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Preserving a Distinctive Tradition
Wednesday, August 31, 2016 (542 reads)


Community banking is a uniquely American system. While many other advanced nations have long operated highly centralized banking systems – some for centuries – in the United States, ours was founded on decentralization and localization. Appropriately, this distinctive U.S. tradition is carried on by institutions that are themselves exceptional. I refer to community banks.



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The 2016 State Legislative Session Is Over
Wednesday, August 31, 2016 (867 reads)


The 2016 New York State legislative session concluded in the early hours of Saturday morning, June 18, with IBANYS on hand to the end.



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Affirmative Action Compliance Doesn’t Have to Be Difficult
Wednesday, August 31, 2016 (791 reads)


Few industries are subject to more regulatory oversight than financial services. And there is very little difference between large, global, commercial financial institutions and small, community-oriented banks with small HR departments, limited resources and budgets – at least in terms of affirmative action compliance. But small community banks need not use expensive applicant tracking or human resource management software to ensure compliance. Often, the same levels of data collection and reporting can be achieved using your payroll system and a combination of Excel spreadsheets or Access databases.
Here are three things to look out for:



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The BOLI Boon for Community Banks
Wednesday, August 31, 2016 (662 reads)


Bank-owned life insurance (BOLI) can be a valuable asset for banks of all sizes, including community banks. Offered by most of the highly rated insurance carriers, BOLI is a single premium insurance policy in which the bank is the beneficiary and owner. While banks often utilize BOLI as a tax shelter, given BOLI’s status by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) as a tax-free asset, it is also utilized to help offset the ever-increasing costs of employee benefit programs.



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Kinderhook Bank Achieves Record Growth in Capital Region
Wednesday, August 31, 2016 (612 reads)


Nationally, small business lending is down almost 25 percent since the Great Recession, but don’t tell Kinderhook Bank that.
The small upstate New York bank has been growing its commercial loan portfolio at a double-digit annual clip for the last several years, including during the Great Recession.
“The great thing about the Capital Region is that the economy hasn’t seen big ebbs and flows like a lot of the national economy. It’s a stable economy,” said Lee R. Carman, senior vice president of commercial lending.



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M&As Allow Opportunity to Create Strong Team Unity
Wednesday, August 31, 2016 (801 reads)


Coming off a record year for mergers and acquisitions, an overwhelming majority of executives at U.S. corporations and private equity firms forecast that deal activity will stay strong or even ramp up this year.
And this is certainly true with banks of all sizes, as well as other financial institutions.



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Dealing With Harassment in the Workplace
Wednesday, August 31, 2016 (693 reads)


Workplace harassment is unfortunately a prevalent problem, and the financial industry is no exception. Statistics from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (2015) show workplace harassment is alleged in approximately 30 percent of all charges filed with the agency.



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The Glass is Half Empty
Wednesday, August 31, 2016 (1201 reads)


As the race for the presidency rages on, much has been said about the Dodd-Frank Act and its predecessors, particularly the Glass-Steagall Act. But as is often the case in American politics, no consensus has been reached, and there are strong feelings on all sides of the issue.
“Glass-Steagall is dumb politics and dumb economics … returning to Glass-Steagall would be destructive and unworkable,” said Tony Fratto, managing partner in Washington at Hamilton Place Strategies, a lobbying firm that represents large banks.



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