Bank City USA, Part 2

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Last week on the ABA Banking Journal Podcast — in part one of a two-part series — co-host Evan Sparks took listeners on a trip to Tupelo, Miss., the smallest city in the country to have two banks with more than $10 billion in assets headquartered locally. The Tupelo economy is thriving today, with strong employment numbers, a diversified economy, robust GDP growth, quality schools, a best-in-class hospital and a vibrant downtown. Tupelo’s economic performance compares very favorably with similarly situated peer cities.

On this week’s episode, Sparks digs into the unique role — and the special difference — that the bank headquarters play in driving Tupelo’s economic performance: attracting a skilled workforce, providing robust competition for business loans, recruiting new companies to the region and benefiting from bank leaders’ executive-level local knowledge. Bank headquarters are disappearing a little more each day as the industry consolidates. Even major cities may not have a single large bank headquarters, and yet Tupelo has two. Is that an X-factor driving Tupelo’s performance?

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