BIRMINGHAM, Ala.-While there may be good news on the economy in 2013, the same can't be said of regulation, according to Dennis Dollar.

Dollar, the former credit union CEO and NCUA Chairman who now heads up the consultancy Dollar and Associates, told Credit Union Journal he foresees 2013 as "another year of increased regulatory burden," especially with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau getting into full operation.

"How dramatic of an impact the increase in regulations will mean to credit union income remains to be seen," he said. "If the CFPB goes to a very draconian look at overdrafts, that could have a large impact."

Dollar also warned CUs their fee income might be threatened by the CFPB, including regulations on credit card fees and mortgage refinance fees.

"Overdrafts, credit cards and mortgage refinancing, all of these are important sources of income for credit unions," he said. "I am hopeful that it will not be terribly disruptive to the income stream for credit unions, but the management of all this new compliance will result in increased costs."

Other areas of focus Dollar sees as important for CUs in the year ahead: improving checking account penetration and debit card usage, and improving efficiency ratios.

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