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Ohio best state for banking conditions


Ohio is the best state for banking in a new listing out Monday based on customer satisfaction, deposit interest rates, bank failures rates and the number of institutions available to consumers.

This is according to a new ranking compiled by MoneyRates.com, a competitor to Bankrate.com.

For Ohioans the results mean “if your bank isn’t delivering good customer service and competitive interest rates, than you should look for alternatives because the alternatives are out there,” said Richard Barrington, senior financial analyst for MoneyRates.

The good news in banking is fewer banks are failing, a sign of stability now three years after the recession officially ended. MoneyRates.com cited bank regulator the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., saying there were 51 U.S. bank failures in 2012. About half of bank failures were concentrated in three states, Barrington said.

However, ongoing low interest rates make for still low deposit rates paid to customers in general, according to the website. And bank cost-cutting efforts sometimes impacts customer service.

MoneyRates.com said surveys show customer satisfaction with Ohio banks ranks the fifth highest in the nation. And last year there were no bank failures in Ohio, a combination that ranked it on top of the company’s list. The Buckeye state has 232 FDIC-insured institutions operating here.

“When you look at banks like Fifth Third really putting the spotlight on customer satisfaction, it’s no surprise our numbers were so good,” said James Thurston, a spokesman for trade association Ohio Bankers League, in an email.

Fifth Third Bancorp is a regional bank headquartered in Cincinnati.

The worst state for banking is Illinois, based on the same criteria.

MoneyRates.com is owned by publicly traded company QuinStreet Inc.


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