ICBA and Montana Independent Bankers Encourage Americans to Save During America Saves Week

Washington, D.C. (Feb. 20, 2015)—The Independent Community Bankers of America® (ICBA) and Montana Independent Bankers (MIB) are proud to add the community banker voice to the list of organizations nationwide that are encouraging Americans to save as part of America Saves Week, Feb. 23-28. This nationwide campaign, which began in 2007, features a broad coalition of nonprofit, corporate and government organizations that are committed to raising awareness for the importance of creating savings funds, building emergency funds and assessing savings plans.

“It’s never too late to develop good saving habits to achieve financial stability,” ICBA Chairman John Buhrmaster, president and CEO of 1st National Bank of Scotia, N.Y., said. “By participating in America Saves Week, the nation’s more than 6,500 community banks continue to raise awareness of the importance of savings and offer consumers tips on how to reach savings goals. We encourage customers to speak with their community bank about how they can begin a savings strategy or build on what they are already doing to save for the future.”

America Saves Week is an annual opportunity to help promote positive savings behavior and for consumers to assemble their own savings plans. Learn more about why saving is so important and how to get started on building a nest egg at www.americasavesweek.org.

“Community banks are available to help local residents plan their financial futures,” Jim Brown, Executive Director of MIB, said. “Beginning to save can be intimidating, but with the help of your local community bank, creating and maintaining savings funds should be one less thing you need to worry about.”

ICBA and MIB offer the following tips to help consumers get started on their personal savings:

  1. Set a goal: People are more successful when they have certain goals in mind, so create and share a savings goal with your family and friends. Start small—even saving your loose change can get you somewhere. Aim to start a path toward building an emergency fund of savings with six to nine months of living expenses.
  2. Make a plan: By creating a spending plan, list your expenses and compare them to your income. The plan will help prioritize what are necessities and wants for the month. Attempt to use your credit cards more efficiently, too. Doing that can help ensure that you will not take on too much debt and can minimize interest charges.
  3. Save automatically: Many employers offer regular payroll deduction, which is one of the best ways to start and keep saving money. Make it a routine to automatically put aside a certain amount of money each paycheck, or ask your community bank to make an automatic transfer from your checking to savings account each month.

ICBA will be hosting a Twitter Chat on Tuesday, Feb. 24, from 2 to 3 p.m. (Eastern time) to highlight the importance of savings. Guest tweeters include America Saves, Erin Lowry, Experian, Michelle Singletary, National Jump$tart Coalition, Practical Money Skills and Wise Bread. Follow America Saves Week’s hashtag, #ASW2015, and @ICBA on Twitter to join in.

To find a community bank near you, visit www.banklocally.org. To learn more about community banks, visit www.icba.org and follow @ICBA on Twitter.

About ICBA The Independent Community Bankers of America®, the nation’s voice for more than 6,500 community banks of all sizes and charter types, is dedicated exclusively to representing the interests of the community banking industry and its membership through effective advocacy, best-in-class education and high-quality products and services. For more information, visit www.icba.org.