For the last 10 years I have been a commercial real estate lender at a commercial bank. Throughout that period I have worked with numerous clients to sell the bank's loans and financial services based upon the promise of the bank being a good financial "partner" that was interested in a long term business relationship with the clients and their businesses. Implicit in the relationship model is a promise to be financially supportive of clients in time need --- such as this financial crisis. Many clients have come to the bank because they trusted in me. However, due to major financial losses being suffered by the bank at this time, neither senior management nor the regulatory environment allows a positive relationship with clients, even with clients that are meeting all of their financial obligations to the bank. I personally feel betrayed by my employer who advertised as a "Strong Partner" for local businesses. The attitude of the bank makes additional lending very difficult and strains the relationships I have developed at the request of the bank. I find the handling of this financial crisis by both the government and my employer quite poor. I am personally being put in a difficult position having sold the bank as a supportive financial partner who would "take care of good clients" when they needed us. Unfortunately, taking care of clients is no longer a goal of the bank. This has created a moral dilemma for me when clients ask about the bank and its attitude towards new or renewed loans. Instead of taking care of clients we are being forced to deny credit and restrict lending to all clients. This is not the relationship based lending concept we sold to clients.
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