LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - 2013 has seen its share of big banking deals in Arkansas, and Arkansas Business talks to bankers this week who said there are more deals to come.
The bank deals continue, and all indications are, from everyone in the banking industry that we've been talking to, that there are more on the horizon. Arkansas Business this week taking its annual look at the state's biggest banks, this time ranked by deposits.
Number 1 on the list is Arvest Bank with more than $6 million in deposits. It was Arvest's deal in December of last year to acquire 29 Bank of America branches here in Arkansas that was at the start of this latest round of bank consolidation.
Since then, Home BancShares of Conway closed on its $280 million purchase of Liberty Bank of Jonesboro, and Rogers Bancshares declared bankruptcy so it could sell its Metropolitan National Bank of Little Rock to Simmons First National Corp. of Pine Bluff.
One bank to watch is Bank of the Ozarks of Little Rock. That bank, like Simmons First and Home Bancshares, has been snapping up failed banks in other states. But indications are now that there's lots of interest by banks that are not in financial distress, so called "live banks," that are actively soliciting companies like Bank of the Ozarks to be bought out. So basically, you've got banks that are now evaluating these offers and prioritizing them for possible acquisition.
So what does this mean for bank customers? Lance Turner of Arkansas Business stated that mainly, it will mean some change, particularly if your hometown bank is acquired by one of these bigger firms.
And it could mean additional convenience and bank offerings. It's definitely going to be an interesting year ahead as banks sort out their recent acquisitions and seek new ones.
You can read the complete story right now at arkansasbusiness.com.