Studies indicate 1.2B people worldwide do not have proper shelter. As a result, a startup in Austin decided it would work to change that. Using a heavy-duty 3D printer, the startup can "print" a single story, 650 sq ft house out of cement in 12-24 hours. This may seem a little unbelievable, but if all goes well, the company will be building 100 homes in El Salvador next year. Even more interesting perhaps is that a printed house only costs $10k and the startup expects that will eventually come down to $4k. It looks like the tiny home market could...
According to creditcards.com, as many as 12mm Americans have admitted that they hide money from their significant others. We are not exactly sure the motivation for doing this, but experts say this is not a good thing as it builds distrust. These days, it is not as easy as hiding a wad of cash in your sock drawer either. In our high tech, data rich world, it is about as easy as a P2P text message or mobile deposit notification to find out about any extra money being kept by your partner. On the flip side, many companies seem motivated...
If you live in most areas of the country you are still probably adapting to the change to daylight savings last week. Studies show that even 1 hour of lost sleep can make you hungrier, lower your immunity, decrease your focus at work and even cause more accidents. You may be wondering if the loss of sleep is worth the extra daylight. You will be happy to know that community bankers are definitely not asleep at the wheel when it comes to fraud. That said, sometimes it feels like the more you do, the more fraud increases and the more...
A Gallup survey finds 43% of surveyed adults spend at least part of their time working remotely. The top 7 list of jobs most often cited includes: client services director, speech language pathologist, business development manager, developer, nurse, account manager and accountant. We note community banker isn't on this list, which is odd in a way because bankers every day busily engage with customers in person and remotely. After all, there is more than one way to engage with customers, and community bankers everywhere are balancing in person structures with the digital transformation wave that is already washing ashore. Banks...
What a bizarre story. It seems a neurosurgeon at Kenyatta National Hospital in Nairobi did brain surgery on the wrong patient. ID tags were reportedly mixed up between this patient and another one. The patient is fine, but the hospital suspended the surgeon and others on the team. That sounds like the right step to take until you hear that a bunch of other doctors are on strike now until a whole bunch of operational procedures are fixed and the doctor is reinstated. It seems this boneheaded hospital has not yet relented, despite the fact there were 2 patients admitted...
A Rooster Money survey finds children ages 4-14 received an average allowance of $454 in 2017. The top paying chores for kids were: washing a car ($12.49), babysitting ($12.44) and gardening ($9.93). At $454, you could have your cars, your neighbors' cars and your relatives' cars all washed. Not only that, but chores can also build character and start good money management habits for children. Given all of the cyber risk in banking these days, there are also plenty of chores for a chief information security officer (CISO).At most community banks, IT teams wear multiple hats, so it isn't uncommon...
Do you work long days? If so, you should know several studies find working less, but more effectively, can actually help you achieve more. In fact, working too much may actually be stunting achievement. High achievers like Teddy Roosevelt, Charles Darwin and Ernest Hemingway, among others, only worked a few hours a day. As you tell your boss or the board that you are going to work from 8am to 10am from now on, there are a few things to remember to boost productivity: focus, don't multitask, take good breaks (no social media during breaks) and nap.In banking, the latest...
Air-taxis sound a bit like the Jetsons (futuristic cartoon from 1962-1987). But, they could be coming sooner than you think. Uber has teamed up with Bell Helicopter to transform mass transportation and introduce air-taxis under their partnership by 2025. Bankers having to deal with even some traffic gridlock on a regular basis will welcome this news no doubt. That is big news and speaking of all things big, today we discuss where big data has gone in banking. The idea behind big data is to gather together tons of information that the bank has and comb through it to identify...
You may have heard that millennials like avocados. Well, they are taking it one step further by using their favorite fruit to propose. That's right - avocados are fruit and there are many instances where people have proposed using a ring in the middle of an avocado. Even #avocadoproposal is now a thing. This trend has even crossed the Atlantic as a British supermarket carries avocados with the stickers "perfect for proposals". What ever happened to using a simple ring box, we wonder? If creativity is the name of the game, could proposing eventually become virtual with limitless possibilities?Virtual reality...
The Beastie Boys are credited with coining the terms mullet and mullet head. This short in front and on sides but long in the back haircut is certainly something to behold. So, we wonder how you feel about it. Well, if you live in the small town of Kurri Kurri, Australia, you most likely will be celebrating the mullet and proudly wearing one. The town has a festival with a contest for the best everyday mullet, the best grubby mullet and then of course, the best women's mullet. You may not be incentivized to be creative with your next haircut,...
Did you hear about the hunter that was struck on the head by a falling Canadian goose? The hunter was actually knocked unconscious and suffered head and facial injuries. In case you were wondering, it wasn't karma. Apparently, a nearby hunter fired into a flock of geese overhead, killing one of them. That goose then fell some 90 feet and struck the other hunter on the head. For the non-hunters in the crowd, you can stop laughing now, and for the hunters out there, you might want to buy a helmet. In our industry, it seems at least some small...
New research from the University of California, Irvine shows drinking about 2 glasses of wine or beer a day is linked to an 18% decrease in a person's risk of early death. The study was done on the habits of people living to at least 90. Although not yet published in a scientific journal, this study is interesting. While there may not be any beer or wine involved, many equipment-intensive businesses, such as construction and farming, have relationships with community banks. Interestingly, these customers may not think of community banks as potential sources of funding when they lease...
Shared work spaces are all the rage these days, as companies seek to control expenses as they plot aggressive growth strategies. In this area, a new company called Birdnest has reportedly found a way to match startups with unused office space and underutilized restaurants. We think this is an interesting way to fill empty spaces in this flexible world and it may even allow building owners to eat their lunch and have their meeting too. Just as shared work companies have been thinking outside of the box, a number of banks are joining forward-thinking companies in order to attract young...
We thought it was interesting that today is National Cheese Doodle Day. Although it is not certain who the actual inventor of the cheese doodle (aka cheese puff) is, Morrie Yohai seems to get most of the credit. By the way, the world record for the most cheese puffs eaten in 20 seconds is 13 - about one every 1 1/2 seconds. We wouldn't encourage speed eating them, but having a bag of cheese puffs with lunch may not be a bad idea to celebrate today. As you munch on your bag of cheese puffs, ponder the...
National Geographic indicates the praying mantis lives about 1Y in the wild and goes by the scientific name mantis religiosa. These tough insects known as mantids can also turn their heads 180 degrees to seek out prey. We all know they have two large compound eyes on the sides of their head, but you probably don't know that there are another three simple eyes located between those big bulbous babies. In this rapidly changing industry, it is always good to know what the bank customer experience is, in order to address any service gaps and drive customer retention. Of...
People in Japan seem to generally love technology and this country is one of the fastest adopters of all things tech. Now it seems this love of technology has moved to the weather. That's right, Erica the robot or weather bot has arrived. Erica is designed to look like a 23Y old woman and she will reportedly even sit behind a news desk. She will read a teleprompter starting this spring. We wonder how long it will take for Erica to show up on news broadcasts in the good old USA and whether her weather forecasting will be any more...
At the end of last year, some fool in Virginia tried to steal a car. While that sort of thing happens all the time around the country, this brainy crook took steps to look even dumber when he was caught. When arrested that same day, the police laughed when this fool was wearing a t-shirt that read, "Trust Me." We found this very comical indeed.It turns out banking industry researchers from Washington University in St. Louis have been having fun of another type as of late. They dove deep into the data to take a close look at
You have to love this one. Lucerne University in Switzerland said it will start teaching people how to yodel. That's right - the university has hired a world class singer to teach this singing style. For the expert yodeler bankers reading this morning, you already know that yodeling involves quick switching back and forth from a low to high pitch. For the historians in the crowd, yodeling was used way back in 1545 when herders reportedly called between their villages or wanted their animals to return.We don't know too many bankers that yodel, but there are probably some out there,
Shoes are big business when you consider sales in the US are expected to generate $83B in 2018. If you have shoe manufacturers or retailers as your customers, you will be happy to know this. Of course, shoes are designed for many tastes and styles, which happens to be the same for bank branch designs. Given all the advice swirling around about branch design, it's easy for a community banker to hit information overload. Are there in fact principles that bankers can use to guide good branch design? How much space do you need to devote to tellers vs. digital
Doctors always remind people to wash their hands with soap and water (particularly during flu season), eat good food and get plenty of rest to stay healthy. Maybe it is time someone warned you about the risk of holding back a big sneeze. Believe it or not, doctors in the UK reported a 34Y old man who felt a sneeze coming on tried to contain it and was hurt by doing so. Doctors say one of the worst things you can do is try to clamp your nose and mouth shut to try and quiet or contain a big sneeze.
You might not believe it but a woman in Florida was arrested by the police for riding her horse on a highway. The issue wasn't that she was riding the horse, but rather that she wasn't doing so on some country road. Compounding matters, she was apparently drunk as she galloped on down the highway. The woman was charged with a DUI and the horse was probably put out to pasture.In banking, small businesses have been regular visitors to community bank branches since you tied your horse to the hitching post out front. Those days are long gone, however, and
Now we have seen it all. A French restaurant has reportedly installed vending machines that can spit out oysters for hungry customers 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. Our issue isn't the attempt at customer service, but rather the simple fact that no matter how much you love oysters, we have to think that machine would stink over time. We also wonder how people will be able to shuck those oysters with the plastic utensils they likely brought along for their late night picnic.Banks are constantly experimenting with things to try and attract and retain younger customers. We
It would seem that some people just don't want to work very hard. At least that is true in one part of Italy, where postal police found a mailman with more than a half-ton of undelivered mail sitting in his garage. The missing mail had reportedly been building up for 8Ys in the garage and included all sorts of things. The article gave no reason for the man's behavior, but one could certainly say laziness may have been a contributing factor perhaps.Bankers are anything but lazy, particularly when it comes to managing risk. Look no further than a
Researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine in New York have found certain compounds in grapes may help fight depression. These compounds reportedly target cellular and molecular pathways related to the immune system and that in turn could help treat depression. If grapes aren't your thing, research also finds other foods that help with depression include blueberries, yogurt and carrots. We aren't doctors, but these are all healthy foods. So, it may not be a bad idea to eat them anyway.As you ponder this today, we switch to the evolution that is slowly occurring in customer relationship management (CRM). These
A new study by UK researchers looked at people who are bitten by dogs. It surfaced some interesting information, such as: people are usually bitten by dogs they don't know vs. their own dog; men are almost 2x more likely to be bitten than women; people who own multiple dogs are over 3x more likely to get bitten than those wo do not own a dog; there are about 18.7 dog bites out of every 1,000 people in a given year; and people who have anxiety or are nervous are more likely to get bitten than those who are calm.
Watch out people! It seems research from the US Department of Health and Human Services finds high levels of cell phone radiation can result in malignant cancer tumors in the hearts of male rats. Interestingly, this did not occur in female rats, or in groups of mice that were tested. Clearly, more research is needed and is ongoing. No one is too sure what causes certain medical problems to be worse in some than others, so further analysis just makes sense. In banking, there is another form of testing going on around the world of cyber currencies. Lately, these things
Scientists have now figured out that a comet from space that hit Earth some 12,000 years ago set fires larger than the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs and led to an Ice Age. It seems the fires were so large that the dust and smoke created by them clogged the sky and cut off sunlight that led to an Ice Age that lasted 1,000 years. That is some ice cold information.As you look for a blanket to keep warm, know that community banks too have been shivering as of late. This is because community banks continue to grapple with the
A couple of Russian astronauts reportedly took a walk in space in a record setting event to repair an antenna. The only problem was that when all was said and done, the antenna was apparently installed in the wrong spot. Mission Control is now trying to figure out what to do to fix it, up to and including taking another walk in space perhaps. It just goes to show you that sometimes even the best laid plans can go awry.In banking, the same holds true when it comes to protecting against cyber risks. After all, cybersecurity and cyber-attacks are fast-moving
The flu this year is bad, but history shows it can be much worse. Back in 1918, the world was hit by a strain dubbed the Spanish flu. It triggered a pandemic that killed an estimated 50mm to 100mm people around the world. For context, that is worse than any pandemic prior or since, including the Black Plague and other such events. This year's flu seems to be peaking, so that is good, but in the meantime, get plenty of sleep, drink tea, keep your protein up, wipe down common areas, sanitize your office space, try zinc, wash your hands
Good news for people who frequently get bitten by mosquitoes. A study by Virginia Tech finds mosquitoes identify humans by odor, and swatting a buddy of theirs gives new blood sucker attackers an unpleasant interaction for about 24 hours. That causes them to steer clear. So, along with all of the sprays and lotions, you can just watch for the first bug to land and then smash it. That will tell the other circling mini-monsters to go somewhere else. Not bad to know.In this day and age, when we expect a Google search to serve up thousands of web pages
Now that scientists have cloned monkeys in China, people wonder how long it will be until humans are cloned. For what it is worth, since Dolly the sheep was cloned in 1996, scientists have cloned camels, cattle, cats, coyotes, dogs, fish, frogs, goats, horses, ibex, mules, pigs, rabbits, rats and even wolves. Heck, even human embryos have been cloned. The big breakthrough though it seems, at least scientifically speaking, is primates. The good news is that, for those who have always worried that robots would take over the world, you can now turn your attention to your own clone instead.
Well, it looks like becoming an astronaut may not be as awesome as it once was. You see, researchers are toiling away trying to figure out how to recycle poop on long space trips and turn it back into food. Disgusting, if you ask us, and certainly a long way from the early days when drinking Tang and eating weird rolled up peanut butter was the way to go. When it comes to the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), community banks understand the importance of steering clear of a "Substantial Non-compliance" rating from federal regulators. But
You probably heard about work led by Tel Aviv University in Israel. A team there found a fossilized portion of a human upper jaw that dates back to somewhere around 177,000 to 194,000 years old. The most interesting part is that it is so old, it seems to indicate the evolution of Homo sapiens actually occurred 100,000 to 200,000 years earlier than originally known. It just goes to show you that no matter what you think you know, things keep changing, so you need to keep learning. Accordingly, no matter the age of the bankers you know, the same holds
You don't want to come across the giant centipedes that can be found in eastern Asia. They are about 7 inches in length and have reportedly been found to stun and kill prey up to 15xs larger with deadly venom that takes effect in as little as 30 seconds. These deadly invertebrates have been known to kill people, as poison shuts down channels that affect the brain, heart and other organs. As you travel internationally this summer, be aware - they live in the forest, on farms and in cities all over eastern Asia. Scientists are working on anti-venom and
In the end of last month, Amazon Go opened its doors in Seattle, as the first digital grocery store without any cashiers. Your shopping bag automatically identifies and adds up everything you gather, so you can just walk in and out and everything is simply charged to your credit card. To get started, visitors simply download a special app to use the digital shopping cart and check-out without waiting in line. As this store format shows, machines can do many interesting things that make our lives easier. Machine learning is one area banks are focused on to gain a potential
Flu season this year is one of the worst in recent memory, which is why we were intrigued by work done by UCLA researchers. They have found a way to trigger longer lasting T-cells that can combat a variety of flu strains, instead of injecting a mix of several known virus strains to trigger antibodies that fight those specific viruses. While it will take some time for human testing of this vaccine, if all the other outcomes are good, it would be an amazing development for our health culture, because it would mean the days of an annual flu shot
Some days are busy with back-to-back business meetings, making it challenging to get things done. To help, here are some reminders of key elements: 1) Keep the guest list small and only invite those needed; 2) Keep the outcome in mind and focus on discussion or decision; 3) Keep it simple by eliminating PowerPoint presentations; 4) Keep everyone informed and involved to make the time count; and 5) Be creative by having walking meetings or using outdoor spaces sometimes. These reminders should help your team prepare for any future meetings.Meeting structure is important in this busy world, and structure
Did you hear about the robot that got fired? A grocery store in Scotland was using a customized robot called Pepper, to entertain shoppers and provide helpful information. Pepper was canned because he apparently was also often confusing to customers and even seemed to make some customers uncomfortable. Interestingly, this same robot is doing well in Japan and has been testing in some US markets since 2016. This situation shows that new technology may be accepted in some areas while not in others, which is worth remembering with digital banking features.Going digital seems to be the motto in banking these
The SBA reports it can cost as little as $3,000 or less to start a micro-business, while research by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation some years ago found the average cost to start a small business was just over $30,000. Of course, this depends on the type of business and how it is structured, but it is interesting nonetheless. Also of note, the SBA reports about 80% of small businesses survive their first year of operation and about 50% make it to 5Ys or longer. We bring this up of course, because so many community banks excel when it comes
The latest car tech features were unveiled at the consumer electronics show earlier this month and one of them was pretty mind-blowing. It was announced by Nissan and seems to connect the driver's brain to the vehicle. This new "brain to vehicle technology" is supposed to actually use driver brain waves to sense when the person is going to brake or swerve a fraction of a second faster. No word yet on when this technology actually comes to market, but that is pretty darn crazy. Technology in all industries is speeding along quickly and the same is true in banking.
As we enter the season of award shows, we thought it would be interesting to see what the critics thought the top 10 movies of all time were. Some of these were obvious to us, while others were quite surprising. How many of these critically acclaimed movies have you seen rated from #1 to #10 in order? Citizen Kane (1941), The Godfather (1972), Casablanca (1943), Boyhood (2014), Three Colors: Red (1994), Singin' in the Rain (1952), Moonlight (2016), Pan's Labyrinth (2006), Hoop Dreams (1994), and My Left Foot (1990). Enjoy binge watching this weekend!Trying to make this list was no
A recent study shows that women outlive men in almost all populations. Males and females were studied in seven different populations with harsh conditions such as famine and epidemics. At every age, women were found to live longer than men. While social factors and environment have varying effects on female longevity, extremely high infant mortality populations showed "fundamental biological underpinnings" of female survival. We thought creative bankers might be able to leverage this information in some way so we share it this morning. Women are advancing and community banks may find opportunity arising alongside. The number of women on
A United Van Lines National Movers Study finds that last year IL was the state where the most residents moved out. A whopping 63% of moves there were outbound. IL was followed by NJ, NY, CT and KS who rounded out the top 5 outbound states. Meanwhile, the states seeing the biggest inbound activity were VT (#1 at 68%), followed by OR, ID, NV and SD. As you ponder your next move, we bring up another interesting banking topic around state charters.Some community banks have been dropping national charters and shifting to state ones. Consider a WI community bank
January brings the rush of resolutions including losing weight. Of course, the scale plays a big role in this resolution, but many people don't know that science finds your weight fluctuates. A Duke behavioral economist thinks a new app, called Shapa, is better than a traditional scale. It doesn't report your weight, but rather reports whether or not you have progressed. We will have to wait and see, but providing feedback in the right format in banking certainly helps employees.In the past, banks may have conducted annual or bi-annual surveys to get a sense of what's working and what's not.
Pew Research finds that 1Y ago some 69% of Americans said they were using at least one social media site. This number is most likely larger today and it is interesting that retiring boomers are driving a chunk of this growth. Most people cannot imagine getting through their day without taking a minute to read their friends' Facebook posts, tweet about a life or news event, or post a selfie on Instagram. This said, online "socializing" for bank employees and customers does have its risks. In the wake of the social media revolution, where literally billions of people around the
A collection of 2,500 scientific papers finds sheep can recognize their "sheep friends". Amazingly, this is true even after being apart for 2Ys. We guess we shouldn't be that surprised, since research also finds elephants cry when they are hurt and rats giggle when they are tickled. If you have a pet, you probably already know animals have feelings, but the scientific evidence is fascinating.Bankers may not recognize some M&A deals, because many just do not deliver on expectations. That being said, M&A is part of the industry, so our advice is to start with a good strategic plan. Even
Would you take dating advice or any advice, for that matter, from a virtual assistant? Well, we found out that starting January 14th until Valentine's Day, Amazon's Alexa will be offering dating advice for anyone who asks. This "advice" is coming from a matchmaking company and should obviously be taken with a grain of salt. But, it makes us wonder, what other advice will Alexa be offering? Financial advice on small dollar loans perhaps?Offering small-dollar unsecured loans to customers has sometimes provided an opportunity for community bank lending teams, but is also comes with big regulatory and market changes in
As parents can attest, teenagers are often difficult to reach - especially when parents are trying to get them to do something. Well, as research now shows, this may not just be due to their teenager's developing sense of independence, but more specifically how their brains are organizing information. The prefrontal cortex, which is in charge of decision-making, is the last part of the brain to be organized. This means teenagers find themselves defaulting to more risky, impulsive behavior, driven by the back of their brains, while the logic pieces form fully around age 25. Parents may not like hearing
Researchers have found an unusual ocean phenomenon of twin eddies (underwater tornadoes) that move both east and west like a two-lane underwater highway. This highway transplants sea life travelers both far and fast. Though eddies are not unusual, twin eddies in opposite directions have not been observed before.New cross currents are also starting to impact the competitive world of banking too. For instance, Facebook announced a partnership with Clearbanc, a fintech based in Canada. This new synergy directly focuses on capturing small business activity through cash advances.The new service, which has been dubbed Chrged, will allow businesses that have been
The first Social Security Number (SSN) was believed to be issued in Nov 1936, but since this was done through local post offices that may not have followed procedures, even the agency does not know for sure. The first Social Security record, however, was issued to John D. Sweeney (he died in 1974 without ever getting any benefits). Meanwhile, the lowest numbered card (001-01-0001) was issued to an unknown person according to the agency, as it was ultimately distributed by a local post office. There is a lot of history around the Social Security system, not the least of which
The American Automobile Association (AAA) reports the average vehicle life has reached almost 12Ys, and there are a record high 271mm automobiles currently registered in the US. People are hanging onto their cars longer perhaps in part due to new technology providing more lasting functionality than older mechanical parts that wear down more quickly.Community bankers are not easily worn down, pushing some to gradually beef up their presence in the single family residential (SFR) mortgage market, despite extremely high regulatory hurdles. The FDIC reports that as of Q3, YTD community bank lending growth in SFR was $17B, second only to
After measuring the sun's magnetic energy, a group of scientists now project that within the next 30Ys, the world could see a mini ice age. Temperatures could start falling in only 4Ys and the solar cycle will continue until 2050 when things begin to warm up again. So, grab your blankets and get geared up, because if these scientists are right it could get mighty icy out there in some areas of the country and world.When it comes to banking and ice cold cash, money laundering remains a big business. According to the United Nations Office on Drugs
Have you heard about the technology that allows computers to figure out how to accomplish things by associating behaviors they take with a given desired outcome? It comes from artificial intelligence (AI) and is known as data reinforcement learning. Computers update their data as they learn to do very large and complicated things. Doing this allows computers to better drive cars in complex environments, beat humans when playing games and other things - all without specific human programming to do so.Let's face it, technology is advancing very fast and this is true when talking about the Internet of Things (IoT).
In the next 10Ys to 15Ys, scientists project they will have made enough progress using brain implants that all sorts of things could be cured. They project such advancements might allow people with spinal cord injuries to walk, reverse blindness, reverse deafness and maybe even restore memories lost to Alzheimer's disease. Amazingly, this approach has already been used to restore walking in monkeys with partially severed spinal cords. Now that is truly amazing, and we cannot wait.While not at the level above, community bankers too have had to make progress through an unprecedented and artificially low-interest rate environment for nearly
Neuroscientists at the University of California, Berkeley have found that one reason people forget things as they get older is because they just don't sleep very well. It seems the older you get, the less the brain synchronizes itself at night because one's sleep is more fitful. That is an interesting connection to make in the world around us and now bankers too are making new connections of a different sort.Banks are connecting with others by opening themselves up through so-called open banking using application programming interfaces (APIs). APIs are technology applications (software) that essentially "open up" bank data and
In 2017, there were 250 working days and this year there are 251. That means you have an extra day to make things happen in 2018.Along those lines, we recently took a survey of community bank CFOs to find out what their strategic focus was this year. As we begin 2018, we thought you may find the results interesting, so we are sharing the top 3 areas of focus.Acquiring New Customers is the top priority for 2018 is acquiring new customers and upselling current customers. About 92% of CFOs surveyed named this as a top focus for the year. Of
This week, as we wind up the year, we wanted to do something a little different. With over 230 BIDs published a year, you may have missed a few. In that case, we wanted to bring you our most popular BIDs for 2017, according to your peers. Happy reading and Happy Holidays!If you are worried about colon cancer, perhaps you should start munching on purple potatoes. It seems Pennsylvania State University researchers have found doing so might reduce proteins linked to the growth of cancer cells in the colon. More work needs to be done, but maybe restaurants will start
This week, as we wind up the year, we wanted to do something a little different. With over 230 BIDs published a year, you may have missed a few. In that case, we wanted to bring you our most popular BIDs for 2017, according to your peers. Happy reading and Happy Holidays!Research finds about 91% of full time equivalent employees get paid vacation. That is great because everyone needs to wind down and relax now and again. That said, a survey by Glassdoor finds the average worker only takes about 54% of the vacation days they are offered
This week, as we wind up the year, we wanted to do something a little different. With over 230 BIDs published a year, you may have missed a few. In that case, we wanted to bring you our most popular BIDs for 2017, according to your peers.Happy reading and Happy Holidays!Did you know that research finds 85% of successful data breaches target the top 10 known vulnerabilities? That isn't the news here though. What is news is that all of those breaches could have been prevented because patches were available. The companies impacted had not updated
This week, as we wind up the year, we wanted to do something a little different. With over 230 BIDs published a year, you may have missed a few. In that case, we wanted to bring you our most popular BIDs for 2017, according to your peers.Happy reading and Happy Holidays!The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) indicates the global payments infrastructure around the world is built on a complex linkage of domestic and cross-border payment systems that each has a multitude of regulators overseeing the functioning of their individual networks. Millions and millions of international wire transfers go through this
If you feel like you see more drones today than ever, you are right. Drones are also expected to increase even more over the next few years. According to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), sales of drones are expected to grow from 2.5mm in 2016 to 7.0mm in 2020. Given this surge in growth, the government is working to get all drones registered. As you think about the growth in drones, we switch now to the growth in dot-bank websites. There's been a significant uptick this year in the number of community banks migrating their internet domain from dot-com to
Doing a little research, we found out that there are currently 7,102 known languages still spoken around the globe. Of course, many of these are spoken by a small group of people and are even in danger of eventual extinction. To avoid the risk of extinction when it comes to speaking the language of cyber threats, we offer these thoughts to community bankers today.Start by knowing that you are probably taking big steps already in responding to these threats. You have detection measures in place, you have procedures to follow when breaches are detected, and you strive to keep your
Scientists from John Hopkins University have done some important research on how we make last minute decisions. It was previously believed that this activity was done in the prefrontal cortex where planning is done. However, this new research used magnetic resonance imaging to check brain activity as it occurs. This allowed scientists to see that there is rapid activity across several brain areas when decisions are made. If a change like a last minute decision occurs, super quick communication is needed between 2 specific regions. If not, you may find yourself getting off the freeway at the next exit. In
Paleoanthropologists have revealed an amazing new find - a 3.6mm year old skeleton called Little Foot that appears to be the earliest ancestor to humans. Before this, Lucy was the earliest, at half a million years younger than Little Foot. These are certainly some ancient ancestors.While community banks aren't exactly ancient, they certainly have had a longstanding role in their communities. Given several recent natural disasters and more that will come in the future, we wanted to highlight some of the good work community banks are doing to assist with recovery efforts to help you better prepare. First of
Holiday deliveries are already falling behind, so you may want to plan ahead. UPS expects to process 750mm packages this season - up 5% YOY, while FedEx expects to deliver 400mm. Despite strategic investments by the big delivery companies, surging retails sales and much more online purchasing will likely push delivery companies to their limits. Food for thought if your gift gets "lost in the mail".Banks are also being pushed to their limits when it comes to cybercrime and keeping up with more sophisticated attacks. Cyber-criminals are better at perpetrating card/new account fraud, account hijacking, and other theft. As the
Children all over the country are crying right now. That is because scientists say it is time to ban glitter. Apparently, while glitter is shiny and flashy, it also wreaks havoc on the environment. Scientists say glitter comes from bits of plastic polymer, which are all over the ocean polluting it, and glitter is a unique problem because fish mistake it for food. So, scientists say if we don't all want to eat pieces of plastic grocery bags, maybe it is time to rethink glitter too.As with glitter, bank customers seem to always be interested in the next shiny thing
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) ranks heart disease as the leading cause of death for both women and men. That's why we were very interested in news that Duke University biomedical engineers have reportedly created the world's first artificial heart muscle. Doctors say this is important because heart muscle does not regenerate after a heart attack, but instead becomes scar tissue. It looks like the Blue Devils of Duke have created tissue in the lab that functions as a heart muscle that could solve this problem and extend lives. Awesome!Community bankers are always looking for new and devilish ways
For eons people have been searching for Big Foot, Sasquatch or Yeti, as it is also known. Now it seems researchers have solved this mystery using DNA analysis techniques. Drum roll please - yetis are bears. That's right, after examining 9 different specimens reportedly from yetis all over the world, it was found that 5 were Tibetan brown bears, 2 were Himalayan brown bears and 1 was an Asian black bear. Now that you know this, be sure not to mess with a Yeti when walking in the woods.Another thing community bankers don't want to mess with is their bank's
History teaches us interesting things, not the least of which is how much things change over time. Look no further than average US life expectancy. It has shifted from approximately 40.0Ys back in 1900 to 69.8Ys in 1960. Roll forward 30Ys from there and it reached 75.2Ys (1990), before moving up to 76.6Ys (2000) and 78.3Ys (2016). Life expectancy at this point is projected to reach 79.8Ys (2020) and then push out to 83.9Ys (2050). Things have shifted in the banking world too over time, as can be seen with cryptocurrencies. These digital currencies are created using computers and
Psychologists now say knowing someone occurs when that person actively shares information with you that is particularly intimate or private. The difference between this sort of knowing someone and knowing about someone is where the line is drawn. Knowing about someone occurs when you may not even know the person, but you know things about them that make you feel like you might know them, if you met them. The example most often given here is that of a celebrity, where you may know a lot about him/her, but you have never met.Knowing someone and possessing knowledge are very important
Bankers love numbers and math. After all, how else do you count all that money in the vault? To get your number wheels going this morning we point out that 3 quarters, 4 dimes and 4 pennies is the largest amount of coins you can have without being able to make change for a dollar. If that doesn't get you going, we note that back in 1830 an eagle swooped into the US Mint building in Philadelphia and was used as a model for coin engravings for years; the TSA collects about $775,000 in loose change at airport security checkpoints
Parents used to tell us as kids that it was impolite to spit, while older siblings would give it a whirl when mom and dad weren't looking. Now it seems Penn State College of Medicine researchers want all kids to spit. You see, the researchers found a saliva test can surface five small molecules that could identify concussive symptoms in children, teens and young adults with 85% accuracy. That is amazing and sports teams, coaches, parents, and kids everywhere are celebrating. It just goes to show that things keep changing and mostly improving over time. That is why we focus
We were interested by work completed by scientists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. It forecasts which cities will be impacted if and when various ice sheets melt around the world. Suffice it to say that if the top tip of Greenland melts, it would get redistributed into London, while if the top half melts, water would find its way into New York. Finally, if the top part of the Antarctic ice sheet melts, it would be redistributed into Sydney. Strange but true, so now you know these frozen tundra areas really matter when it comes to the rest of us
There are all sorts of interesting things going on around us every day. For instance, NASA says there are about 1,800 thunderstorms in progress over the Earth's surface at any given time and lightning strikes hit about 100x each second. As if that weren't enough to get your brain going this morning, consider that The Atlantic reports astronauts can tear up in space, but they can't cry because they are in zero gravity (your eyes make tears but they stick to you as a liquid ball). Bankers are always thinking about how to keep up with shifting customer interests and
Many of our readers claim we must have placed eavesdropping bugs or some sort of cameras in their offices based on what you read here. While that isn't true and what you read here is the result of research and hundreds upon hundreds of conversations with community bankers and regulators, it does get us thinking. So, for sport this morning, you can be our eyes and ears. You may not know it, but it is physically impossible for humans to lick their elbow. So, keep watch out the window of your office, around the lunch room and when you see
Everyone is watching to see what the Fed does with rates and that seems to hinge mostly on inflation. That is why we took a closer look at the subcomponent inflation data mix recently released. On a YoY basis, areas where inflation has jumped include: bacon (+11.8%); fuel oil (+11.7%); gasoline (+10.8%); watches (+8.3%); motor vehicle insurance (+8.2%); lettuce (+7.8%); cigarettes (+7.7%); delivery services (+6.5%); cable, satellite TV (+6.2%) and moving, storage, freight expense (+5.9%). Perhaps equally interesting, the biggest YoY declines came in televisions (-10.3%); toys (-8.0%); other household furnishings (-7.2%); other recreational goods (-6.5%) and video/audio products