The Week's Best Quotes

American Banker today introduces The Week's Best Quotes. This new regular feature is aimed at highlighting some of the most memorable comments that made their way into print and online stories during the previous seven days. Readers are encouraged to add their own observations in the Comments fields at the bottom of each slide.

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On Citigroup Chief Executive Michael Corbat's all-male executive team: On Citigroup Chief Executive Michael Corbat's all-male executive team: "There are plenty of well-qualified women, but when it comes down to the crunch and things are tough, the men revert to their comfort zone, which is people who look just like them."

- Wendy Watson, former executive vice president of global services for State Street (STT) and a board member at Citizens Financial Group and RBS Citizens.

Related Article: Citigroup Boys' Club Highlights Industry Gender Gap

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On why insurers are selling their banking subsidiaries: On why insurers are selling their banking subsidiaries: "We were a very soundly run, profitable, growing bank that provided great rates and services. The government is putting us out of business."

- Ron Wheeling, chief executive of Shelter Financial Bank.

Related Article: Reg Burden Prompts Another Insurer to Give Up on Banking
On how increased regulation could damage the banking system: On how increased regulation could damage the banking system: "Banks were not responsible for 100% of the problem [financial crisis]. And when we treat them like they were responsible, we get what we have today, which is more regulation, not better regulation."

- William Harrison Jr., former CEO of JPMorgan Chase.

Related Article: Keep the Big Banks, Says JPM Engineer Harrison

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On a deal that provides short-term, accounting-related gains: On a deal that provides short-term, accounting-related gains: "Accounting rules are the tail, and you can't let them wag the dog."

- William Traynham, chief financial officer of American National Bancshares (AMNB) in Danville, Va.

Related Article: Buyers of Bad Banks Run Low on Accounting Gains

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On why banks can no longer boost earnings by selling bad loans and reducing reserves: On why banks can no longer boost earnings by selling bad loans and reducing reserves: "Credit leverage has played out. There are some outliers, but not many earnings levers remain on that front among the banks I cover."

- David Bishop, analyst, Stifel Nicolaus

Related Article: Margin Woes, Lending to Dominate 4Q Conference Calls for Small Banks

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On the difficulties community banks face over the next two years: On the difficulties community banks face over the next two years: "We expect 90% of the banks we cover to exhibit margin compression in 2013 and 2014."

- Chris McGratty, analyst, KBW

Related Article: Margin Woes, Lending to Dominate 4Q Conference Calls for Small Banks

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On a regulatory change that will make it less expensive for small banks to offer Federal Housing Administration loans: On a regulatory change that will make it less expensive for small banks to offer Federal Housing Administration loans: "As a community banker, I like having lots of options, even if some aren't ideal for us. Having more programs that help us take care of customers is good for the community bank model."

- Art Johnson, chairman/CEO, United Bank of Michigan

Related Article: HUD Shift on Audits Could Boost Competition for FHA Loans

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On the outlook for bank M&A in the year ahead: On the outlook for bank M&A in the year ahead: "I'm just hoping for a solid 12-month year. It doesn't need to be roaring, just a solid year."

- Scott Adelson, senior managing director for Houlihan Lokey

Related Article: Houlihan Lokey Acquires Milestone in Pairing of Bank Dealmakers

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On Bell State's purchase of rival Business Bank in Minneapolis: On Bell State's purchase of rival Business Bank in Minneapolis: "These two companies were almost mirror images of each other. We joked that they were twins separated at birth."

- Michael Solberg, president of Bell State Bank & Trust

Related Article: Bell State of Fargo, N.D., to Buy a Minneapolis Bank, Mortgage Lender

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On Bank of Hawaii's plan to close branches in American Samoa: On Bank of Hawaii's plan to close branches in American Samoa: "I can't believe a business would just make up their [sic] mind that they are leaving."

- Afimutasi Gus Hannemann, who is trying to get Hawaiian banks to open branches in American Samoa

Related Article: The Fight to Bring New Banks to American Samoa

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American Banker today introduces The Week's Best Quotes. This new regular feature is aimed at highlighting some of the most memorable comments that made their way into print and online stories during the previous seven days. Readers are encouraged to add their own observations in the Comments fields at the bottom of each slide.

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