Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Choices amid the Babble

Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Choices amid the Babble

Article excerpt

With all the palaver and outright rubbish emanating from Washington, the media, and the web about banking these days, there is a crying need, and golden opportunity, to be a voice of reason and honesty in your own sphere. Not voice only, but also a choice of reason and honesty.

Several months ago we said we felt certain there was a large core of people in banking who still believe in the traditional concepts of good judgment and ethics in business. An example of this point we recently found comes from a mid-sized bank in southern Indiana, in the form of an open letter to customers. Written by the bank's CEO, Larry Myers, the letter is a regular feature on the website of First Savings Bank, FSB, Clarksville, Ind. (www.fsbbank.net).

In his March letter, Myers wrote about the stark reality the country faces because of out-of-control government spending. After laying out the numbers and the inevitable comeuppance we all will face, Myers offered this advice:

"If you have debts and can pay them down, do so. Get rid of your credit card balances and consolidate debt where reasonable ... Eventually we will all have to pay more in taxes...." He went on to say, "If you own investments, being conservative is good. Along with taxes going up, so will interest rates.... Finally, live within your means. Borrowing for a home or other major capital expenditure is not bad, but don't borrow to buy a new flat-screen television or the latest fashions. …

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