Opinion

When ‘Big Data’ becomes actionable data

“Big Data” is more than just the trend du jour. Banks that are leveraging the power of big data (data analytics) are gaining valuable insights on their customers and are making more informed business decisions. But, as I attend industry conferences and speak with bank executives, the million dollar question I hear is: How can a bank make data analytics produce results? [Continue]

Beware the dreaded ‘deconversion fee’

Making sure you have the best technology solutions in place for your community bank is tough enough.  Making a change in order to save your bank money or to obtain better service should be an option open to every bank. For this reason, you want to make sure you never accept a vendor contract which imposes a large “deconversion fee” on your bank.  [Continue]

Tech to assist in managing new accounting standards

The Financial Accounting Standards Board is replacing the current “incurred loss” accounting model with a “current expected credit loss” model, or CECL. The new and more complex model, slated for implementation beginning in 2020, will likely present a technological challenge for many banks. According to the American Bankers Association’s overview on the subject, this standard is “expected to have a huge impact on the costs to prepare and audit the allowance for loan and lease losses.” This standard is also expected to add expense to how investors analyze the ALLL and how banks manage their capital. [Continue]

Incentives to renovate buildings disappear with tax reform

With more than 30 years of consistent tax legislation, the federal historic tax credit program seemed to be as steadfast as the heavy timber and masonry buildings that it helps to preserve. Then, in the uncertainty of the 2017 tax reform — the House proposed eliminating historic tax credits entirely while the Senate proposed retaining partial credits — the existence of this powerful program was questioned and threatened, creating confusion and panic throughout the building reuse industry. [Continue]

Three things bankers can learn from Facebook

Facebook is a company that provides a personal experience through technology; that makes it a good company for community banks to study. Consider the Jan. 11 announcement by Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chairman and CEO, that the company is changing its newsfeed algorithm to prioritize posts from friends and family. Public content – posts from businesses, brands and media – will appear much less frequently on the social network. Zuckerberg expressed concern those posts diminish the quality of the Facebook user experience. He actually said he expects this change to result in the amount of time people spend on Facebook to decrease, yet he expects users to get a better experience. [Continue]