Answer: The decreasing number of credit unions in the United States is due to the credit union mergers, which have become fairly common. Mergers allow small credit unions to offer more services to members, compensate when a credit union loses its sponsor group or has an otherwise unstable field of membership, and alleviates supervisory and operation concerns by improving the soundness of a credit union. And, as noted, the number of credit union members continues to grow. Currently, 87 million Americans, including 381,693 Montanans, are credit union members. That’s more than 1 in 3, and as consumers receive the benefits of belonging to a not-for-profit financial cooperative, that number will continue to rise.