Bank Mergers and Acquisitions Offer Opportunities for Community Input

8 Jan

Josh Silver, Senior Advisor at National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC), recently wrote about “Public Benefits and Bank Mergers” in a Shelterforce blog post. Silver writes, “…a merger represents an important opportunity for community groups to weigh in regarding credit needs in communities and whether banks are meeting these needs.”

PCRG writes comment letters on all bank mergers and acquisitions in our region. Our comments are informed by our annual mortgage lending study and input from PCRG members and stakeholders. Our lending study compiles publicly available data to keep the community informed on trends in local and national lending and financial regulations, as well as the record of individual banks. The study is a tool for PCRG members and partners to identify gaps in services, to work collaboratively with local financial institutions, and create opportunities for new financial products and more equitable lending.

JSilver Quote

The public has 30 days after the submission of a merger application to comment. Regulators have the ability to deny mergers or approve them with conditions. Public comments feed into the regulators decision-making on these conditions. Silver reminds us, “After all, the banks are required to provide a public benefit arising from their merger.”

So, we encourage you to provide your own comment letter and/or sign onto our letters.

The current mergers and acquisitions that will affect our region are:

  • Goldman Sachs acquisition of GE Capital
  • Key Bank acquisition of First Niagara Bank
  • NexTier Bank acquisition of Eureka Bank
  • First National Bank acquisition of Fifth Third Bank’s branches in Southwestern Pennsylvania

PCRG signed the National Community Reinvestment Coalition’s comment letters about the Goldman Sachs acquisition of GE Capital and has submitted comments and met with bank leadership concerning the Key Bank/First Niagara, NexTier/Eureka, and First National Bank/Fifth Third applications.

For more information on bank mergers and acquisitions in our region, contact Ernie Hogan, PCRG’s Executive Director, at ehogan@pcrg.org or (412) 391-6732 ext. 204.