A Loan Pricing Solution that will help banks make more money

Loan pricing solutions were popular twenty years ago but they were too expensive for a lot of community banks. With banks looking for ways to make more money now might be the time to look at an affordable, easy to implement loan, relationship and deposit pricing tool.

Many banks don’t take the size of the loan into consideration when pricing commercial or commercial real estate loans. Size of the loan is one of the biggest contributing factors to the profitability to the bank. Most banks over price their biggest most profitable customers and under price their smallest least profitable customers.

Do you know which customers are the most profitable and which ones your lenders think are most profitable? A pricing tool that takes the loan and deposit relationship into consideration will give you a precise look at customer profitability. It will also tell you when to price up and when you can provide a better deal for the borrower…to win or keep the deal.

Some loan customers are fee averse. Although we never recommend not charging a fee for a loan, what rate provides the same return to the bank if there was no fee? Fees on all loans matter, but they really don’t contribute to the overall profitability of a customer on larger loans with a longer expected life of the loan.

Do you factor in deposits when pricing commercial loans? Are the deposits in interest bearing accounts or non–interest bearing? Does a large depositor necessarily warrant giving a lower rate on a commercial loan? The short answer is “no” but a pricing tool will help your lenders with that decision.

Do you price consumer loans based on the term of the loan? Do you consider the size of the loan when determining the rate? Do you collect fees on consumer loans and is it a driving factor to overall profitability?

Contact Strunk at 800.728.3116 or email at info@strunkaccess.com to learn about how our loan pricing tool will increase net interest income by at least 25bp. For a $200M loan portfolio that is $500K per year.


Strunk at ICBA LIVE 2024

This year’s ICBA LIVE, hosted by the Independent Community Bankers Association, was held in sunny Orlando, Florida from March 14-17 at the Orlando World Center Marriott. In addition to various roundtable discussions, ThinkTECH presentations, and Learning Labs attendees enjoyed visiting with vendors in the Marketplace.

Strunk was excited to meet with so many bankers, discussing a variety of topics important to them today. Many banks are taking advantage of Strunk’s Pricing Manager solution, a full-featured loan and deposit pricing application. Banks are able to deploy a tool to all lenders to ensure they are armed to price loans profitably and consistently based on each bank’s target profitability objectives. It also provides the ability to understand the details of relationship profitability so that better pricing decisions can be made. Pricing Manager is affordable, easy to implement and use, and it will increase the bank’s net interest income by 25-50 basis points.

Many banks are understandably concerned about lost fee income, so another hot topic of conversation was Secure Checking. The program will allow banks to implement a monthly maintenance fee on each checking account and not worry about consumer backlash. It’s a tried and true program that works every time – at literally hundreds and hundreds of FIs across the country. Through the program, fee income increases at least $50 per account, per year. These consumer demanded features are supported by a company that has been in this business for 50 years and Strunk has been working with them for a decade.

Strunk continues to provide value-added SaaS solutions that help community banks increase profitability, while controlling operating expense. In addition to these offerings, Strunk discussed their overdraft service and best-in-class governance, risk and compliance solution, Risk Manager.

For more information on Pricing Manager, Secure Checking or Strunk’s other solutions, visit  https://strunkaccess.com/ or contact Strunk at info@strunkaccess.com.

Over Pricing Your Largest Most Profitable Customers

One of the biggest mistakes many FIs make when setting pricing strategy is to establish a ‘base lending rate’. Often this ‘base rate’ is applied regardless of the type, size, or term of the loan, and worse, is often set to Prime. For example, when considering a five-year fixed rate on a commercial real estate loan, from time to time we come across a client or prospect that applies their ‘base rate’ of Prime which today would be 8.5%. The problem with that approach is we are ignoring a fundamental principle of finance – we’re ignoring interest rate risk and the term structure of rates.

The Prime lending rate is an overnight rate – technically Prime can change any day. Obviously a 5-year rate is a much longer-term rate. Comparing Prime to a five-year fixed rate is really comparing apples and oranges. Let’s dig into this a little further. Today, Prime is 8.5% and a five-year fixed rate advance from the FHLB is 4.25% – a difference of 4.25%. In February of 2022 Prime was 3.25% and a five-year FHLB advance was 2.25% – a difference of only 1.00%. In February of 2020 Prime was 4.75% and a five-year FHLB advance was 1.50% – a difference of 3.25%. And in February of 2018 Prime was 4.50% and a five-year FHLB advance was 3.00% – a difference of only 1.50%. As you can see, the relationship between five-year rates and Prime is highly inconsistent. Over the past 6 years Prime has been as much as 4.25% and as little as 1.00% above a five-year rate. So, we have to ask ourselves, why would I tie the rate on a five-year fixed rate loan to Prime?

The other challenge this practice can lead to in the current environment is over-pricing some of our largest, most profitable customers or prospects – which could lead to losing existing relationships or get in the way of winning new relationships. We model loan scenarios for FIs all across the country many times each day so we see a large number of loan opportunities and how they are being priced in the market. Particularly on larger deals – say $1,500,000 and above – we often see rates in the mid to low 7% range. However, we also see rates as high as 8.5% on the exact same scenarios – particularly when the FI currently follows the ‘base lending rate’ philosophy. One of the ways Pricing Manager can help your FI earn more net interest income is by helping win more larger, profitable deals by pricing more competitively.

If you would like to learn more about Pricing Manager, please contact Strunk at info@strunkaccess.com or 800-728-3116.

Strunk at the ABA’s Conference for Community Bankers 2024

This year, the American Bankers Association hosted the Conference for Community Bankers in San Antonio, Texas at the beautiful JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country from February 11-14. Attendees kicked the event off with a golf tournament, some educational sessions and once again, celebrated the Super Bowl with a Big Game Tailgate Party!

Speakers discussed topics such as how the FHLBs and the ABA work together most effectively, strategies for retaining customers, how to outperform peers and the state of our commercial lending markets. The highlight of the general sessions was quite possibly James Olson, a former Chief of Counterintelligence for the CIA who shared insights into his undercover career. Bankers and vendors alike enjoyed a reception on Monday evening celebrating Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory.

Strunk was excited to have the opportunity to show their newest solution, Pricing Manager, to clients as well as many new faces. Pricing Manager is a full-featured loan and deposit pricing solution that will provide banks with the ability to set loan and deposit pricing consistently and profitably. Commercial loans can be priced consistently by every lender, creating options for customers that all achieve the bank’s profitability targets. Additionally, rate sheets for consumer loans, residential mortgage loans, and deposits were introduced. These rate sheets can easily be created also based on established profit objectives. Not only will Pricing Manager drive consistent achievement of profitability targets – it will also help banks win more quality deals!

Strunk’s goal is to continually provide value-added SaaS solutions that help community banks increase profitability, while controlling operating expense. In addition to their latest offering, Strunk highlighted their overdraft service and best-in-class governance, risk and compliance solution, Risk Manager.

For more information on Pricing Manager or any of Strunk’s other solutions, visit https://strunkaccess.com/ or contact Strunk at info@strunkaccess.com.

Setting Rates for Loans and Deposits

When setting rates for loans or deposits many factors come into consideration. The credit risk of the borrower; collateral for the loan; ability to repay the loan; the term of the loan; and competition are all factors that most banks look at when determining the interest rate. One big factor that many financial institutions don’t consider is the size of the loan. That is a critical misstep when it comes to the profitability of that loan to the bank.

Similarly, banks set rates on deposits on market factors such as liquidity, borrowing capacity from the Federal Reserve or FHLB, and what the competition is offering. Money market rates are sometimes tiered based on the amount in the account but rarely do we see rates tiered on certificate of deposits or other interest bearing accounts. Occasionally banks will have a jumbo CD rate for accounts over $100K.

Most community banks lack the ability to determine costs associated with making loans or handling deposit accounts. With Strunk’s Loan, Relationship and Deposit pricing tool you can set target goals for profitability such as return in equity. Our solution will determine what rate you need to achieve on loans and what rate you can offer on deposits to meet that goal.

Give your loan officers a simple program to use to win more deals while meeting your profitability goals. Size matters when it comes to loans and deposits. Strunk’s loan and deposit pricing tool can make your bank a lot of money. Contact Strunk at 800.728.3116 or info@strunkaccess.com to see how it works.


Time to Consider a Loan and Deposit Pricing Tool?

Many community bankers “look down the street” when pricing commercial loans to see what the competition is doing. Ironically, those bankers are looking at your bank as well to see what rate to offer! What if neither bank knows how to ensure the loan nor the borrower’s relationship is profitable?

In the mid 2000’s large and regional banks used pricing tools to help them win more deals and to ensure the loan/relationship met their profitability target. Community bankers were left out due to the complexity and cost of the pricing solutions.

Then from late 2008 until March 2022 the prime rate was so low that any loan a bank would make was better than investing in Fed Funds. Therefore, loan pricing tools weren’t much of a benefit to community banks. However, in the past two years rates have risen due to inflationary concerns and we are now faced with a prime rate of 8.5%.

There are many factors that go into a pricing decision and an inexpensive, simple to use loan pricing tool will give your bank an advantage in today’s interest rate environment. Size, term, fees, fixed or floating rate, balloon, collateral, and of course the borrower’s creditworthiness are all important factors.

2024 is the year to look at giving your loan officers a simple program to use to win more deals while meeting your profitability goals. Just like loans, size matters when it comes to deposits as well. Strunk’s loan and deposit pricing tool can make your bank a lot of money. Contact Strunk at 800.728.3116 or info@strunkaccess.com to see how it works.

Strunk’s Loan and Deposit Pricing Solution

Pricing commercial loans for community banks can be daunting especially in areas where they compete for loans with larger institutions. With a yield curve that has changed dramatically over the past 18 months, isn’t it time your senior commercial lender looked at a loan pricing solution?

Commercial lending comes all shapes and sizes and borrowers are more sophisticated now more than ever. What should the interest rate be? For what term? Is there a fee involved? Is the rate floating or fixed? And lastly, will the borrower keep deposits with the bank?

Loan pricing solutions have been used by larger institutions for years and community banks sometimes just “throw a dart” to see what a borrower will pay. Generally, costs associated with underwriting and servicing the loan is not considered since it is hard to determine what they are. With interest rates at historically high numbers (last 15 years) maybe community bankers should look for an affordable loan pricing program.

Strunk’s loan and relationship pricing solution is designed to model all types of commercial loans factoring in costs associated with the loan, pricing for risk, and providing a return that is satisfactory to the bank. The program takes into account deposits the borrower may have with the bank as well as other loans. Banks will typically see a 25-50bp increase in NIM after implementing Strunk’s solution.

The loan pricing model is easy to use and training the lending staff is paramount to getting buy-in for the solution. The goal is to increase net interest margin while also giving bankers a tool to understand why you may have lost a deal.

Does your bank consider the size of the deposit when pricing CD’s or money market accounts? Just like loans, size matters when it comes to deposits. Strunk’s loan and deposit pricing tool can make your bank a lot of money. Contact Strunk at 800.728.3116 or info@strunkaccess.com to see how it works.


Credit Unions: Size Matters When Making Loans

When making auto loans most credit unions look at the term of the loan, the age of the car or truck, and the creditworthiness of the member when determining the rate for the loan. Most institutions look at loan to value, debt to income and/or the credit score of the member before deciding to make or decline the loan request. But, very few credit unions look at the size of the loan when setting rates and all of them are missing out on a huge opportunity.

The three main factors when trying to meet profitability goals from a consumer loan portfolio are: 1) creditworthiness of the borrower; 2) term of the loan and 3) SIZE of the loan. Most financial institutions consider the size of the loan by the age of the vehicle. Many years ago the age was a good substitute for the size of the loan but not anymore.

Small dollar car loans are not nearly as profitable as larger loans when factoring in the costs associated with underwriting and servicing these installment loans. Even if the credit report and term of the loan are equal when evaluating a loan, credit unions should not offer the same rate for a $10,000 loan vs. a $25,000 loan, or a $50,000 loan.

Strunk’s loan pricing solution factors in all drivers of profitability and we will help you set rates based on your credit union’s target return. The tool is very inexpensive, easy to use, and will increase your credit union’s bottom line. In a recent meeting with a 25 year tenured CEO of a credit union she said “I’ve never heard of looking at the size of a loan to determine the rate for a loan. When can we get signed up?”

Contact Strunk 800.728.3116 or at info@strunkaccess.com to learn more about our loan and deposit pricing solution.

Strunk’s Loan Pricing Solution Will Increase Income

Over the past 30 years Strunk has helped over 1,800 community financial institutions increase income with a variety of innovative products and services. Their most recent solution is a loan and relationship pricing tool that will increase your bank’s net interest margin.

Starting in 1993, Strunk was the pioneer in overdraft privilege programs which turned out to be the best fee income idea in the history of our industry. Bankers would say “How can we increase fee income with a formal overdraft program without raising prices?” Our strategy substantially increased fee income while consumers benefited at the same time by not paying the retailer’s fee for returned checks.

Then in 2007, Strunk became an original investor in BancVue which later changed their name to Kasasa. Bankers would say “How can we afford to offer 6.5% on a checking account without cannibalizing all of our accounts and increase our debit card transactions at the same time?” Guess what, the reward checking program (Kasasa) doubled debit card transactions, increased the number of accounts using online statements, and new deposits far outweighed cannibalized accounts.

Prior to Dan Roderick’s, Strunk’s CEO, group purchasing Strunk in 2013 he ran the largest loan pricing solution in the market. It was very expensive yet very popular. Working with over 400 banks across the country, he helped them their net interest margin with very little effort.

Strunk’s loan pricing solution is very inexpensive, easy to use, and will increase your bank’s bottom line, just like what we have been doing for our industry since 1993.

Contact Strunk 800.728.3116 or at info@strunkaccess.com to learn more about our loan and relationship pricing solution.

Loan Pricing Tool That Will Increase Net Interest Margin

Historically, loan pricing solutions for community banks were not affordable and only the larger or regional banks used them. The competition for lending generally dictates the rate offered to the customer. There are several factors that go into loan profitability but the three main drivers are the risk of the borrower, size of the loan, and term of the loan.

Here is an example of how a loan pricing solution can help your bank win more deals. A community bank shared a recent deal that they lost due to pricing/structure of the loan. The bank had a client that was purchasing a dump truck and wanted to borrow $100K. The bank offered Prime – 1% (7.5%) fixed with a five year amortization and a 1% upfront fee. The borrower who had $25K in deposits and no other relationship only wanted to pay 7.25% with no fee on the loan.

The bank did not have a pricing solution to determine the profitability of the loan/relationship so their line in the sand was Prime – 1% with a $1K fee. The borrower went elsewhere for the $100K loan (the $25K deposit hasn’t left the bank yet…as of this writing) and the bank lost out on the interest income.

After running the loan opportunity through Strunk’s Loan Pricing solution, the bank should have made the loan at 7.25% with no fee since it would result in a 17.95% annualized return…rather than let their customer go somewhere else. The net income from this one lost loan opportunity would more than pay for the Strunk loan solution for a whole year.

Now is a great time to look at an inexpensive, easy to use loan pricing tool to see if it is a fit for your financial institution. Increasing your Net Interest Margin is easy. Contact Strunk at 800.728.3116 or at info@strunkaccess.com to learn more about our loan and relationship pricing solution.