How are small town banks doing now? Yesterday, Sheila Ferrell, VP Cashier of Farmers Exchange Bank, gave me an update on small town banks. She has been with Farmers for 24 years. It’s a terrific little bank in Cherokee, Oklahoma, (population approx. 1600), with a few branches in surrounding towns.
Ferrell stressed that Farmers is not doing the same types of loans as those big banks that are in the news. They do more farm and business loans. But doesn’t that leave them vulnerable to the economy, as it begins to affect the small town businesses? Not yet, and she doesn’t think it will.
“Our loan base is not going to cause a problem,” Ferrell said. “We’ve got the money to lend.”
Lack of population and the usual small town problems are the bigger driver than the larger economy. One of the driving tourist attractions for the area, the Great Salt Plains Crystal Digging Area, has been closed. That’s much more important to the town of Cherokee than the national economic situation.
- Community engagement planning: old way vs. Idea Friendly way - October 3, 2021
- Boost your maker economy with a “Made in” day - September 17, 2021
- How a ghost town made something from nothing with a folk festival - September 3, 2021
- Rural business idea: sell foraged fruits and more - August 3, 2021
- Best practices for rural housing - July 19, 2021
- How to be more open to new ideas #IdeaFriendly - July 3, 2021
- Market your small town as a movie filming location, attract movie and game fan tourists - June 28, 2021
- Survey of Rural Challenges 2021 results, analysis of themes from 2015 through today - June 7, 2021
- What makes a small town a micropolitan or nanopolitan? - May 22, 2021
- Improving Rural Housing: turning blighted dilapidated houses into new homes - May 7, 2021