Hey buddy, who are you calling fungible?

Join me now for another trip into the beyond, to the world of international mystery, art, crime, computers and (probably) robots. Did I mention crime? The latest head scratcher has come in the form of Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs). Out of nowhere come reports of individuals (Elon Musk’s girlfriend Grimes for instance), who are using NFTs to sell digital art. Though new, the value of these “tokens” is jaw-dropping. [Continue]

Don’t let perfection be a roadblock to progress

A fourth-generation community banker recently shared a piece of advice she got from her father. There are times and situations, he told her, when giving 80 percent is good enough. In our cover story this month, which bestows our first ever “Spirit of Community Banking” award on the second- and third-generation leadership team at Ohnward Bancshares, you’ll find an example of how a less than 100 percent effort was the ticket to success. [Continue]

Expected tax law changes will impact banks

Banks may get pulled into an effort to collect more of the taxes the federal government says it is owed. Mel Schwarz, director of legislative affairs for Eide Bailly, told bankers that Form 1099 reporting may be expanded so that banks have to report deposits and withdrawals of wealthy customers. This would include individual taxpayers and pass-through business entities. [Continue]

Rocky start needn’t be the final say

If you are my age and cut your grass as a child with a power lawn mower, it likely had a Clinton engine, manufactured in eastern Iowa. In the middle 1960s, Clinton Engines dominated the small engines market, producing tens of thousands of motors sold throughout the United States and exported to 90 countries. The company employed more than 5,000 people, many of whom worked in Maquoketa. One would think it would be a great place to open a bank.  [Continue]

Strong digital strategy requires a human element

Now as we step fully into an age of remote work, digital transformation within the industry has accelerated and customers’ demands and expectations for digital banking services have increased. While implementing digitalization through internal technology sounds straightforward enough, bringing it to the consumer-facing level involves more of a balancing act.  [Continue]

Lessons in the value of community banking

I’ve spent the last four months as an editorial intern with NFR Communications researching and reporting on the community banking industry. I’m a senior Political Science major at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minn., pursuing journalism as a career. I’ve worked on my school newspaper, the Mac Weekly, since my freshman year, and interned at a regional magazine, a metro daily newspaper and a student journalism start-up. But I have never dove into a niche the way I have at BankBeat, immersing myself in all things community banking and learning how to write for an audience of community bankers. [Continue]

How to field a marketing team in 2021 and beyond

Your customers are comparing your mobile banking app experience to shopping on Amazon. Your CEO wants a digital transformation plan up and rolling. Now. And your lenders want Wave 3 PPP communication support, a spring mortgage campaign, and a treasury management video by noon tomorrow. While just about every facet of banking has been disrupted in the last five years, the resources needed to support these changes are in serious need of inspection. [Continue]

#QuickTakes Cheryl Lawson

Cheryl Lawson, executive vice president of compliance review with JMFA, joins BankBeat publisher Tom Bengtson to discuss the importance of robust overdraft solutions management. With how complex compliance has gotten, it’s important to seek out knowledgeable industry partners who can guide your bank through the minutiae of overdraft services. [Continue]

Bringing true AI to AML

Criminals have become increasingly sophisticated at money laundering, creating a flourishing industry that costs banks around the world a great deal of money in fines each year. Illegal funds flow in ever-greater volumes through the global financial system; fraud is the most common crime in the digital world, and criminal capabilities outpace the industry’s ability to respond.  [Continue]

Not quite a fare-thee-well for bricks and mortar

There’s no question the pandemic has changed how people interact with their bank. Consider the insights from a study conducted last summer by Texas-based fintech Self Financial, which found a third of respondents opened an online-only bank account in the past 12 months. More than half believe online banks will eventually outnumber traditional banks, and 46 percent believe the way people currently bank needs to change. [Continue]