Comments on: Banking: Why geography matters A slice of lime in the soda Sun, 26 Oct 2014 19:05:02 +0000 hourly 1 By: VeronikaS Mon, 07 Nov 2011 11:23:52 +0000 I heard on the radio somebody from a credit union marketing group, who tracks numbers nationwide, say that about 650,000 new accounts had come to the national credit unions in a week. That was more than the average 600,000 new accounts per year that are reported. And that is just credit unions. The same interview quoted somebody from the community banks group who said the small community banks had also seen an uptick in new accounts. And that was before Saturday, so who knows how many people will finally ‘get it’ and switch their money to a local bank or credit union. Maybe 1 million accounts? That may not be much against 30 million, but it is enough to make a point to the big boys. It is way past time for all those “Mr. Potter” types at the big banks to get their comeuppance.
Veronika from

By: ARJTurgot2 Tue, 04 Jan 2011 20:28:54 +0000 On my local front, I bank at a local credit union office that has all the options I need, cheaper than any local bank, and Yvonne and Tatiania, who have been there forever, know my dog well enough I can send him in with an envelope and have the transaction done thru him. He can be bribed, they can’t. (

My mutual insurance company ( sends me a rebate check every year for all the claims I didn’t file, consistently ranks 1st or 2nd in customer service, and the local office answers the phone, live. At least nominally owned by me.

My mutual funds/stocks are at Vanguard, ( organized since inception to plow its profits back into reducing costs, also nominally owned by me.

My skis come from my climbing co-op (, which also sends me a rebate check every year for all the rec stuff I buy. Never been less than 10%.

Health insurance – Kaiser Perm. HMOs work if you give them a chance.

Wood working hobby – Community woodworking co-op (

Green house/gardening stuff – Seed Saver’s exchange (

If you seek, you will find an enormous number of co-op type institutions that can meet at least some of your needs. If you join them you help break the corporate cartels.

And I am very much a running dog capitalist. I’m just a tight-fisted one.

By: LadyGodiva Tue, 04 Jan 2011 14:46:51 +0000 TFF,
Wealth is certainly more easily redistributed from afar. Excuse the metaphor, but I have “It’s a Wonderful Life” on the brain still. Y’see, Mr. Potter no longer wants to live in a town named after him, surrounded by beaten down serfs. He long ago took his money to NY, started a hedge fund, and spends all his time trying to impress hot chicks made briefly famous by a week on a reality tv show. He doesn’t have to steal Uncle Billy’s deposit in person, because Uncle Billy’s pension fund (the S and L died 20 years ago) can be scammed in the derivatives market, along with all the other nameless sheep.

And we who have moved to the big city to advance our careers, and who opted to deal mostly with TBTF institutions because they were fully modern (like us), and who hardly ever go INTO the bank because we can do it all online or at the ATM–we have to take our share of the blame too, don’t we? We helped create these monsters. Now they are killing us all. Talk about blowback.

By: TFF Tue, 04 Jan 2011 02:43:14 +0000 LadyGodiva, I wonder how much of this stems from the redistribution of wealth in society? As our national capital is increasingly concentrated in the hands of institutional investors and a few ultra-wealthy individuals, it becomes necessary to create conduits for that capital to flow back into our towns again. Perhaps this is the fundamental raison d’etre for loan securitization?

By: FifthDecade Tue, 04 Jan 2011 02:17:43 +0000 It could also be due to overzealous sales tactics employed by big mortgage brokers to get people on their books no matter the risk since they have next to no risk themselves. Conversely, local banks do not treat customers as ‘marks’ but value a long term and growing relationship.

It’s the classic hunter v farmer argument. Hunting might be more fun, and lead to massive short term gains, but there are always more farmers in the world as they are arguably more successful in the long run.

By: LadyGodiva Tue, 04 Jan 2011 01:39:35 +0000 Is it geography or is it personal relationships? We have stripped away the latter and commoditized, and depersonalized everything in America, and for what? It is very easy to hate and resent a company with whom I interact ONLY electronically and whose executives I read about as greedy grasping goons. They seem to see me only as a number, and I reciprocate. Banks have passed beyond the pale, while all other companies are looking to build good will, warm fuzzies. It will not end well.