The battle for deposits has become increasingly competitive for community financial institutions. Major retailers and tech companies such Apple, T-Mobile and Google are attempting to enter the financial services landscape, posing new threats to existing players. As a result, money that used to be stored in traditional bank accounts is now scattered across various channels that are typically not secured by the FDIC, such as the Starbucks app. And, large national banks still persist as significant competition. With their expansive budgets and vast resources, national banks have more freedom than their community bank counterparts to leverage technology and hire staff in their efforts to gather deposits and scale.
The Census Bureau collects household information in order to understand the nation’s people and economy. The data describes where people live, their living arrangements, ages, income, education level, commuting patterns, and occupations.1 This information helps all members of the community in different ways. Following the constitutional mandate of equal population representation, the data is used to apportion seats in the House of Representatives and draw district boundaries. Conducting a census every ten years is required by the U.S Constitution.
Looking at the success of others, we can see what consumers want. Something Apple, Google, and Amazon all have in common is that they thrive with simplicity. Consumers love the sleek, uniform, and easy-to-use features of Apple products. People love how easy it is to find information with a quick Google search. People love finding what they need, buying it with the touch of a button, and having it on their doorstep within a day or two. It’s the ease, the simplicity.
The FDIC recently released its latest Quarterly Banking Profile for Q3 with positive results. The results include all FDIC-insured institutions. The profile is described by the FDIC as a “report card on industry status and performance.” The report looks at balance, loan performance, quarterly income, annual income, ratios by asset size, loans to small businesses and small farms, and ratios for community and non-community banks.
Fraud is not something new to us. The growth of technology has caused an influx of varying scams. Most people are aware of identity theft and the precautions to take. First-party fraud is also on the rise, with people intentionally fabricating all or part of their identity to avoid paying for products or services or to receive reduced rates.1 With online shopping at large and the holiday season upon us, we want to talk about online shopping scams we’ve been seeing lately that we might be more likely to fall for.
Consumer sentiment is the measure of how optimistic consumers feel about their finances and the state of the economy. There are two major reporters of consumer sentiment: The Consumer Confidence Index by the Conference Board and the Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index by the University of Michigan. These are both conducted by household survey and report monthly.
Teslar is excited to announce that we are one of the four companies that has received a grant from Association for Financial Technology (AFT)’s Fintech Grant Program. AFT is a networking and professional development resource for the financial services industry. The organization is dedicated to the advancement of fintech companies and the U.S. financial industry through technology. By receiving this grant and participating in AFT, Teslar will be able to learn from and collaborate with leading financial technology providers.
Everyone’s financial situation is unique. We typically think of finances as credit scores, income, and net worth. However, analyzing financial well-being looks deeper by examining our relationship with money. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) defines financial well-being as “the state wherein an individual has a sense of control over day-to-day and month-to-month finances, capacity to absorb financial shock, being on track to meet financial goals, and the ability to make financial choices to enjoy life.”1
Springdale, Arkansas (home to Teslar’s headquarters) has received an exciting new, albeit temporary, addition to the community—an Innovation Hub. The hub is a pop-up makerspace that offers opportunities for adults and children of the community to attend free classes and workshops that offer tools and training to spark innovation and creativity and improve future careers.
One of the most recent developments to come out of the banking industry were the recent layoffs conducted by Wells Fargo, the fourth largest lender in the United States. Announced last month, Wells Fargo laid off more than 200 employees mostly focused within their agriculture loan divisions in states such as North and South Dakota. According to people with direct knowledge on the matter, Wells Fargo has cut the commercial loan division of their lending portfolio by 25%. This comes as a blow to the farmers in North and South Dakota who were relying on Wells Fargo to meet their lending needs.