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Ross Baird: Increase the flow of capital to rural entrepreneurs

Editor’s note: As banks have consolidated and closed small-town branches, only 18% of new businesses get a bank loan. Less than 1% of businesses, mostly tech companies in big cities, ever raise venture capital. “That leaves 81% of businesses stuck with no formal access to capital,” Village Capital’s Ross Baird told the U.S. House of

The undervalued social impact of community banks in local economies

In the movie classic, It’s a Wonderful Life, Jimmy Stewart plays the hero whose foil is a crusty, tight-fisted banker, the stereotype of the soulless businessman. For years, the mean-spirited banker has been a useful creation of Hollywood screen writers, novelists, and the media. Unfortunately, banks reinforce this stereotype when they make mistakes or treat customers