The Economy: How Bad is it, and What are Banks Doing About it?

New Survey Looks at Key Challenges, Business Objectives of Institutions of All Sizes
The Economy: How Bad is it, and What are Banks Doing About it?
Customer confidence - everyone from the President of the United States to the chairman of the community bank has an opinion about it and how it's suffered in the wake of recent economic events.

But how deep is this confidence crisis, and what exactly are banking institutions doing - if anything - to battle it?

This question is at the core of the new Banking Confidence Survey launched by Information Security Media Group, publisher of and The study assesses the aftershocks of recent events on U.S. banking institutions and the vital confidence of their customers, using respondents' input to:

Gauge the extent of this lack of confidence;
Show how banking institutions are tackling the challenge;
Identify their immediate business priorities, as they rebound from hard times.

A Split Decision?
In many ways, the economic crisis has showcased the differences between Wall Street and Main Street.

Everyone hears about the plunging stock market and the big bank failures - IndyMac, Wachovia, and the biggest of them all, Washington Mutual. But what of the other 12 banks that have failed so far this year - smaller institutions with lesser-known names? How was customer confidence impacted in their communities? What is the impact -- if any -- on confidence in communities where banking institutions remain safe and sound?

Similarly, everyone got the news earlier this week of the $125 billion government investment in nine of the largest banking institutions. But what of the remaining 8000-plus banks? What infusion will they receive to boost liquidity and increase customer confidence - and do they really need it?

Reactions to recent moves have been mixed.

"The Banking End Game is now in play, and the winners have been selected," writes one reader in response to the story Treasury Rescue Plan: Top Banks to Get Top Dollars. "It would be a waste of money to bet beyond The End."

"Clearly, the infusion of money from the government should be earmarked only for those institutions that are on the watch list of the FDIC," writes another. "Healthy banks such as the one I work for, whose capital ratio far exceeds the standards set by FDIC, should not receive any such funding."

"It makes me wonder just where this money is coming from," writes a third.

Given this disparity of views, one also expects to see a diversity of opinions when it comes to the questions surrounding customer confidence:

In your opinion, how has consumer confidence changed in the last year?
What is your institution doing to bolster consumer confidence?
Given the changes in the economic conditions, what are your top business objectives?

To weigh in on these issues and others, please take the quick survey and stay tuned for the announcement and analysis of results.

About the Author

Tom Field

Tom Field

Senior Vice President, Editorial, ISMG

Field is responsible for all of ISMG's 28 global media properties and its team of journalists. He also helped to develop and lead ISMG's award-winning summit series that has brought together security practitioners and industry influencers from around the world, as well as ISMG's series of exclusive executive roundtables.

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