Credit union regulator makes clear: no federal savings insurance for crypto, digital assets

There is no federal savings insurance coverage for cryptocurrencies and digital assets at most credit unions according to a new section of frequently asked questions (FAQs) on financial technology in the regulator’s website, the agency said Tuesday.

The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) said it added the section in response to inquiries stakeholders.

“The frequently asked questions make it clear that the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund (NCUSIF), administered by the NCUA, does not insure digital assets or cryptocurrencies,” the agency said in a release. “By federal law, the Share Insurance Fund only insures shares and deposits held in federally insured credit unions.”

Nearly all credit unions have federal share insurance; a small group (around 100) are covered by private savings insurance; all of those credit unions are chartered by states. According to NCUA’s latest quarterly report (for year-end 2023), there were 4,604 federally insured credit unions.

NCUA also said the FAQs clarify that federal credit unions (FCUs) may not serve as a as a custodian for cryptocurrencies and other digital assets. “Whether federally insured, state-chartered credit unions chartered in a particular state have the authority to serve as a custodian for cryptocurrencies and other digital assets depends on state law and regulation,” the agency said.

Frequently Asked Questions About Share Insurance

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