Cece Stewart
"It was a very, very difficult choice" to retire from Citigroup, said Cece Stewart, the company's former U.S. head of consumer and commercial banking. "I've done this for 35 years, and I have had an amazing career."
Deals and departures were common trends among bankers we highlighted as worth watching in 2014. In fact, only a few bankers managed to avoid major headlines in the past year.

Top Stories

Investor confidence in Ocwen Financial was clearly shaken Monday after New York state regulators forced the firm's founder out as part of a $150 million settlement.  more »
First Guaranty Bancshares had hoped to raise more than $60 million but a dip in oil prices spooked potential investors even though just 3% of the bank's loans involve energy companies.  more »
James Herbert's bank is thriving by delivering top-notch service and maintaining strict underwriting standards at a time when many banks are struggling to increase revenues and undercutting each other to win loan business.  read more »
Oil at $50 per barrel will almost definitely create problems for banks in oil-producing regions as well as Wall Street financial institutions that finance the sector. Analysts already forecast the price of crude will fall that low — the only other question is how long it might last.  read more »
FinTech Forward
A Neobank that Aims to Protect Millennials from Themselves
A Canadian startup, Koho, is poised to begin testing a mobile financial product that helps customers manage spending — think card controls that prevent late-night withdrawals to fund one round of tequila too many.  read more »
The Federal Housing Administration is facing severe challenges next year as some pressure it to lower premiums to deal with new competition from the government-sponsored enterprises, even while its insurance fund remains weak and it faces added scrutiny from GOP lawmakers.  read more »
Disciplined pursuit of acquisitions and efficient management of a complex business model have earned Mick Blodnick, the retiring CEO of Montana's largest bank, a spot as one of American Banker's three community bankers of the year.  read more »
The Mississippi company is hopeful examiners will recognize progress made on Bank Secrecy Act compliance, including a much bigger staff and enhanced systems. If all goes well, BancorpSouth could have a consent order lifted, paving the way for it to refile applications for two acquisitions it hopes to complete next year.  read more »
Our second annual ranking of the banks that win high marks from employees for providing a positive work environment, top-notch benefits and ample career-advancement opportunities. (The perks – like free lattes and subsidized gym memberships – are nice, too.)  read more »
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