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Study Finds More Millennials Turning to Community Banks
Oct 15, 2014

Millennials are interested in learning more about local banks, and a majority of Americans across the Baby Boomer, Gen Xer and Millennial generations prefer locally-owned and operated community banks—according to a new national study released by the Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) and The Center for Generational Kinetics. The 2014 ICBA American Millennials and Banking Study also found that Millennials are by far the most entrepreneurial generation, with 46 percent saying that they are interested in learning about starting up and running a successful small business.

“Community banks and Millennials are the perfect fit for one another—both appreciate local business, and both have a strong entrepreneurial spirit,” said Chris Lorence, ICBA executive vice president and chief marketing officer. “Community banks provide nearly 60 percent of all small business loans under $1 million, so they are an excellent resource for the 46 percent of Millennials who are interested in starting a business.”

The study was conducted in partnership with The Center for Generational Kinetics, which specializes in uncovering generational trends and attitudes through research.

“The national survey revealed that Millennials are a surprisingly great fit for community banks. The combination of Millennials desiring a locally owned or family-owned bank that supports entrepreneurship shows there is a tremendous opportunity for community banks to win this generation of almost 80 million people,” said Jason Dorsey, chief strategy officer for The Center for Generational Kinetics.

Key findings of the 2014 ICBA American Millennials and Banking Study include:

►Locally owned and operated banks are the first choice of all Americans for a business loan or other funding.
►Being a locally operated banking institution is almost twice as important to Americans as being a national or international banking institution.
►Sixty-six percent of Americans agree that “they wish relationships with banks and financial institutions were more personal.”
►Almost a quarter of Millennials currently earn at least part of their income from a business they own or have a stake in.
►Forty one percent of Millennials said they are very interested in starting up their own business, compared with 34 percent of Gen Xers and 17 percent of Boomers.
►More than 60 percent of Millennials who intend to start their own business hope to do so within the next two years. 

Located in small towns, suburbia and urban neighborhoods, community banks are locally owned and operated financial institutions that fund small businesses and use local dollars to help families purchase homes and build financial security. They offer top notch banking products and services that customers have come to expect, while staying true to the relationship business model that has served their customers well for decades. There are more than 6,500 community banks nationwide.

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