Jeff For Banks

Unintended Consequences of Aggressive Regulation

“In case you’re looking for some light reading this weekend, FRB-Philadelphia working paper 21-08, Does CFPB Oversight Crimp Credit?” ~ Robert Morro (@bmorro44)   So went a tweet from one of my Twitter connections. So I listened to him, and dialed up the FRB-Philadelphia WP 21-08. Forty three pages later, with formulas like:   CFPBLoanSharelt = […]


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 […]


How Can Community Financial Institutions Improve? Project Management

In this video blog, I discuss my thoughts on community financial institutions upping their project management game. In summary: There are two types of projects: support function projects where you try to improve the gears within the bank, and customer experience projects (CX) where you meet the demands or emerging demands of your most valuable […]


The Death of The Community Bank

In June of 2008 I gave a speech titled “The Death of the Community Bank” and in that speech I made predictions. Recently I was cleaning out my files and I ran into the hard copy slide deck that accompanied the speech. If I ignore where I was wrong then I am as guilty of […]


Banking’s Top 5 Total Return to Shareholders: 2020 Edition

For the past nine years I searched for the Top 5 financial institutions in five-year total return to shareholders because I support long-term strategic decision making that may not benefit next quarter’s or even next year’s earnings. And I am weary of the persistent “get big or get out” mentality of many industry pundits. If […]


The Bank Branch Manager’s Wish List

Now is the time for wishes. And if I were a branch manager, given all of the demands on me, here is what I would wish for: 1. Clarity of Expectations. Do you want me, your branch manager, to grow small business customers by being a trusted advisor to small business owners within a five mile […]


The Slippery Slope of Using Banks to Advance a Political Agenda

On October 29, 2020, the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) issued a letter to all depositories and non-depositories regulated by them regarding climate change and financial risks. This post is not about climate change. It is about how an unchecked bureaucracy can implement an agenda it cannot get through duly elected legislative […]