Most Clicked CBA SmartBrief Stories


1. Bank branches remain vital for customers, FDIC study finds

CBA SmartBrief | Feb 23, 2015

The number of bank branches declined 4.8% from 2009 to June 2014, says a study by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. The study found scant evidence that digital banking has dramatically reduced the need for branches. It identified four major influences on brick-and-mortar offices: banking crises, population increases, tech innovation and legislative changes. HousingWire (02/19)


2. Banks pull from many sources to determine creditworthiness

CBA SmartBrief | Feb 24, 2015

Banks are pulling data on customers' creditworthiness from traditional and alternative sources to make decisions on loans and other financial products. Regions Bank is melding its own customer data with credit scores to predict repayment performance. "We've been able to layer in account information with consumers who have no credit, and those tests have had much better results," said Thomas Bloetscher, loan portfolio manager at Regions. AmericanBanker.com (free content) (02/24)


3. CBA wants CFPB to use evidence-based fair lending standards

CBA SmartBrief | Feb 19, 2015

CBA and other finance groups have written to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, asking it to revise its methodology for finding disparate impact in auto lending. "We share the Bureau's commitment to combating illegal discriminatory treatment in the vehicle finance market," the groups write. "This common goal is best achieved when fair lending standards are evidence-based, applied using analytically sound and transparent methods and predicated on accepted legal foundations." WardsAuto.com (free registration) (02/18)


4. Report: Student-loan default rates are highest for those with least debt

CBA SmartBrief | Feb 20, 2015

The default rate for student-loan borrowers with balances of less than $5,000 is 34%, the highest among student borrowers, according to a report from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Those with balances of less than $10,000 are the next most likely to fall behind on payments. The high default rates among these borrowers might be because they did not finish school or earned credentials other than four-year degrees, the report says. Bloomberg (02/19)


5. Wells Fargo builds holistic view of digital, branches

CBA SmartBrief | Feb 25, 2015

Wells Fargo is adopting a holistic approach that embraces digital and branch banking rather than pitting the two channels against each other. The bank says 85% of its customers still visit branches. "Digital doesn't supplant the store; it complements it," said Jonathan Velline, head of store and ATM strategy. AmericanBanker.com (free content) (02/24)


6. CFPB's Antonakes: Debt-collection rules needed to protect consumers

CBA SmartBrief | Feb 19, 2015

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is working on rules for debt collection, an area that receives the most consumer complaints, said Steve Antonakes, CFPB's deputy director. Consumers are particularly vulnerable when it comes to debt collection because they do not choose the company with which they work. Antonakes also explained the CFPB's approach to pursuing an enforcement action against a company versus using supervisory tools. Bloomberg Government (subscription required) (02/18)


7. Cordray touts increasing availability of free credit scores

CBA SmartBrief | Feb 20, 2015

Over a dozen credit card companies provide more than 50 million customers with free credit scores, and more card issuers are getting ready to offer scores this year, said Richard Cordray, director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The CFPB is pushing to reform the credit reporting industry. Hill, The (02/19)


8. Don't give promotions unless there's a reason

CBA SmartBrief | Feb 23, 2015

Leaders shouldn't promote people for the sake of it, writes Matt Straz, CEO and founder of Namely. "We all welcome promotions with open arms, but they shouldn't be used as the primary way to reward employees for their hard work," he writes. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Leadership (02/18)


9. CFPB aims to provide financial literacy to all

CBA SmartBrief | Feb 24, 2015

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has ambitious plans to improve the financial literacy of children, adults and the elderly. "I think this is going to be one key area where we are really going to make a longer-term difference," says Gail Hillebrand, associate director of consumer education and engagement. AmericanBanker.com (free content) (02/24)


10. Nonbank firms help fuel rise in subprime lending

CBA SmartBrief | Feb 19, 2015

Subprime lending continues to rise, representing nearly 40% of new auto loans, credit cards and personal loans made from January through November of 2014, according to Equifax data. Nonbank firms that are not subject to the same regulatory scrutiny as banks are becoming bigger players in the market. Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model), The (02/18)




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