By Paul Schmitt
With continued mergers and consolidations of banks in the past decade, independent banks are looking to their strengths to stay relevant. Customers of community banks may not find their bank any more convenient than larger national banks, but many say the advantages of more favorable fee structures like less checking account fees and lower overdraft fees make community banks more attractive, according to a survey by Pew Charitable Trusts. Bank of Luxemburg CEO and President Tim Treml says impacting the local economy is another key to independent banking.
Treml says the revitalization loan program is an offshoot of what the village of Luxemburg did in 2016 to give small businesses low-interest loans for capital improvements. According to researchers at the Harvard Kennedy in 2015, over half of all small business loans come from community banks.