Our take on the latest trending events:

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The economy continues to roar, but it isn’t helping banks in terms of their loan growth. Loans overall and C&I lines continue to experience much weaker growth than a few years ago. Not only that, but promising upticks in loans earlier in the year have now decelerated. Unless a turnaround occurs in the second half of the year, this seems likely to affect small and midsize banks and credit union earnings going forward, and ultimately, their stock prices.
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The Fed has provided strong signals that it will continue to increase interest rates. This suggests that banks should consider purchasing shorter-term assets to gain the best risk/return mix.
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Robust job creation and wage growth was reported in the most recent DoL statistics in August. Both are likely to increase both consumer optimism and borrowing ability going forward, which is good news for financial institutions.
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Banks and fintechs are increasingly forming partnerships to drive business. The predominant forms of partnership are either joint ventures between banks and fintechs or a bank developing an in-house fintech operation. The track record of each, however, indicates that both partnership paradigms can be challenging. Banks may benefit more from innovative recent methods, such as lending to, or purchasing loans from, existing fintech consumer loan platforms
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