CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.-Research released last week shows credit unions were outpacing banks in deposits long before 2011's Bank Transfer Day drew attention to the issue.

The data, released by SNL, show "aggregate growth of deposits at banks and credit unions from year-end 2006 remained steady until about the beginning of 2009 before diverging. At that point, credit unions opened up a gap in deposit growth compared to banks, based on 2006 levels."

SNL analysis shows the deposit growth at credit unions continued to get boosts from events such as the acquisition of troubled Washington Mutual by JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Wells Fargo's purchase of Wachovia, which led some consumers to seek new providers. Another driver was (and remains) Bank of America's attempt to implement a $5 monthly fee on debit cards.

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