Evaluating the Psychology of Money


Rarely do I pause to share recommended reading, but a new feature in this month’s Independent Banker magazine is worth it. The “Psychology of Money” feature in the December issue is some of the finest journalism on banking and finance that I’ve come across in some time—and I’m proud to say it came from ICBA.

The feature story from writer Kelly Pike probes how irrational emotions and biases drive our relationship with money, and how community banks can use that information to serve their customers and better their business. The story also examines various banking offerings and how customers react depending on what’s happening inside their mind.

For instance, relationship bankers can be a lifeline of support to customers who are dealing with financial stress, family problems and even fraudulent schemes that feed on their emotions. Meanwhile, incentive offers can fall flat when customers believe they’re too good to be true.

“Money can make people do strange things,” one Kentucky community banker says in the piece. That is certainly an understatement.

The newest issue of Independent Banker is online and in the mail, so I encourage you to take a look when you have a spare moment. It’s always good to see community banking through different lenses to gain a new perspective. One thing is for sure: you’re not going to find this kind of content anywhere else.

The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine

If you want to know who and what really triggered the financial chaos and calamity through which we all have just lived, a must read is The Big Short by Michael Lewis.

If you are a true community banker, this book will make your blood boil. The arrogance and greed that Lewis exposes on the part of many “elites” on Wall Street will leave you shaking your head and fist. If nothing else, read the book’s epilogue. It will open your eyes, or, as the saying goes, “The truth will set you free.” And when you are done, you will know exactly why the community banking industry needs an independent, focused voice. Why we need ICBA.