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Alaina Webster

Stability Through Times of Change

Thoughtful communication management is key to a successful merger or acquisition.

By Alaina Webster, Managing Editor

According to most predictions, merger and acquisition activity is expected to increase in 2018. An article from the Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation, Mergers and Acquisitions: 2018 with a Brief Look Back, states, “As a new regulatory environment takes hold, we expect that an increasing number of banks will be let out of the regulatory ‘penalty box’ to pursue acquisitions. An increase in able buyers combined with a more expedited regulatory approval process should spur bank M&A activity.”

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Growing Generation Z

Why more and more banks are promoting financial literacy in their communities.

By Alaina Webster

When it comes to community involvement, many banks focus on improving “financial literacy” in their communities. According to a 2017 survey conducted by the National Financial Educators Council, Americans estimate that a lack of financial knowledge has cost them an average of $9,724.83 per person. In fact, 25.52 percent of those surveyed estimated insufficient knowledge of finances has cost them more than $30,000.

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The Future Is Female

Positioning your bank to serve the growing market of women-led small businesses.

By Alaina Webster

According to the 2016 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report by American Express OPEN, women-owned businesses are growing at five times the national average for all small businesses. During the recession years, employment at women-owned businesses increased by 20 percent while employment across small businesses of all types nationally declined 4 percent. Women own 29 percent of all U.S. small businesses, up 68 percent from 2007. In fact, the 2013 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report found that female-owned businesses included 10.6 million U.S. companies, generated more than $1.3 trillion and employed some 7.8 million people, numbers that have only increased in the last four years.

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Rise of the Bots

How AI is changing the banking landscape

By Alaina Webster

Entering 2018, the most-discussed banking topic might be “Bitcoin.” Close behind, however, is artificial intelligence. With national giants such as JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo and Bank of America investing in and implementing major AI components in their customer-facing strategies, adoption of AI by regional/local organizations can’t be far behind.

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Alaina joined BankNews as managing editor in November 2017.  In this role, she helps develop and publish content for BankNews, Ag Banking, BankNews Mid-Week and The Bank Board Letter as well as assisting with web content.

Prior to joining the BankNews team, Alaina spent 10 years as a managing editor for Allen Press in Lawrence, Kan., a position she took after 3 years of editorial experience at Elsevier in St. Louis, Mo.  During her time at Allen Press, she oversaw production of several journals on topics ranging from surgery to economics to ophthalmology.  She has also been creating blog content for a Kansas City optometry practice for the last few years.

A life-long Kansas native, Alaina and her husband, Jon, live in Olathe, Kan., along with their two daughters, Madeline and Gabrielle, two cats and a rambunctious dog.  When she does get a break from the children, both human and furry, she enjoys reading, traveling, and trying as many new restaurants and foods as possible.  She also runs, although it cannot truly be said that she “enjoys” it.

Visit this page next month to read Alaina’s first column.

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