Here For You: What Sets Community Banks Apart


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Community banks played a huge role in saving many businesses and jobs during the current COVID crisis with PPP loans. The SBA's recent release of Paycheck Protection Program loan data confirms that community banks have led the way in supporting the economic recovery in local communities. 

For example, community banks delivered the most PPP loans to minority-owned, women-owned, and veteran-owned small businesses while serving 98.2 percent of low-income or economically distressed counties.


Community banks have always maintained an outstanding record of service to the small businesses on Main Street nationwide. PPP merely provided another opportunity to demonstrate their capabilities and commitment.- Noah Yosif is ICBA assistant vice president of economic policy and research.

Community Banks Build Communities

Community banks will always be an integral part of Main Street; they reinvest local dollars back into the community and help create local jobs. Their relationship banking philosophy is ingrained in the way they conduct business, one loan—one customer—at a time. Local reinvestment helps small businesses grow and helps families finance major purchases and build financial security.

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Community Banks Support Communities

  • Local Focus: Unlike larger banks that may take deposits in one state and lend in others, community banks channel their loans to the neighborhoods where their depositors live and work, which helps local businesses and communities thrive.
  • Relationship Banking: Community bank officers know their customers and may consider family history and discretionary spending in making loans where larger banks apply impersonal qualification criteria, such as credit scoring, without regard to individual circumstances.
  • Innovation: As high-tech, high-touch local financial institutions, community banks work with their customers to ensure they have access to innovative products and services while partnering with and investing in financial technology providers. 
  • Lending Leadership to Small Business: According to the Federal Reserve’s Small Business Credit Survey: Report on Employer Firms, community banks are the small business lender of choice.
    • 79 percent of independent businesses that used community banks report they were satisfied with their overall experience, compared with 67 percent for large banks and just 49 percent for online lenders.
  • Timely Decision-Making: Community banks offer more timely decision-making on business loans because decisions are made locally. Big Banks must often convene loan-approval committees located in another state, far away from their customers.
  • Community Engagement and Accessibility: Community bank officers are typically deeply involved in their local communities, while the larger bank's officers are often detached from the communities where their branches are located.

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As local small businesses themselves, community banks only thrive when their customers and communities flourish. 



Community Banks: America's Favorite Lenders

  • Comprise 99% of all banks
  • Provide more than 60% of all small business loans
  • Make more than 80% of agricultural loans
  • Have more than 50,000 locations nationwide
  • Employ nearly 750,000 people

When we say we are here for you Minnesota, we mean it. At Flagship Bank we understand small businesses and their needs and make it a point to keep all of our business local to support our communities. First name basis here.



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