An important Wall Street Journal article on how the decline of rural banks and lending is a key factor in the decline of rural communities. The corporatisation of agriculture and the increase in the size of farms has meant less demand for rural community services and the number of people employed in those communities. Thus large banks don’t feel their rural branches are profitable enough to keep open, nor, now, do they have enough people skilled in small-town banking. Branches are closed, people come less to rural communities as the bank is not there, and rural savings flow to urban areas, instead of being used to improve the local economy.
Goodby George Bailey: Decline of rural lending crimps small town business Ruth Simon and Coulter Jones Wall Street Journal December 25, 2017