An overwhelming majority of bankers in Wisconsin say the state’s economy was strong in 2019, and should continue to be strong in 2020. 

Ninety-five percent of bankers said Wisconsin’s economy was good or excellent in 2019, according to the Wisconsin Bankers Association’s (WBA) survey of bank executives across the state.

“Seventy-nine percent of the Wisconsin bank CEOs and presidents contributing to the latest Wisconsin Bankers Association (WBA) Bank CEO Economic Conditions Survey said the economy was good while another 16 percent weighed in with ‘excellent,’ ” the Bankers Association said. 

And almost the same number expect the state’s economy to be just as strong in 2020.

“Seventy two percent predicted the Wisconsin economy will stay the same with 23 percent saying it will improve,” the survey noted. 

The bankers say low unemployment, low interest rates, and a strong manufacturing sector in Wisconsin are driving their optimism. 

“As predicted in our last survey, 2019 was a strong year for Wisconsin’s economy and lending activity,” WBA President and CEO Rose Oswald Poels said. “It’s very encouraging to see most bankers believe 2020 will continue that positive trend. Bankers are the best barometers of the economy as they see all segments of every marketplace. They work together with their communities and are the first to see and understand Wisconsin’s economic trends due to their customers’ activities.”

The only concern the survey notes is the state’s farm economy. 

A little more than half of the bankers asked say farm loan levels are fair, another third said farm loan levels are poor. Another half of bankers say they expect that trend to continue into 2020. 

Benjamin Yount reports on Illinois and Wisconsin statewide issues for The Center Square. Reposted with permission.

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