Most people in Mercer and Darke counties are familiar with Mercer Savings Bank. We’ve been your local community bank for 125 years.
For many of you, we’ve helped you reach the milestones of your lives—first checking account, first car, first home, college fund for the first baby…
Few of our neighbors are aware, though, that Mercer Savings is a mutual bank.
What is a mutual bank?
A mutual bank is owned by account holders. If you open a savings account, you are considered a partial owner of Mercer Savings. A mutual bank works for account holders, because account holders are owners. “By opening an account, obtaining a loan or planning your retirement with Mercer Savings Bank, you are part of a legacy of great customer service, integrity and value.”
Account holders, however, do not make decisions for the bank. A board of directors controls the bank. Mercer Savings’ board of directors consist of community leaders. As noted on our website, “We rely on the board and officers to ensure Mercer Savings Bank fulfills its mission of providing excellent service and value to the people of Mercer and Darke counties.”
A traditional bank is owned by shareholders, which means a regular bank is more concerned with pleasing them, not you.
Mutual savings banks more closely resemble credit unions and savings and loans than traditional banks, because they are owned by members.
Advantages of a mutual bank
- Customer service. Bank employees know you’re one of the bank owners and are more eager to please. In effect, your success is the bank’s success, so employees do their best to ensure your success.
- Long-term perspective. Since Mercer Savings is not a traditional bank that has to make profits for shareholders every year, we develop a long-term perspective. This permits us to build beneficial relationships within the community and offer more flexibility for our customer owners.
- Financial stability. Mutual banks were among the few banks that survived the Great Depression, because they don’t make risky investments.
- Customer safety. Mutual banks are chartered by state or federal governments. Mercer Savings deposits, for example, are insured by the FDIC. Mutual banks also make cautious investments to safeguard the investments of their owners—you. Mutual banks can weather market volatility much better than traditional banks.
- Profits are reinvested in the community. The profits from loans are usually returned to owners in the form of lower rates on loans and higher rates on deposits. Banks usually donate to community events. Mercer Savings has a long history of donating to local school, cultural, and community events.
- Employees invest in the community. Not only do employees buy homes, cars and other products from community businesses, they frequently volunteer. For example, Mercer Savings’ Helping Hand program donates 1,650 volunteer hours to the community each year.
- Advice. Community members can walk in at almost any time and receive advice from financial professionals who live in the community. We also write informative articles about financial issues of interest to our community members.
Mercer Savings Bank has been your trusted community bank for 125 years. Call 877.672.4543 or contact us online to find out how we can help you.