Solution to the Banking Crisis? Look to North Dakota
Fed up with the greed and recklessness of large national banks, critics of Wall Street are pointing to North Dakota as an alternative for reshaping the banking industry. North Dakota is the only state in the country to own its own bank, the Bank of North Dakota (BND), which managed to avoid needing a federal bailout and to run a hefty surplus. Instead of diving into subprime mortgages like its larger counterparts, BND has kept its focus on helping state agriculture and partnering with community banks. The BND helps share risk with smaller banks and keep interest rates under control and credit available for North Dakotans. Its loan portfolio is estimated to be more than $2.5 billion. Attorney and financial author Ellen Hodgson Brown says the country would be better off by opening more state-owned banks like BND.
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