Strategic Management

Build or Buy: Develop Staff or Buy Off of the Street?

News Flash: There are fewer community banks, and those that remain keep getting bigger. During the past 10 years, the number of U. S. banks has dropped by a third and the average asset size has more than doubled. As with consolidation in so many other industries, community bankers must be prepared to meet the […]


Three Gifts for Bankers

The magi, thought to be named Gaspar, Balthasar, and Melchior, followed a bright star to find the Messiah. According to the Gospel of Matthew, they brought him three gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh. The journey wasn’t easy for the magi. At first, they did not know where they were going. And when they arrived in […]


Banking’s Top 5 in Total Return to Shareholders: 2018 Edition

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


Ten Things Community Bankers Should Be Thankful For During This Holiday Season

Host: Sharon Lorman, Vice President Cohost: Bob Kafafian, President and CEO 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 […]


Community Banks Serving Small Business Customers in the Credit Card Space – How ICBA Bancard and TCM Bank Are Here to Help

Host: Sharon Lorman, Vice President Cohosts: Jeff Marsico, Executive Vice President and Rich Trauger, Managing Director Guests: Tina Giorgio, President and CEO, ICBA Bancard and Damon Moorer, President and CEO, TCM Bank N.A. Podcast Show Notes: Our This Month In Banking (TMIB) podcast features discussion with colleagues and other industry thought leaders on interesting banking […]


Teflon Tim: You Can’t Mess With Wells Fargo

Could the past two years have been worse for Wells Fargo (WF)? According to an appropriately snarky Gonzo Banker post by Scott Hodgins, Wells’ blunders are epic: September 2016 – Disclosed that they created two million bogus accounts without customer consent to hit the bank’s “eight is great” cross-sell targets. That fiasco cost them over […]


Is It Time to Start a New Bank? De Novo Applications Are Up!

Host: Sharon Lorman, Vice President Cohosts: Jeff Marsico, Executive Vice President and Rich Trauger, Managing Director Guest: Joseph W. Major, Chairman of the Board and CEO, The Victory Bank 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 […]


FDIC to Revisit Brokered Deposit Rules

Host: Sharon Lorman, Vice President Cohosts: Jeff Marsico, Executive Vice President and Rich Trauger, Managing Director 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, […]


Agencies Propose New Leverage Ratio for Community Banks

Host: Sharon Lorman, Vice President Cohosts: Jeff Marsico, Executive Vice President, Rich Trauger, Managing Director and Kyle Kuster, Senior Consultant 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 […]


Bankers: Don’t Buy the Hype. Let Fintech Equity Investors Bear the Cost of Experimentation.

When JPMorgan Chase released its 2016 annual report, in which the celluloid CEO Jamie Dimon proudly acknowledged spending nearly $10 billion on technology, the talking heads erupted. Ten billion! Must be good. Jamie does it. And from that moment the conventional wisdom was and is: community banks can’t compete. I just heard it on Friday. […]