Monday, December 22, 2008

Customers flock to small banks

At least, they feel they can trust them!

But as the top tier of the financial services industry faltered, small and regional banks, as well as credit unions, started seeing their cash deposits rise dramatically as nervous Americans shied away from big banks. Some of these smaller financial firms saw an increase in small businesses knocking on their doors. And despite rampant headlines about a credit freeze and plunging housing market, they have even been writing more home loans this year than last year.

In her 18 years as a banker, Sebrina Verburgt hasn't seen anything like this: new customers with cash in hand, streaming in through the doors of the 11 branches of the United Heritage Credit Union, where Verburgt is senior vice president of operations. Many of them had the same story to tell: They were moving cash from larger banks, afraid that they would fail.

No comments: