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The year 2020 brought enormous health, economic and social challenges to the world.  Generally rare in times of crisis, the pandemic impacted communities from coast to coast.  Banks are a key component of the economy.  They hold the deposits of consumers and business, lend money in the community, and facilitate payments.  Banks were faced with the unprecedented challenge of altering their operations to protect their employees while at the same time providing critical services to their customers.  While Governors’ orders to close certain businesses was devastating for owners and employees, closing down the banking system would have been catastrophic for the economy.

To provide support for the economy and consumers, the Congress passed a series of measures to provide protections for consumers and inject money into the system.  One program, the Payroll Protection Program, provided forgivable loans to small businesses that maintained their payroll.  The program was administered by the Treasury Department and the Small Business Administration.  The fastest way to get the money into the economy was to utilize the over 4,000 banks in the country to receive applications, submit for approval to the SBA, and receive and disburse the funds.  The volume and speed would be challenging enough in normal operations, but the banks had to meet this challenge while having employees working from home and very limited access to bank facilities by customers.  In the end, 5,459 lenders made 5,098,522 loans totaling $521,683,173,363. 

The country experienced a secondary shock with the death of George Floyd.  This elevated the attention and discussion of social justice and diversity and inclusion in the United States.  The outrage was felt in many communities across the country as people protested and demanded change.  Many businesses have had to evaluate their culture and practices and the impact on diversity, inclusion and economic fairness.

Questions - 2021 Community Bank Case Study Competition


Using the FFIEC 041/051 Call Report, Uniform Bank Performance Report (UBPR), and other publicly available data sources, students should analyze and provide an analysis of one of the following:  

  • Earnings Performance 
  • Loan Portfolio Concentrations
  • Asset Growth 
  • Capital Levels  
  • Liquidity  

To facilitate uniform analyses amongst teams, this financial analysis should be completed on a year over year basis covering five years.  This section should comprise no more than two pages out of the 25 total for the project.


(address the questions most pertinent to the institution) 

  1.  What actions did the bank take to protect its employees while serving the banking needs of its customers?
  2. Did the bank participate in the Payroll Protection Program? A) How did they execute the program under the challenging conditions?; B) Did they accept new customers?; C) Were there businesses that did not qualify or were not approved by SBA that needed the assistance
  3. Did the bank create any new programs to meet customers’ needs?
  4. What was the direct impact of the pandemic on the bank’s balance sheet? A) Loan volume; B) Marketable securities volume; C) Deposit volume; D) Other borrowings
  5. What one great story does the bank have that exemplifies a community bank serving its community?

 (address the questions most pertinent to the institution) 

  1. How has the bank addressed diversity and inclusion with its staff, executives, and board of directors?
  2. Does the bank have any special programs or products to support diversity and inclusion?  For example, lending programs aimed at minority and women owned businesses or policies related to vendors.
  3. How have the market demographics of the bank’s trade area changed over the last decade?
  4. How has the bank supported local projects, on its own or through sponsorship, to serve underserved areas or promote economic development?
  5. Have the recent protests related to social justice changed the bank’s approach to diversity and inclusion?
  6. Community banks generally have a culture of compliance, meaning they strive to adhere to the regulations designed to protect consumers and ensure fair lending practices.  How can banks leverage this aspect of their culture to be seen as leaders in their communities for diversity, inclusion and social justice?  
  7. Are there things regulators and policy makers could do to support community banks in efforts to address diversity, inclusion, and economic fairness?
  8. If the bank has a trust department, have they received more inquiries or adopted investment policies regarding Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG)?

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