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Inside UMB: A happy workplace is a healthy one

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In the second part of our Inside UMB series, we are pleased to share how UMB’s health and wellness initiatives have provided a positive outcome for associate Janessa Baake. Learn how one of our UMB wellness coaches has helped Janessa achieve her health goals, in her own words.

Janessa Baake UMBWhen I started participating in UMB’s wellness program, I was on the higher end of all my health totals, meaning I was dangerously close to being in the unhealthy range for my height and weight.

I had gained weight after I had my daughter, and I felt slow, foggy and unmotivated to do anything about it.

I had tried everything from joining a fitness program that came with healthy shakes, to competing in a Biggest Loser competition, with zero results. Then, I decided to meet with Will, a new wellness coach at UMB.

A new way of thinking

Will asked me questions about how I wanted to feel, rather than focusing on the numbers. He made me think outside of the box and enlightened me to new ideas and ways of thinking. Thanks to his help and guidance, I’ve now exceeded my goal with a 17-pound weight loss.

It’s had a true impact on my life in that I have more energy, I’m no longer constantly hungry, and I actually feel the need to work out! I also feel sharper when doing my work and many tasks aren’t stressful or overwhelming anymore.

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A brighter outlook

The impact of meeting Will and using UMB’s tools and encouragement has made my outlook of the company even brighter. Since this company cares enough to provide a professional to help me manage my weight, stress, and anything else health-related, it has shown that they care and that I am a valuable asset.

Being our best self

My high school health teacher used to say, “You can’t do anything in this life without good health,” and this journey has definitely proved that to me. When you don’t take care of yourself, you can’t be the best you. I’m happy to say I feel like I’m now the best version of myself. And I believe that is contagious with the people we come in contact with, including our co-workers and clients. I feel very fortunate that I work for a company that is fully invested in helping us achieve our best selves.

For more information on UMB’s wellness initiatives and benefits, see our feature in the Kansas City Business Journal‡ or on umb.com.

When you click links marked with the “‡” symbol, you will leave UMB’s website and go to websites that are not controlled by or affiliated with UMB. We have provided these links for your convenience. However, we do not endorse or guarantee any products or services you may view on other sites. Other websites may not follow the same privacy policies and security procedures that UMB does, so please review their policies and procedures carefully.


UMB Financial Corporation (Nasdaq: UMBF) is a diversified financial holding company headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., offering complete banking services, payment solutions, asset servicing and institutional investment management to customers. UMB operates banking and wealth management centers throughout Missouri, Illinois, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Arizona and Texas, as well as two national specialty-lending businesses. Subsidiaries of the holding company include companies that offer services to mutual funds and alternative-investment entities and registered investment advisors that offer equity and fixed income strategies to institutions and individual investors.



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Meet the Leadership: Rekha Patnaik, Executive Vice President and Director of Bank Strategy and Administration

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Q&A with Rekha Patnaik, Executive Vice President and Director of Bank Strategy and Administration

From India to New York to Missouri (and several other stops along the way) Rekha Patnaik executive vice president and director of bank strategy and administration, had a very full journey before landing in Kansas City with UMB.

See how her family, life experiences and lessons learned along the way have helped shape her outlook on career and life.

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Tell us about what your life was like growing up.
I was born and raised in India, and have one older sister. My mother was a homemaker and my father worked as a government official in India in a role that would be similar to a position in the U.S. Forestry Service.

Because of my father’s work, we lived a fairly mobile lifestyle and frequently moved around the country. Some of these places included three years in the Andaman Islands located on the Bay of Bengal, and Shillong, located in the Northeast of India for two years. I think in all, I lived in more than six different places as a child.

While this was great because I experienced the many diverse cultures found in India, some places were better than others, particularly from a safety standpoint. We lived in Kashmir when I was in the fifth grade, and after our winter break, we could not return to our home because the terrorism was so bad. My high school years were spent in a city named Jammu, which is around 30 miles east of the Pakistani border, so during that time in my life, we lived with the threat of terrorism on a regular basis.

When you were in school did you know that you wanted to work in banking?
No. After graduating from high-school, I attended university in Pune (near Mumbai) for my undergraduate degree. I took the Graduate Requisite Exam to attend Stony Brook University in New York because of its excellent computer science program. When I graduated, my first job was actually with a technology start-up company.

Why did you move from New York?
While studying in New York, I met my husband. I landed a job at a startup company in New Jersey, and he ended up getting a job in Peoria, Ill.

After months of us flying back and forth to see each other on the weekends, we decided that I was going to move to Peoria to be with him. This is where my business career began. The job I found in Peoria bridged the gap between my technology skills and business. I really enjoyed the business side of the work, so I decided to focus more on that.

Tell us about your career at UMB
I joined UMB in 2008. I started my career in the Management Rotation Program before joining the Corporate Strategy team. I was a founding member of the Merger and Acquisition department at UMB. In my current position of executive vice president, director bank strategy and administration, I am responsible for leading and managing projects initiated by the UMB Bank chief executive officer, in addition to prioritizing bank resources and commitments to ensure maximum efficiency and efficacy.

Are there lessons your parents taught that you regularly draw from?
To me, it’s all about humility, working hard, and being even-tempered. My father was my professional role model, and he used to say, “Work is Worship.” He loved his work very much, and each day he would come home and often spend time working on his files. He was a very good diplomat and believed in the power of diplomacy to accomplish goals and get things done.

My mother always had a very cool head and would be described as “even keeled.” She was a great role model for what mothers should be. Now that I have a daughter of my own, I often find myself drawing from examples I learned from her.

What advice would you give to aspiring female leaders of tomorrow?
Going back to what my father used to say, “Work is Worship.” The more you love what you’re doing the more rewards will come to you. When you begin your professional life, don’t focus on the rewards. Be humble, work hard, be sure to network, and don’t be afraid to toot your horn, when appropriate. It can be challenging, but don’t look at life or work as a place with a destination, but as a continuous journey of discovering what you love.

 

 


UMB Financial Corporation (Nasdaq: UMBF) is a diversified financial holding company headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., offering complete banking services, payment solutions, asset servicing and institutional investment management to customers. UMB operates banking and wealth management centers throughout Missouri, Illinois, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Arizona and Texas, as well as two national specialty-lending businesses. Subsidiaries of the holding company include companies that offer services to mutual funds and alternative-investment entities and registered investment advisors that offer equity and fixed income strategies to institutions and individual investors.



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Meet the Leadership: Uma Wilson, Director of Product Management

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Q&A with Uma Wilson, Director of Product Management

Tell us about yourself.Uma Wilson, age 16
I was born and grew up in India until my early teens. I am an only child, and I suppose I received way too much attention. My mom, especially, was very keen on my studies (all the credit goes to her!). I was fortunate enough to graduate with honors and was offered an internship to come to the United States to work for a Fortune 100 company.

I learned many lessons during this journey, especially the meaning of humility. I was faced with a huge cultural change and, like any teen, I struggled a bit. Luckily, though, I was surrounded by good mentors that taught me much more than any book did.

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What about your past shaped who you are today?
My parents taught me the value of hard work and, at the same time, the value of people. Growing up I had to work extremely hard to sustain my placement in a private school, which was expensive for my parents. I’m thankful to my sponsors who believed in me and gave me every opportunity which in turn defined my future.

Did you always know you would be in banking?
No – during college and even after graduation, my natural inclination was towards technology. I had the background and exited college during the era of the computer age and Y2K. However, I quickly realized I enjoyed banking and finance and opted to go this route instead, and am so glad I did.

Tell us about your time with UMB
I’ve been with UMB for 10 years, and looking back at my college self, would never have thought I would be where I am right now. I’ve always been passionate about product management, and since entering this field, my ambition has been to be head of product. And today—because of the amazing career pathing I’ve received—here I am, doing my dream job.

Is there a defining career moment that comes to mind?
Uma Wilson and family in New York CityMy defining moment was when I received feedback from my first team—that is when I transitioned from being a manager to a leader. Being a leader is about giving direction and focusing on your team and their success.

We’ve talked about your life at different stages. Looking back, what advice would you give your 20-year-old self today?
I would explain the importance of focusing on learning, building relationships and developing the patience that comes with those items. When I was 20, the world seemed much simpler, and I remember there were times it seemed there was an easy solution to doing things better.

At that time, I didn’t understand it’s the “what and how” behind doing it better. Learning how to identify potential improvements, embracing the process, challenging things, and again, developing the patience to do all this.

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What life lessons do you hope to pass down to your children?
My life lessons are an extension of what my parents passed down to me. As I said earlier, they taught me the importance of a strong work ethic, and my husband John and I are focused on instilling that in our two children.

We always tell them that regardless of how small or big the project is, put your heart into it—be prepared, and you will be successful.

Uma Wilson is executive vice president and director of product management for UMB, which includes developing product strategy, road map, business plans and P&L management for the depository, digital, payments and card solutions. She joined UMB in 2006 and has more than 20 years of experience in the financial services industry.

When you click links marked with the “‡” symbol, you will leave UMB’s website and go to websites that are not controlled by or affiliated with UMB. We have provided these links for your convenience. However, we do not endorse or guarantee any products or services you may view on other sites. Other websites may not follow the same privacy policies and security procedures that UMB does, so please review their policies and procedures carefully.


UMB Financial Corporation (Nasdaq: UMBF) is a diversified financial holding company headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., offering complete banking services, payment solutions, asset servicing and institutional investment management to customers. UMB operates banking and wealth management centers throughout Missouri, Illinois, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Arizona and Texas, as well as two national specialty-lending businesses. Subsidiaries of the holding company include companies that offer services to mutual funds and alternative-investment entities and registered investment advisors that offer equity and fixed income strategies to institutions and individual investors.



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Learn the Rules of “CHES”

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Although many people consider home ownership to be part of the American Dream, home ownership rates have been lagging across the nation. At the end of 2016, the national home ownership rate was 63.7%, a drop of more than five percent from 2006 when the national home ownership rate was 68.9%.*

While there are some obvious economic conditions driving this trend, there are a number of additional contributing factors that vary among demographic groups. Analysis of 2015 mortgage application trends demonstrates that low- and moderate-income applicants in the state of Missouri are more than one and one half times more likely (4.3% vs. 2.6%) than middle- and upper-income applicants to be turned down for a home loan due to their credit history.

Recognizing this challenge, UMB is working with Credit & Homeownership Empowerment Services, Inc. (CHES, Inc.), a Kansas City-based non-profit credit-counseling organization. UMB will provide sponsorships to qualified referrals, making the six-month CHES, Inc. program—valued at $694—available to participants at a deeply discounted total cost of only $55.

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Through UMB’s sponsorship, low- and moderate-income applicants who didn’t credit qualify for a mortgage purchase loan will have the opportunity to participate in consumer credit education and credit restoration services provided by CHES, Inc., which is a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) housing, financial education and credit counseling organization.

The program provides access to a financial counselor who can help address the individual’s unique financial situation, with the goal of achieving long-term financial and home ownership success. While no one can guarantee the results of participation, UMB’s sponsorship of program participants is broadening the pathway to home ownership for low- and moderate-income individuals in Kansas City.

“We’ve seen many clients transform their lives in a short period of time and we’re excited to be working with UMB to continue this work in the community,” said Coley Williams, President and CEO of CHES, Inc.

*Statistical information contained within this post was compiled from the 2015 Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data available at www.consumerfinance.gov/data-research/hmda/‡ and the Current Population Survey/Housing Vacancy Survey, Series H-111, U.S. Census Bureau, Washington, DC 20233.

 

When you click links marked with the “‡” symbol, you will leave UMB’s website and go to websites that are not controlled by or affiliated with UMB. We have provided these links for your convenience. However, we do not endorse or guarantee any products or services you may view on other sites. Other websites may not follow the same privacy policies and security procedures that UMB does, so please review their policies and procedures carefully.pulation Survey/Housing Vacancy Survey, Series H-111, U.S. Census Bureau, Washington, DC 20233.


Zach Wentz joined UMB in 2015 as fair and responsible banking manager. In this role, Zach manages UMB’s compliance with federal banking laws such as the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), Equal Credit Opportunity Act, Fair Housing Act, and Unfair, Deceptive, Abusive Acts and Practices (UDAAP). He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in business finance from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln and is a graduate of the North Carolina School of Banking.



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How to Prepare for Ag Challenges in 2017

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For those in the ag business, it’s no secret that 2015 and 2016 were challenging years. And 2017 is looking like it might follow suit. In an industry known for its optimism, you could be hard-pressed to find anyone overly positive about what lies ahead this year.

Producers, in particular, are going to face more challenges in 2017 given the current commodity prices and over supply of crops. In light of those challenges, here are a few steps they can take to prepare for 2017 and beyond.

1. Know Your Numbers: As lenders work with you to project what the next year will look like, it will help to be prepared with key data points, including:

  • Planting intentions – Know your acres, crop type and fertilizer application plans
  • Working capital needs – Know what is changing and ways to improve working capital
  • Break-even analysis – Know your input costs, conservative bushel projections and sales triggers
  • Expense management – Know what specific changes are being made in your operation to endure lower prices and what further trimming can be done
  • Balance sheet basics – Have a good understanding of your current amount of working capital, overall debt-to-equity ratio and value of unencumbered real estate
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2. Be a Tough Negotiator: With the significant price changes in the grain complex, those who sell to farmers are having a harder time making the next sale. This means you have an opportunity to attain better prices when you spend money.

  • Cash rents – In general, landowners will need to make some concessions on cash rents. Be willing to negotiate but not afraid to walk away if the math doesn’t work for you at renewal time.
  • Equipment – There are definitely deals to be had on used iron, but only do what makes sense for your operation. Also, aggressive lease terms are being offered and in many cases may lower cost, or improve cash flow, throughout your operation.
  • Basic purchases – Those who sell you crop insurance, seed, fertilizer, chemical, parts, equipment and more will need to know that farmers are carefully weighing each purchase. Loyalty to such suppliers is wonderful but it is also okay to encourage competition for your spending dollars.

3. Sell Items that Aren’t Contributing: The truth is there are some things that just need to go. Whether it is a poor piece of land that isn’t producing, a tractor that might not be essential or a trailer that is collecting dust, take stock of what you have and determine what needs to go.

During this period in which some producers will have limited working capital and struggle to service debt, it is imperative to critically examine your assets. Working capital and liquidity have become – and will continue to be – critically important in the coming years. Any asset sale that bolsters your liquidity position will improve your ability to endure the current commodity prices and thriving as we look forward to better days.


Lance Albin is vice president, agribusiness commercial lending officer at UMB Bank and has more than nine years of experience in agriculture financing. He has a master’s degree in business administration from Fort Hays State University. UMB Bank is one of the Top 25 Farm Lenders in the United States serving farmers/ranchers, producers, processors, manufacturers and dealers throughout the Midwest and Mississippi Delta regions.



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Meet the Leadership: Dana Abraham, President of Personal Banking

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UMB prides itself on being a financial institution with a heartbeat that embraces the diversity of our associates. In honor of women’s history month, we’d like to introduce you to Dana Abraham.

Dana’s father inspired her to be a leader, her small business owner mother influenced her commercial banking roots and several mentors helped to shape her career. Learn more about what inspires the President of our Personal Banking Team.

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UMB Financial Corporation (Nasdaq: UMBF) is a diversified financial holding company headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., offering complete banking services, payment solutions, asset servicing and institutional investment management to customers. UMB operates banking and wealth management centers throughout Missouri, Illinois, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Arizona and Texas, as well as two national specialty-lending businesses. Subsidiaries of the holding company include companies that offer services to mutual funds and alternative-investment entities and registered investment advisors that offer equity and fixed income strategies to institutions and individual investors.



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7 Tips to Prevent Tax ID Fraud

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As the 2017 tax season gets underway, it’s a good idea to take extra precaution to prevent exposure to tax fraud. As we saw in 2016, criminals are using new and innovative methods to try to gain your trust or scare you into lowering your defenses and making a costly mistake. These tactics have continued‡ into 2017.

Tax identity fraud takes place when a criminal files a false tax return using a stolen Social Security number in order to fraudulently claim a refund. Identity thieves generally file false claims early in the year and victims are unaware until they file a return and learn one has already been filed in their name.

To help prevent tax ID fraud, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) ‡ and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) ‡ offer the following tips:

  • File early – File your tax return as soon as you have all of your documentation giving criminals less time to use your information to file a false return.
  • File on a protected Wi-Fi network – If you’re using an online service to file your return, be sure you’re connected to a password-protected personal network. Avoid using public networks like a Wi-Fi hotspot at a coffee shop.
  • Use a secure mailbox. If you’re filing by mail, mail your tax return at the post office or an official postal box instead of your mailbox at home. Some criminals look for completed tax return forms in home mailboxes during tax season.
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  • Find a tax preparer you trust. If you’re planning to hire someone to do your taxes‡, get recommendations and research a tax preparer thoroughly before handing over all of your financial information.
  • Shred what you don’t need. Once you’ve completed your tax return, shred the sensitive documents that you no longer need and safely file away the ones you do.
  • Beware of phishing scams by email, text or phone. Scammers may try to solicit sensitive information by impersonating the IRS‡. Know that the IRS will not contact you by email, text or social media. If the IRS needs information, they will contact you by mail first.
  • Keep an eye out for missing mail. Fraudsters look for W-2s, tax refunds or other mail containing your financial information. If you don’t receive your W-2s, and your employer indicates they’ve been mailed, or it looks like it has been previously opened upon delivery, contact the IRS immediately‡.

If you believe you’re a victim of tax identity theft or if the IRS denies your tax return because one has previously been filed under your name, you should:

  • Alert the IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit at 1-800-908-4490
  • Respond immediately to any mailed IRS notice and complete IRS Form 14039‡, Identity Theft Affidavit
  • Contact your bank immediately, to determine if any accounts have been opened without your permission or if your current accounts have been tampered with
  • Contact the three major credit bureaus to place a fraud alert on your credit records:
  • Continue to pay your taxes and file your tax return, even if you must do so by paper

More information about tax identity theft is available from the FTC at ftc.gov/taxidtheft‡ and the IRS at irs.gov/identitytheft‡. To learn more ways to keep yourself protected online, visit UMB’s Security & Privacy page.

Content adapted from the American Bankers Association (ABA).

When you click links marked with the “‡” symbol, you will leave UMB’s website and go to websites that are not controlled by or affiliated with UMB. We have provided these links for your convenience. However, we do not endorse or guarantee any products or services you may view on other sites. Other websites may not follow the same privacy policies and security procedures that UMB does, so please review their policies and procedures carefully.


UMB Financial Corporation (Nasdaq: UMBF) is a diversified financial holding company headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., offering complete banking services, payment solutions, asset servicing and institutional investment management to customers. UMB operates banking and wealth management centers throughout Missouri, Illinois, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Arizona and Texas, as well as two national specialty-lending businesses. Subsidiaries of the holding company include companies that offer services to mutual funds and alternative-investment entities and registered investment advisors that offer equity and fixed income strategies to institutions and individual investors.



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UMB’s History: Women take on new roles at the bank

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During World War II, more than 16.3 million people served in the United States armed forces, 10 million were men drafted into service. At home, women filled the jobs that were normally filled by men. Women moved into traditionally male dominated occupations, including banking.

In 1942, for the first time in its history, City National Bank (which would become UMB Bank) placed a woman in the bookkeeping department. Up until then, all of the bookkeepers, tellers and most of the associates working in the transit department were men.

Today, women serve in a multitude of management and leadership roles inside nearly every business line and department within UMB.

In honor of women’s history month every Wednesday in March we’ll be featuring some of the women that are now in those leadership roles.

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UMB Financial Corporation (Nasdaq: UMBF) is a diversified financial holding company headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., offering complete banking services, payment solutions, asset servicing and institutional investment management to customers. UMB operates banking and wealth management centers throughout Missouri, Illinois, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Arizona and Texas, as well as two national specialty-lending businesses. Subsidiaries of the holding company include companies that offer services to mutual funds and alternative-investment entities and registered investment advisors that offer equity and fixed income strategies to institutions and individual investors.



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February’s special anniversary

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Valentine’s Day has always been a favorite of associate Jan H. But in Feb. 2010 the day of hearts took on new meaning for her when she had heart surgery to replace her aortic valve. She now uses her story to spread heart awareness to others.

“Since finding out about my ailment, which is actually a birth defect, I always try to provide awareness to others, particularly on Go Red Day, about heart disease and stroke dangers. Since I began sharing this information, I have found others with the same issue and feel very fortunate to be part of the Survivors Club. My colleagues make these time of year even more special by always remembering me on Go Red for Women Day.


Personally, I also have a great cardiologist who takes care of my heart and great friends and a loving husband who all make each year better and better. I am very blessed!

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UMB Financial Corporation (Nasdaq: UMBF) is a diversified financial holding company headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., offering complete banking services, payment solutions, asset servicing and institutional investment management to customers. UMB operates banking and wealth management centers throughout Missouri, Illinois, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Arizona and Texas, as well as two national specialty-lending businesses. Subsidiaries of the holding company include companies that offer services to mutual funds and alternative-investment entities and registered investment advisors that offer equity and fixed income strategies to institutions and individual investors.



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St. Louis Snapshot: Q&A with Peter Blumeyer

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In the early months of the year, bankers are looking ahead and considering challenges the industry might face as well as where the industry could be going. The Risk Management Association recently hosted a Bank Presidents’ Fireside Chat to gain insight and industry perspectives for 2017. Following are a few of the comments shared by UMB Bank St. Louis President Peter Blumeyer, who served as one of the panelists.

What is your outlook for the year?

As we begin 2017, the banking industry is very competitive. We believe C&I, manufacturing and distribution will be the most competitive industries for lending this year. We have set high goals and will work very hard to compete in this market. We will also keep a keen eye on the talent in the market. We want to ensure we hire people who can compete in this industry while providing them a fruitful career.

How has UMB Bank dealt with the extended period of extremely low interest rates?

We continue to operate in a sustained low interest rate environment that has impacted our net interest margin and continues to challenge our industry. However, we have actively positioned UMB to benefit as rates begin to rise. As a result, whenever the Federal Reserve does drive the short end of the rate curve higher, the nimble position of our earning assets is expected to produce a lift in interest income. We have a solid balance sheet and take pride in our extraordinary credit quality and are well positioned for when interest rates begin to move up.

Are there any new trends developing, positive or negative, in lending?

One negative trend we are experiencing is aggression. As mentioned above, the market is very competitive as every bank looks for new deals and areas to grow. We are seeing customers hone in on the aggressive competitive nature. They might ask for more money with a lower rate or try and compare different term sheets. This can work in their favor as they search for the best rate, but it’s also a risky situation. If a customer tries to piecemeal a deal, it might not be very attainable for the banker to create.

A positive trend is the market is healing. We are slowly coming back from the recession, which is very exciting. Companies have access to the money they need to grow their business and perform their capital expenditures. This is even better for our economy as more growth is added to St. Louis. It is encouraging to see, and at UMB, we are excited to support this growth.

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UMB Financial Corporation (Nasdaq: UMBF) is a diversified financial holding company headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., offering complete banking services, payment solutions, asset servicing and institutional investment management to customers. UMB operates banking and wealth management centers throughout Missouri, Illinois, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Arizona and Texas, as well as two national specialty-lending businesses. Subsidiaries of the holding company include companies that offer services to mutual funds and alternative-investment entities and registered investment advisors that offer equity and fixed income strategies to institutions and individual investors.



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