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July 28, 2008

The importance of banks in North Carolina

The financial sector, including banks, has had a rough time in the current economy. Should we in North Carolina be particularly concerned when this sector takes a big hit? Listen

Dr. Mike Walden, North Carolina Cooperative Extension economist in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at N.C. State University, responds:

"We really should because I think it's fair to say that in the 21st century financial services is the new tobacco. People, I think, who have been in North Carolina a long time know that tobacco was the premiere economic sector in North Carolina for much of the 20th century, but it was certainly downsized in recent years. Now one sector that has come along to take its place is financial services. In fact, financial services in North Carolina now accounts for $51 billion of economic value through the state economy every year, several times larger than tobacco. And financial services share of the state economy has doubled in the last decade, from 6 percent to 13 percent. Now, of course, much of this sector is centered around Charlotte, but it's importance is really statewide. So we should definitely pay attention when we hear something effecting the financial services sector."

Posted by Dave at July 28, 2008 08:00 AM