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SCHOOL OF HARD KNOCKS: "How do you deal with somebody who last week you were good friends with, and this week you're going to have to foreclose on them?" Richard Beard, the CEO of Bank of American Fork in Utah, asked students.
The Conference of State Bank Supervisors recently challenged college students to examine how community banks survived the financial crisis, and the contest highlighted innovative strategies used by Main Street banks such as Bank of American Fork in Utah.

Top Stories

The House Financial Services Committee tackled several key bills including ones targeting Operation Choke Point, executive compensation at Fannie and Freddie, small banks' exam cycle, and changes or delays to several actions by the CFPB.  more »
The auto lender, which has been operating under tight regulatory restrictions since its bailout during the financial crisis, will now be allowed to use its federally insured deposit base to fund more of its loan portfolio.  more »
A new ad from the U.S. unit of Toronto-Dominion Bank that features a same-sex couple is more than a social statement, as it also says a lot about the fragmentation, context and consumer control that are part of modern TV viewing habits, according to the company's top marketing executive.  read more »
FinTech Forward
Fintech Recruitment Lessons ... from 'Star Wars'
Stephen Bohanon of Alkami, a vendor of online and mobile banking software, explains why tech companies serving financial institutions need to hire both industry veterans ("Jedis") and innovative outsiders ("Padawans").  read more »
Some critics see banks' innovation labs as wasteful, unapplied research, but Wells Fargo has embraced the trend by establishing six such labs, a so-called accelerator program and now an innovation group. The bank's Steve Ellis explains its rationale.  read more »
Andrea Smith, Bank of America's head of human resources, will eventually take control of the bank's stress test submissions. That assignment, part of her elevation to chief administrative officer, has sparked concerns about whether a human resources executive can handle a job normally given to a chief risk officer or chief financial officer.  read more »
A Senate bill passed late Thursday provides additional funding but it also requires enhanced reporting on lending and credit quality from SBA. The measure is headed to the House.  read more »
Banks are making meaningful progress with customers in regaining the trust they lost during the financial crisis. For the first time in our annual survey, no bank had a weak reputation and some achieved "excellent" status.  read more »
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