How Bankers Evaluate Target Interstate Markets and Institutions Across State Lines
What factors do bankers weigh when they decide to cross state lines and make an acquisition? What features of a state or local area seem to draw the most attention from interstate acquirers? What makes an individual bank attractive as an interstate acquisition target?
Evidence on the factors bankers actually consider in entering new markets and in choosing a particular bank to acquire is sparse indeed. Bankers usually don't like to publish with any specificity the features of a target market or a target banking firm they value most highly for fear of giving away their company's strategic plan to competitors. If a particular formula for identifying and making acquisitions is working well, successful bankers obviously would prefer to keep that formula to themselves.
Moreover, as Edward W. Kelley Jr. ( 1995), member of the Federal Reserve Board, noted recently in a speech to the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, several different interstate expansion strategies have been followed by leading American banks, and many of these different, often conflicting strategies have been quite successful. For example, Chase Manhattan and Chemical Bank of New York have pursued consolidation largely within their existing market areas; First Union, First Fidelity, NBD Bancorp, and First Chicago Corporation have tried to link adjoining markets together; while NationsBank and Bank of America have ventured far afield in the Southwest, Southeast, Midwest, and the Middle Atlantic regions. Therefore,