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Ease up on regs, Illinois bankers say in national survey


From Illinois Business Journal news services

SPRINGFIELD — Bankers in Illinois say new-business formation and customer relationships are being hindered by the need to comply with laws and regulations.

Additionally, according to a new survey, while many bankers believe the overall economic condition in the market is stable, they find borrowers more conservative since the recession. Bankers also indicate that trying to find qualified individuals to enter into the banking industry is difficult.

Those are among findings of a national survey titled, “Community Banking in the 21st Century,” announced this week by the Conference of State Bank Supervisors and the Federal Reserve. Community bankers across Illinois took part in the survey and town hall meetings, according to Michael J. Mannion, director of Banking at the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.

The survey was administered by state bank directors in 39 states, including Illinois. A total of 974 community bankers participated in the survey, providing a national view on the key issues facing the industry and how they are responding to market conditions.

Additionally, state regulators in 27 states held town hall meetings with more than 500 community bankers from April to July. The town hall summaries provide a unique opportunity to connect the quantitative data in the survey with the stories and experiences of bankers serving their communities.

“In our continued efforts to improve the regulations that govern our state banks, open dialogue and feedback are crucial,” said Michael J. Mannion, Division of Banking director. “The findings of the study and town halls provide us with yet another tool in our efforts to create a more responsive, efficient and effective regulatory experience.”

In the state of Illinois, approximately 80 bankers attended the town halls facilitated by the Division of Banking.

“As the state’s regulatory agency, it is incumbent upon us to foster healthy public-private collaboration,” said Bryan Schneider, IDFPR Secretary. “By quantifying the areas of strengths and areas of concern among our state bank stakeholders, we can advance a regulatory environment conducive to strong economic growth and opportunity.”

The survey results and town hall summaries are available on the Community Banking in the 21st Century Research Conference website, .

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