Banker To Banker

Efficient PPP Forgiveness Processing

It is around this time that many banks are trying to determine the amount of staff and effort that will be required to process all their PPP Forgiveness Applications that are now ready to be filed. Late last Friday, the SBA issued new Final Rules that further outlines what is expected from borrowers and banks that also helps in building this model. To help banks, we put together the below data and model to help answer the question – How many bankers will I need for this effort and for how long.

Lending Growth in the Age of Covid-19

The future path of the economy is currently unpredictable. Still, the majority of banks have now eliminated two possible scenarios: 1) Best case scenario – that nothing will change from February 2020; and 2) Worst case scenario – that the pandemic will not end in the foreseeable future and banks should avoid loans and invest in riskless securities.

Inflationary Risk

During the last ten years of economic expansion, prudent bankers were planning for the next downturn. Everyone knew that the economic expansion would end, but no one could be sure when or how. Smart bankers managed their business by accepting that all expansions do eventually reverse. None of us can predict the future, but enterprising bankers were conducting business to craft better results for their banks by understanding that an economic pivot would come.

While it is too soon to get the data on bank commercial real estate (CRE) portfolio delinquencies and forbearances, we take our benchmarks from the commercial mortgage-backed securities market as of May 14th. As any commercial banker can tell you, hospitality and retail remain under the most pressure, jumping up more than 5x and 3x, respectively.  Office delinquencies are up 71%, month-over-month, industrial properties remain relatively unchanged while Other (self-storage, specialty, etc.) is up 3.5x.

PPP Application Workflow

Last Friday night, the SBA released the long-awaited Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) application, and while it clarified some aspects of the program, its complexity also surprised many bankers. In the SBA’s defense, it is hard to strike the right balance of speed to market, simplicity, and breadth of idea inclusion, so overall, we must give the SBA high marks for this effort. Despite those marks, we have identified 15 areas where banks will need to focus on providing further education, process, or technology to make the process as efficient as possible.

Managing CRE Risk In Age of Covid-19

In past articles, we discussed a proposed Coronavirus stress test under CCAR (HERE) and provided our COVID-19 probabilities of default and loss given defaults for a model bank portfolio (HERE). In this article, we update our CRE modeling and take a deeper dive into loan-level analysis in order to help banks triage and manage both individual credits and their portfolio-level reserves.

Returning to Work

We have blogged about checklists for returning to work (here) and the models available to bankers to decide when to call employees to the workplace (here).

PPP Forgiveness Application

As you wind down and clean up Round 2 of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and before you produce your 1502 report to the SBA, it now merits thinking about how to best set up for the wave of forgiveness work that starts immediately after funding. Obtaining forgiveness is critical to both the bank and the borrower as it increases profitability, enhances cash flow, aids in liquidity and removes the risk for both parties. Unlike the origination process, banks now of the luxury of some time to get this process right.

Better Relationship Management

In these challenging times, both bankers and bank customers are stressed and exhausted. Typical schedules are disrupted, work environments are upended, and business models are challenged.  Because this pandemic shock has brought us into new territory, there has never been a better time in modern banking history than now to enhance your value as a banker. This environment is precisely when good bankers differentiate their service and outperform their competition to win new business, and further solidify existing relationships.

Getting Reopening Right

While we discussed our framework for deciding WHEN to call bank employees back to the branch lobbies and workplace (HERE), in this article, we cover HOW. The two decisions are interrelated since the sooner you look to reopen, the more risk you take, and the more resources you have to invest in a reopening plan.

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