movement is demonstrated in our willingness to come together, share our experience and support one another,” said Chavez.