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Commercial Banking

The Industry Today

Commercial banking in the United States is a broad and diverse industry. It covers the very large banks financing U.S. and international corporations, community-based “mom and pop” banks catering to the banking needs in their local community, and “thrift” institutions (savings banks and savings associations), so-called because their original purpose was promoting small investor “rainy day” savings and financing home mortgages. Add to the mix credit unions, which are nonprofit institutions that compete with banks and thrifts for consumer banking customers. They provide many of the same financial services (checking and savings accounts, credit cards, equity credit lines, and home mortgages) as banks and savings associations, but they don’t write business loans.

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