Stephen A. LeMay is an associate professor in the College of Business at the University of West Florida. He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in finance, marketing, banking, and supply chain IT and logistics. He spoke to FLORIDA TREND about the banking and financial sectors of the state.
Florida Banks Health: “There has only been one FDIC bank failure in Florida in the past two years. Most banks in Florida are in good shape. There has been a lot of consolidation among banks over the past two years. And I think with COVID, smaller community banks have had some advantages over larger banks in terms of having a closer personal relationship with their customers.
Tendencies: “What I see happening now is that the federal government is focusing on consumer protection, particularly overdraft fees charged to customers. Some big banks – like Capital One – are now saying there’s no charge for overdraft accounts, and that’s a pretty drastic thing for them.
Self-regulation: “Another movement among banks is towards more self-regulation. The idea is that it will derail the federal government’s efforts to force the banks to behave in terms of consumer relations.
Interest rate: “Rising interest rates will increase bank revenues to some extent with higher fees on mortgages and consumer loans. I don’t think consumers are going to fall asleep to mortgage interest rates going from 3.5% to 3.75%. But there’s a number there – say above 5% – where people will go “no, don’t go there”. ”
Ready: “One of the things we’re seeing in the housing market is that we don’t see any initiative from the banks to give flimsy loans to people who can’t afford to make the payments. “