April is official Financial Literacy Month in the United States. In observance, we want to encourage everybody to take control of their finances by opening an account at a local community bank or credit union. Not only will you be treated like an actual human being instead of a number, but you will probably pay fewer fees and have the knowledge that your money is staying in you own community instead of going to fund Wall Street bonuses.

Fred R. Becker Jr., President of the National Association of Federal Credit Unions, agrees that moving your money is a great way to be proactive about your finances. He especially encourages people to look into moving their money to a credit union.

Today is both the beginning of Financial Literacy Month and April Fool’s Day. Coincidentally, I thought it was the perfect time to help folks get smart about their financial choices and revisit the Move Your Money campaign. When it was launched, it ignited a firestorm among many who sought better service, products and rates from local financial institutions like credit unions.

It is with good reason that credit unions remain an oasis for many in our challenging economic times. Earlier this year, Forrester Research released the findings of its seventh annual customer advocacy rankings, which placed credit unions at the top tier of rated firms. Forrester’s yardstick for customer advocacy – the perception by customers that a firm does what’s best for them, not just what’s best for its own bottom line – mirrors the core principles of credit unions, which are member-owned, not-for-profit financial institutions. The survey also found that the largest U.S. banks dominate the bottom of the rankings.

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