ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC)– In the wake of the failure of the Silicon Valley and Signature Banks, Big Country citizens might be feeling a bit anxious about their own money and its security in whichever bank they choose to hold with. Local financial experts say not to panic, as this incident has little chance of cascading down to the local Texas level.
“The reality is that the Silicon Valley Bank, which was the first to fail. Engaged in poor risk management…they had a lot of their assets in federal bonds. And when interest rates go up, bond prices go down,” said McMurry Professor of Economics, Dr. Paul Mason.
This is what Dr. Mason calls a lack of diversity in their asset management. Though thankfully, Big Country banks don’t exactly operate that way.
“Our local banks are not invested that way, nor are they undiversified,” Dr. Mason said.
A statement backed up by another local financial expert, Coleman County State Bank President and CEO Reave Scott.
“We’re a diversified bank with a very strong capital position that doesn’t mix match its liabilities and assets…Those banks are run completely differently than banks here in the Big Country and the vast majority of banks across the nation for that matter,” Scott said.
And while catastrophic chain reactions have historically followed large bank failures, the Federal Reserve has been working since the fall of the bank to ensure that reaction can’t even get started.
“The Federal Reserve System has been pumping money into the banking system since last week in attempt to keep the events at Silicon Valley Bank and one or two other banks from proceeding to the rest of the country,” Mason said.
And so far, no other big banks anywhere in the nation have followed suit which Mason says is a good sign. But no amount of asset diversity or Federal aid can protect your local bank from reckless withdrawal by anxious clients, as Dr. Mason puts it.
“If everybody panics and starts running to the bank to withdraw their money, it’ll be a self fulfilling prophecy. People panicking is what causes banks to fail,” Mason said.
So before you start making room in your wall safe, listen to the advice form your local banker and save your hometown economy from unnecessary turmoil.
“I would just highly recommend that those customers have candid conversations with their bankers and see that we are looking out for their best interests,” said Scott.
Other Big Country based financial institutions that KTAB/KRBC reached out to have stated that clients have not been making rash withdrawals and the financial situation locally has had little to no impact from the incident in Silicon Valley.