Missouri is the best state for banking conditions and Nevada is the worst, according to a new survey.
The 2014 MoneyRates.com Best and Worst States for Banking survey found that Missouri is the best state for consumers based on breadth of choice there are more than 350 banks operating in Missouri quality of service and competitive rates. Missouri had above-average scores in all the key categories, MoneyRates.com, said in a news release Monday. Rounding out the top five were Kansas, Nebraska, Massachusetts and California.
On the opposite end of the spectrum was Nevada, which is still feeling the lingering effects of the real estate bust. Only 46 banks had operations in the state as of June 2013, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., and that relative lack of competition appears to have affected service. According to MoneyRates.com's analysis of J.D. Power data, Nevada has the fifth-worst customer service ratings in the country.
Richard Barrington, a senior financial analyst for MoneyRates.com, suggested that the high rate of bank failures in Nevada contributed to the poor ranking.
"Given how much the banking industry depends on the real estate market, it is not surprising to see banking suffering in a state like Nevada, which has had brutal real estate conditions since the housing bubble burst," he said in a news release.
Arizona, also hit hard by failures, was the second-worst rated state for banking conditions. Rounding out the bottom five were Connecticut, Washington and Alaska.
Findings were based on the number of active banking institutions based in each state according to FDIC statistics; stability, as determined by the percentage of state banks that failed during 2013; quality of service according to the 2014 J.D. Power U.S. Retail Banking Satisfaction Study; and MoneyRates.com's quarterly surveys of best savings account rates and money market rates in the country.
Still, MoneyRates.com said that living in a low-rated state "doesn't doom consumers to a life of unhappy banking."
"Always remember that banking is a very fragmented industry, which means that there are lots of choices," Barrington said. "Nowadays, online banking is making choice even more widely available. So, if there is anything you don't like about your bank, shop around. There are always others out there."