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The evolving relationship between community banks and small businesses: evidence from the Surveys of Small Business Finances

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  • Robin A. Prager
  • John D. Wolken

Abstract

This paper uses data from the Federal Reserve Board’s 1998 and 2003 Surveys of Small Business Finances (SSBFs) to examine the evolving relationship between community banks and small businesses. The SSBFs provide extensive data on the types of financial services used by small businesses and the sources of those services. These data allow us to answer a number of interesting questions regarding small business usage of community banks, including the following: To what extent do small businesses rely on community banks as providers of at least some financial services? What types of financial services are small businesses most likely to obtain from a community bank? What types of small businesses are most likely to obtain some or all of their financial services from a community bank? How have the answers to these questions changed between 1998 and 2003? In addition to providing detailed descriptions of the patterns of community bank usage observed in the data, we develop a simple reduced form model that uses both firm and local banking market characteristics to explain these patterns. We test a number of hypotheses regarding the extent to which community banks and larger banks differ with respect to the types of financial services provided to small businesses and the types of firms served. Finally, we discuss the implications of our findings for the future of community banking.

Suggested Citation

  • Robin A. Prager & John D. Wolken, 2008. "The evolving relationship between community banks and small businesses: evidence from the Surveys of Small Business Finances," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2008-60, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgfe:2008-60
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    4. Marianne Bitler & Alicia M. Robb & John D. Wolken, 2001. "Financial services used by small businesses: evidence from the 1998 survey of small business finances," Federal Reserve Bulletin, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.), issue Apr, pages 183-205.
    5. Berger, Allen N. & Miller, Nathan H. & Petersen, Mitchell A. & Rajan, Raghuram G. & Stein, Jeremy C., 2005. "Does function follow organizational form? Evidence from the lending practices of large and small banks," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 237-269, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Mester, Loretta J. & Hughes, Joseph P. & Jagtiani, Julapa, 2016. "Is Bigger Necessarily Better in Community Banking?," Working Paper 1615, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
    2. de la Torre, Augusto & Martínez Pería, María Soledad & Schmukler, Sergio L., 2010. "Bank involvement with SMEs: Beyond relationship lending," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(9), pages 2280-2293, September.
    3. Jagtiani, Julapa & Lemieux, Catharine, 2016. "Small Business Lending After the Financial Crisis: A New Competitive Landscape for Community Banks," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue 3, pages 1-30.
    4. Jagtiani, Julapa & Lemieux, Catharine, 2016. "Small Business Lending: Challenges and Opportunities for Community Banks," Working Papers 16-02, University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School, Weiss Center.

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    Keywords

    Small business - Finance ; Community banks;

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