Financial Advisory

Fintech Buys Bank. Keeps Stratospheric Valuation.

Imagine a fintech, with off-the-chart valuations such as 2.6x book value and 51x EBITDA, buying a bank. For 1.85x book. In today’s M&A valuations, 1.85x is pretty lofty. Especially for a community bank. But you don’t have to imagine it. Because that was what LendingClub paid for Radius Bank. Since the deal closed, LendingClub has […]


CFPB: Are They Coming to Get You?

A bank trade association CEO asked me a couple of questions while he was researching an op-ed piece. The edited Q&A is below. Q. Shouldn’t the CFPB work to address the impediments to starting a bank in LMI markets rather than punish community banks who scrambled to serve their customers when the economy shut down? […]


Twitter Reacts to M&T / Peoples United Bank Deal

The headlines for subject deal, which dealmakers hope beyond all hope starts a robust bank M&A frenzy, were like the following: (you can click on articles and tweets to enlarge)     Conversely, here are what some Twitter users thought of the deal, which starts with a factual tweet from yours truly. Keep in mind […]


Is Your Contemplated Bank Merger Anti-Competitive

Yesterday at the ABA’s virtual Conference for Community Bankers (CCB), Federal Reserve Governor Michelle Bowman gave a speech, My Perspective on Bank Regulation and Supervision. In that speech, she briefly commented on the FRB’s review of merger applications from an anti-trust standpoint. She said: “Technological developments and financial market evolution are quickly escalating competition in the […]


Bank M&A – Show Me the Money

Deep down I’m a bit of a softie. And nostalgic. So, if my wife and I are watching TV on a Saturday night and I happen to come across “Jerry Maguire,” I tend to stop and watch awhile. Then she says, “not this movie again” and I move on. Not that Jerry Maguire is my […]


Banks On Sale

My bank stock portfolio was comfortably in the black, with a solid 2.5% dividend yield at year-end. My have times changed. Before I begin, I feel compelled to disclose that I am not a registered broker or financial advisor. I am not giving you investment advice. At December 31, 2019, the SNL Bank & Thrift […]


Private Equity Investing in Banking

Podcast Show Notes: Our This Month In Banking (TMIB) podcast features discussion with colleagues and other industry thought leaders on interesting banking news that happened this month. TMIB will be available on the last Wednesday of every month here, and on Apple and Droid podcast apps for your listening enjoyment. Join us on your commute, […]


Bank Director’s Acquire or Be Acquired Conference: Top Tweets

I attended my first Acquire or Be Acquired conference in the Arizona desert. Bank Director does a great job on organization, content, and promotion. They established the #aoba20 hashtag that had plenty of activity on Twitter and LinkedIn. Below are the top tweets, as judged by me. Because it’s my blog. 🙂  Also, putting myself […]


Banking New Year’s Resolutions – We Have Opinions / Negotiating Merger Transactions

 Podcast Show Notes: Our This Month In Banking (TMIB) podcast features discussion with colleagues and other industry thought leaders on interesting banking news that happened this month. TMIB will be available on the last Wednesday of every month here, and on Apple and Droid podcast apps for your listening enjoyment. Join us on your […]


Why Did Oritani Sell for No Premium?

On June 25th, Oritani Financial Corp (ORIT) common stock closed at $16.21 per share. The next day they announced they were selling to Valley National Corp. for $16.29 per share. Virtually no premium. And less than ORIT traded one year ago. Why? I was not part of the discussions regarding the transaction, and am not […]