More community banks are offering Small Business Administration loans far beyond their local markets, hoping that the income boost outweighs the long-term risk of lending in unfamiliar regions.

Robust demand for SBA loans and a strong secondary loan market have encouraged more banks to expand their SBA operations into far-flung territories. Among the banks that have announced national SBA programs in the last month are United Community Banks (UCBI) in Blairsville, Ga., Hanmi Financial (HAFC) in Los Angeles and Crestmark Bank in Troy, Mich.

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