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Company links rise in income to growth in St. Louis

Inflation’s links to globalization examined in new Dallas Fed Publication

New report links high credit card debt to medical expenses

Banks Accelerate Blockchain Investment

February 9 – Infosys Finacle, part of EdgeVerve Systems, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Infosys, along with its partner Let’s Talk Payments (LTP), have released a global survey report – Blockchain Technology: From Hype to Reality. According to the report, over 80 percent of bankers surveyed expect to see commercial adoption of the technology by 2020, with nearly half (50 percent) of the financial institutions already investing or planning to invest during 2017. This announcement builds on the recent announcement by Emirates NBD and ICICI Bank on the deployment of blockchain technology in international remittances and trade finance.


First Merchants Corporation and the Arlington Bank Announce the Signing of a Definitive Merger Agreement

January 27 – First Merchants Corporation, First Merchants Bank, a wholly-owned subsidiary of First Merchants Corporation, and The Arlington Bank have executed a definitive merger agreement whereby The Arlington Bank will merge with and into First Merchants Bank.


CFPB Sues Nation’s Largest Student Loan Servicer

January 18 – The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is suing the nation’s largest servicer of both federal and private student loans for systematically and illegally failing borrowers at every stage of repayment. According to the bureau, Navient, formerly part of Sallie Mae, created obstacles to repayment by providing bad information, processing payments incorrectly and failing to act when borrowers complained. Through shortcuts and deception, the company also illegally cheated many struggling borrowers out of their rights to lower repayments, which caused them to pay much more than they had to for their loans. The bureau seeks to recover significant relief for the borrowers harmed by these illegal servicing failures.  (more…)

Terrance A. Shirey Named President and CEO Of Nevada State Bank

January 6 – Terrance A. (“Terry”) Shirey has been named president and CEO of Nevada State Bank, a division of ZB, N.A. He succeeds Dallas E. Haun, who has served as Nevada State Bank’s CEO over the course of the past decade. Mr. Haun will continue to serve as Nevada State Bank’s Chairman. Mr. Shirey joined Nevada State Bank in 2008 as its chief financial officer, and most recently has served as the bank’s president and chief operating officer.


FDIC, SBA Announce Enhanced Money Smart for Small Business Curriculum

November 16 – The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) have announced enhancements to Money Smart for Small Business, a resource that provides practical guidance for starting and managing a small business.


The Next Generation: Emerging Leaders

By Julia Johnson, Senior Manager, Human Resource Consulting

logoJack Welch, former CEO of General Electric, once said, “If we don’t get the people thing right, we lose. It’s the most important thing in all of our businesses.” Ultimately, people, the right people, are your competitive differentiator and advantage. So what are you doing to develop your emerging leaders and strengthen your business?

Your executive officers are charged with long-range thinking:  Where do you want to be in the future? What values do you want to demonstrate? What systems do you need to take you there? What types of people do you need to fuel your future?

Your challenge, and obligation, is to develop a culture that embraces and celebrates a multigenerational work environment. Diversity builds depth and strength.

And there can’t be a whole lot more generational diversity than what we have today! We have five generations in the workplace.



Whenever the next generation enters the workforce, speculation abounds as to what is going to be different. How is the new workforce going to change the work environment or how we conduct business? Will the next generation be ready to assume positions of leadership and influence?

The events and conditions each generation experiences during their formative years determine the lens through which they see and perceive things around them. As a result, each generation adopts or, more accurately, is labeled with a generational “personality.” Lancaster and Stillman, authors of When Generations Collide, characterized four generational personalities quite succinctly. Traditionalists have the generational personality of “chain of command,” Baby Boomers of “change of command,” Xers of “self-command,” and Millennials of “don’t command; collaborate.” A generational personality has not yet evolved for the recently emerging Generation Z, but perhaps it will be “demand collaboration, technology, and diversity.” Financial institution leaders must understand and execute a focused plan to gain the benefits of a generationally diverse workforce.

Baby Boomers are transitioning into retirement and/or alternative work arrangements at an increasingly rapid pace. As such, the next generation of leadership is being called on to assume higher levels of responsibility, often without the benefit of focused development opportunities. In addition, just on the basis of pure numbers, Millennials are leapfrogging over Xers and Boomers, thereby creating opportunities for conflict and miscommunication. Therefore, it is important to establish an intentional, systematic strategy to support and utilize the inherent differences and strengths of each generation. The challenges are to build an integrated culture of “us” and to recognize the capability and capacity of each employee to drive short- and long-term business results.

Emerging leaders need your commitment to help them develop. Consider the following areas for concentrated and focused development:

  • Strategic direction
  • Organizational structure and role alignment
  • Competencies and performance standards
  • Learning and development
  • Receiving and giving effective feedback
  • Performance management
  • Rewards and recognition
  • Talent assessment
  • Succession management

It is no secret that the single most important factor of any successful financial institution is the quality of its management. Emerging leaders must be agile. They must be able to execute strategy, promote accountability, reward implementation, remain responsive to changing business conditions, and proactively pursue innovation and do so with great emotional and social intelligence.

To support the development of emerging leaders, CEOs may wish to engage an executive coach to provide emerging leaders with a thought partner and confidant to increase self-awareness, establish specific development goals, engage in problem solving, and receive encouragement when expanding skills and competencies in unfamiliar areas.

By the very virtue of the Millennial personality, which embraces collaboration and partnering together to achieve outcomes, business and industry have a very bright future.

About Wipfli LLP

With more than 1,700 associates, 37 offices in the United States, and 2 offices in India, Wipfli LLP ranks among the top 20 accounting and business consulting firms in the nation. For over 86 years, Wipfli has provided private and publicly held companies with industry-focused assurance, accounting, tax, and consulting services to help clients overcome their business challenges today and plan for tomorrow. For more information, visit


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CFPB Releases Report on Fintech, Consumer Friendly Innovation

October 24 – Remarking that “novel products” are creating challenges to the “regulatory framework,” Richard Cordray, director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau offered highlights to attendees of the Money 20/20 conference in Las Vegas of a reporting detailing the CFPB’s Project Catalyst initiative.


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